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Adam Chabukiani: Defying All Odds

The story of a young Georgian refugee, born through the chaos of the Abkhazia War to find his feet in the footballing world.
Started on 5 October 2015 by Jack
Latest Reply on 5 July 2019 by Justice
Whilst on holiday i was going through stories for the first time in a while, after reading the first few updates i realised this was one of the first stories i read in the FM16 stories section. After reading through it all its great to see how far you've come! I enjoyed it as much as i did when i read the first update all that time ago! Great work mate!
BeanyUnited: Couldn't agree more, mate! They've done excellently to gel with the previous squad and the results are showing already - they're a great group of players :)

TheLFCFan: It was the first FM16 story on the site so I'm not surprised it was one of your first :P But thank you so much, man! Makes me feel brilliant knowing people have enjoyed the story as much as I am making it for you :D

After two excellent qualification phases, Bradford Park Avenue have been named in Group H of the UEFA Europa League for this season's campaign.

Wins against I.F. Elfsborg and SC Wiener Neustadt led to the qualification into the Group Stage of the European competition for Avenue. This year's team has impressed in all aspects this season with Chabukiani's team in 2nd place in the Premier League and already four wins in Europe.

Bradford have been placed in Group H for this phase of the tournament. They were the third seed for the stage after arriving in the 2nd Qualification Phase.

Bradford will face a bit of a challenge in their group, though. Coming in as the first seed for the group is Sporting Lisbon who finished in 3rd place last season in the Portuguese Primeira Liga, just behind SL Benfica and champions FC Porto.

Sporting have come under fire in the Portuguese national media after apparently 'backing out' of winning the top-flight by selling £50M worth of top players this summer. They sold Matheus Pereira for £27M to Chelsea and César Lafrentz for £22M to Juventus and failed to adequately replace them, with Felipe Gutiérrez and Lorenzo Rivera their biggest signings yet.

Despite this, Sporting are still an incredible outfit and will be a tough team to face. Bradford will have to break down a defence of Jonathan Silva, Edoardo Goldaniga and Gonzalo Pizzo before trying to score against Sporting and Portugal legend Rui Patricio in goal. With a midfield filled with talents like Federico Bravo and Carlos Mané and Nelson González up-front, Sporting will be expecting a breeze through to the Knockout Round.

The second seed for Group H is Ligue 1 outfit En Avant de Guingamp, led by Benjamin Nivet. The French team finished in 5th place last season, 11 points ahead of sixth place Lyon.

Despite EAG's second seed ranking superior to Bradford's, Adam Chabukiani will be hoping to defeat this team as their actual team is definitely worse on paper in comparison to Bradford Park Avenue. Unlike Sporting, though, Nivet has managed to keep all of his top players at the club for this season which suggests a well-knit feeling around the squad.

Andy Delort is the man to look out for against Guingamp, with the 29-year-old striker winning Ligue 1's Top Goalscorer award last season with eighteen goals in 38 matches in the French top-flight.

Coming in as the fourth seed is Romanian Liga I outfit Dinamo Bucharest. The Eastern European team began their Europa League campaign in the First Qualifying Phase against Macedonian team Turnovo, before victories against Olimpija, FK Austria Wien and Ludogorets.

As expected, Dinamo are possibly the weakest team in Group H, but will still be considered a threat due to their resilience shown to come through all four qualifying phases undefeated.

Romanian international Marvin Schieb is to be considered a threat to opponents in the Group Stage. But perhaps a familiar name to Premier League fans following Bradford's story is the Ivorian midfielder Cheick Tioté who joined Dinamo back in 2019 after his Newcastle contract expired.

That will be all the teams in Group H, though, with the only other English teams featured in this tournament being Tottenham Hotspur, who finished fifth in last season's Premier League and Leeds United, who won the F.A. Cup last season at the hands of Manchester City at Wembley.

Bradford Park Avenue's first Europa League match will be against arguably the best team in Group H as Adam Chabukiani faces André Villas-Boas' Sporting Lisbon on 16th September.
Absolutely no excuses not to qualify, a very weak group
Believe you can top that group! Sporting will be tough but after what you've achieved in this save already you can do it!
Second place at very least is expected not hoped for! Pick up a point at Sporting and I believe you should top the group, best of luck mate! :)
Griffo: You're a hard man to please, Griffo ;)

TheLFCFan: Couldn't agree more with you, it's just a matter of turning up on the day as we're definitely superior in terms of quality!

BeanyUnited: Gotta say you're right there, can't see Guingamp or Dinamo going through in my opinion :P

In a month where our league fixtures were surrounded by constant cup matches, be it Capital One Cup or Europa League, our league form definitely took a hit as we fell down to our first two defeats in the Premier League this season, winning one against Stoke. However to make up for that we were victorious in all of our cup games against Sporting, Dinamo Bucharest and West Ham.

We found ourselves back in Switzerland this month as well, with a return to the World Cup Qualification Phase after three months since impressive wins over N. Ireland and Hungary in June. We drew with the toughest team in our group as our world rankings lift us up eight places from 21st to 13th.

Obviously since last month we have lost ground in the league which was always bound to happen when you are prone to occasional poor form as a club. We dropped six points this month and now sit six points behind current leaders Chelsea who sit on 19 points. In the Europa League, EA Guingamp have definitely been an extremely surprising package as they top Group H after two games. The Ligue 1 team won both of their fixtures this month, including an outstanding 6-1 win against Sporting and 4-0 victory against Dinamo Bucharest. Those results put both of ours to shame.

Internationally, we still lead the way in Group 2 of the World Cup Qualifying Phase for Europe. With our draw against Portugal this month the only points we have dropped this campaign, we maintain a steady lead on them as we sit four points ahead of them. In October we will face San Marino and Northern Ireland again before finishing our qualification campaign in November.

Perhaps a surprise entry this month as Mason Holgate wins the Bradford PA Player of the Month award for September after starring in all six contests that we played this month. The full-back was able to get forward and start attacking more, leading to three assists as well as a great defensive performance against Dinamo Bucharest to deny the Romanian team of enough chances.

Looking good in all comps so far keep it up
A strong month mate keep it up!
Wow Sporting are flopping there against Guingamp. But still a great result to beat them for you! Although you lost ground in the premier league top 4 is still great! Champions League football at Bradford Park Avenue sounds good to me! Keep it going man!
European football at Bradford Park Avenue, absolutely amazing man!
Who has En Avant de Guingamp brought in to make them so strong?
ninjaskill: Just gotta stay consistent haven't we :P

BeanyUnited: Cheers mate!

TheLFCFan: I was massively surprised to see that result with Sporting! And I must say that CL football sounds beautiful to me ;)

mgriffin2012: It's kinda incredible in my opinion :P

Griffo: I really don't know, there's nobody superb in their team but they have this Belarusian striker called Alisevich who seems pretty good

Adam Chabukiani has today agreed a new three year deal at The Avenue which will be worth £4.8M at the time of expiration.

The 34-year-old Georgian entered his seventh season as manager of the West Yorkshire outfit this term as his Bradford PA team go into their first ever European competition in the form of the Europa League.

Adam Chabukiani:
I've had a fantastic time in charge here and I am delighted to further my stay here at this historic club. My time here has been successful beyond my own expectations and ambitions when I was offered the managerial role and I look forward to keeping the good times rolling at this new stadium.

Chairman John Dean offered Chabukiani a contract until June 2024 on £31,000 per week. To say that the manager was earning £450 per week in his first deal at Horsfall Stadium, his stature in the game has risen considerably since his first competitive fixture against Alfreton Town.

Chabukiani has won promotion in every single season he has been in charge when possible, with the exception of last season when he led Bradford Park Avenue to Europa League football which they are contesting now.

John Dean and fellow Bradford directors have come out in the press to say that they are delighted that their employee has accepted their offer after receiving several job offers in the summer - signifying that their man is in demand.

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