For those who know me, this topic is a surprise because I never had a story started in the forum section, ever. Heck, the last save I actually played (and enjoyed) was back in FM12.
I wanted to get back into the game - even for a little while - and hopefully that time has come.
The club to begin with was easy. The team I support has been dominating the domestic league for a number of years, but this season was different. Olympiakos not only didn't win anything at all, they also failed to qualify for next season's Champions League.
If I fail miserably - which is possible - I have loaded 9 other top European leagues as playable, in case my motivation levels remain high enough to carry on.
In real life, Thrylos changed 4 head coaches during the season. Not once the team showcased effective football, let alone attractive.
However, my mission for this save has more to do with myself getting back into the game, rather than ensuring Olympiakos achieves all the goals the board will set.
It's not that I won't make an effort to achieve whatever the board will throw at me, but in all honesty I just want to try and enjoy this return to FM.
In the next update, I'll reveal my first steps in pre-season and share my feelings about how different the game feels since my last career save back in 2012.
Any questions or feedback, I encourage you to come forth with it.
└ This post was edited by Stam (2018-05-17 07:54, 5 months ago)
Second day, second story update. I'm hoping to maintain daily updates if possible.
I won't lie to you. The very first thing I did after starting my save was to fire up Genie Scout 18g and get an informed look at my squad; the Greek players in particular.
(wanting to) Build a core of Greeks
Over the past few years, Olympiakos in real life is filled with foreigners.
Being a championship contender every single season and having no patience whatsoever about trusting the local players... well, that sums up the situation.
You'd normally count 2 Greeks in the starting XI. That made me sad. But hey, they had to win at all costs.
On my watch (this FM18 game) I won't let this happen. I want my first team to have at least 5 Greeks. Which is why I made sure to load all players with Greek nationality when starting my save.
Assessing the Squad
To be honest, I had started another save where I had only loaded Greek Superleague as a playable league. After like 4 days in-game I ditched it for 2 reasons; (a) selling players didn't work at all with 1 playable league, and (b) I wanted to have another league to move to if I'd get sacked.
So, I've assessed Olympiakos' roster twice and placed most players on the transfer list.
I didn't change their squad status though, I didn't offer anyone to clubs, and I didn't populate the unwanted list at all. Why?
Because after realizing how impossible the transfers AI of FM18 is like, I got the impression it's best to see that "Wnt" icon emerge without demolishing my players' morale while there's no interest to leverage.
As a result, 4 players attracted interest from clubs abroad. Frankly, that's still pretty meager, but it's a start.
That's it for today's update. If you have any tips for me on how I can get rid of more players, please let me know.
└ This post was edited by Stam (2018-05-11 09:45, 5 months ago)
As Scott said it'll be very challenging to offload your foreigners and still compete but if anyone can do it I believe you can, and I can't wait to hear more about your time there!
I also really like your take on the whole transfer list thing. I never thought of it like that, ridding of players without damaging morale in the case that the end up not leaving. Maybe I'll learn some more from you as you go on
Fingers crossed I can get rid of them fast. It's not that they're bad players (they're quality), but my plan is to make room for the locals and boost my transfer budget (by adjusting the gap in wages).
Roster Rundown & Transfer Targets - Part I
Let's start with the goalkeeper position. I've got 3 keepers and they're all transfer listed. Belgian international Silvio Proto (34) is the most notable.
In real life, Olympiakos is in talks with Slavia Sofia to sign Antonis Stergiakis (18) for roughly 700K. I liked his prospect in FM18 as well, so I've placed a 250K bid for him and managed to sign him!
Therefore, I won't be looking any further. I'll trust him as a starter despite he's not ready yet to perform at the highest level. Hoping he'll develop faster this way.
My team desperately needs a right back (or two) as Omar Elabdellaoui (25) is covering the spot all on his own. And he's transfer listed.
I've got 2 left backs in Greek youngster Leonardo Koutris (21) and Iranian international Ehsan Hajsafi (27). The latter is transfer listed. I'll be on the lookout for a left back.
There are 4 natural centre-backs in the roster.
The board splashed the cash on Bjorn Engels (22) in real life last summer (5.5M) making him the most expensive signing of defender we've ever made. I'll keep him for now and see how he copes as a starter.
Pape Cisse (21) is a towering and powerful centre-back from Senegal that we signed last year from Ajaccio (a Ligue 2 side). He seems to possess sufficient quality to stay on the team and be a useful rotation option.
Then we have the Spaniard Alberto Botia (28) and Greek youngster Dimitris Nikolaou (18).
The first one is transfer listed, but hasn't attracted any interest so far; I'm assuming because of his injury (out for 6 to 12 weeks).
Nikolaou doesn't have high potential, but I wish to use him as a starter or on rotation at least.
Sadly, I have no clear targets for the defensive end yet.
And despite the fact Greece is known for producing solid defenders (e.g. Manolas, Papastathopoulos...), all the good ones are already playing at better teams abroad. I'll monitor them just in case they become unsettled at their clubs or their contracts are expiring.
I'll carry on with Part II of "Roster Rundown & Transfer Targets" on my next story update. Stay tuned and feel free to comment with your remarks and transfer suggestions.
└ This post was edited by Stam (2018-05-12 20:18, 5 months ago)
Nice little addition in that keeper there. Very bold move to transfer list pretty much all your foreigners like I said before but I'm enjoying seeing you take on the challenge. Looking forward to hopefully seeing an all Greek team lead Olympiakos this season.