Woking FC - 18/19 Pre-season
With a revamped tactics module in this years game i was keen to look at how we can set up in the lower leagues where the ability is just not there to play the likes of Gegenpress and Tika taka football. Therefore we needed something a little more simple and ready for the lower leagues. This is what i am opting for
A relatively basic 4-4-2 with the idea to get the ball forward quickly and out to the wings to knock in crosses. With two strikers (Target man and Advanced forward) we should have at least one willing striker to run into the channels and a big man to get on the end of any crosses, we should have the firepower to score the goals. So far i haven't tweaked any of the parts of the formation preferring to see how the out of the box option will do for the first part of the season.
Off the back of this a secondary formation (4-4-1-1) with a pure direct play is being trained as a back up formation should we need it.
After going through the U23's and the U18's i got myself to the conclusion this would be roughly the 1st team squad for the season wiithout any new transfers.
It looks pretty strong but there is some work to do as we do quickly go into teenagers for back ups in a lot of positions and although i do want to give youth a chance, i think we need a few more better rounded players to make a charge over what will be a long season.
is our best player by a longshot and will play as a ball winner in the middle of the park alongside Max Kretzschmar
in what looks to be a very strong central midfield for the division. I cant actually remember the last time i had two 4.5* midfielders in the middle of the park. Max will be more likely a box to box engine midfielder to give us some impetus moving forward.
However, it is the two men infront of them that the formation is going to rely on. Jake Hyde
is a useful looking target man with 14 for heading and some decent height to boot. He should be able to terrorise defenders in the air and it should mean any floated crosses we will be in the hunt for. Greg Leur
alongside him will be the legs and will be the one that will help stretch the back 2 to give Hyde more space. Well that is the plan anyway!
I will call out more of the squad as we go through the season
Scouting & Transfers
With lower league management it is all about looking for bargain buys which quite often means the free transfer market. A modest scouting budget has been supplied which as expected has gone on scouting the Vanarama North/South to see if there are any decent players we could pick up for next season on frees as we can't afford to pay any transfer fees
Over pre-season a tonne of players were bought in on trial as i looked to add a few more players. The main aims were for wingers, a central midfielder and the defence and it was tough going. A lot of players were either no better or the ones that could make a difference were not interested. However 3 new faces all join the ranks
The first signing ever on FM19 goes on a 20 year old Congolese/Englishman midfielder. Not one i could have predicted but Max has some decent ability meaning he is the natural back up for Ferdinand and Kretzschmar and he has pedigree having come through the books of both Tottenham and Watford. At £50 per week he is even low risk on wages.
Quickly behind him was Chris Paul, a Northern Ireland U21 International who also started his career at Tottenham before moving to QPR and than out of contract. The coaches really rated him and although a right back wasn't high on the list, he does naturally fit better into a more attacking full back as overlapping is a factor of the playing style we have chosen.
The last man in is another Tottenham Alumni having started there before moving to Norwich and than being cut having not played a game for the Canaries. A very solid centre half with lots of double figures in the physical departments as well as in the key technical stats. He comes in as a starter despite his young age.
There were no other outgoing's but we are still way under budget on wages even when i secured new contracts for our best 5/6 players. To help with the finances i also asked for a senior affiliate and i was pleased to tie up a deal with Sunderland who will pay us £30k a year, come to us for a friendly every season and loan us their youngsters. So far none have come over but in time that could become an important source of players for us.
Things have been going alright on the pitch too as the players have adapted themselves nicely to the 4-4-2 formation.
As you can see goals have been pretty easy to come by so far smashing four goals on 3 occassions but we can't get ahead of ourselves as all of the games were against weaker opposition in lower divisions than ourselves. Newcastle U23's was our one defeat but to be fair i rested the whole 1st choice side as the match came just 3 days before our first league fixture and i didnt want a knackered team for my debut.
Greg Leur caught the eye early on scoring 6 goals in 6 games and could be the main man this season. A young winger Reggie Young who was in the U18's at the start of the game has also come through and is in fact in pole position to be on the left wing for the opening game after some impressive performances including a handful of assists.
So far the cards are looking in my favour. Let the season begin!