Season 2022: July
An Overview Of Peimari United In July 2022
"July was set to be one of the most exciting months in the history of Peimari United. With UEFA Europa League qualifiers set to begin during the hottest month of the Finnish summer, Peimari United were set to participate in continental competition for the first time ever. What a time to be alive!"
Peimari United Sold Guido Claeys For A Record Fee And Signed Three During July
First in the door, as the transfer window opened, was teenage Spanish goalkeeper Sergio García
. The eighteen year old shot stopper signed on a free transfer from US development side Scott Galagher Missouri. García made sixty-four appearances in all competitions at senior level, earning nineteen clean sheets as he impressed. He came in to Peimari United to join the youth team, with a view to being loaned out soon enough. He has a lot of potential, but he's nowhere near ready for the senior team.
With Guido Claeys leaving the club for a seven-figure fee, we were desperate to secure a competent replacement. With no viable options available for free, we had to spend some money. Veteran Swedish striker Pontus Engblom
joined for a club-record fee of €17,750 from Norwegian Eliteserien side Sandjeford Fotboll. The thirty year old attacker had played 303 league games across various levels of football in Sweden and Norway, scoring an impressive 113 goals in the process. He was not as technically gifted as the outgoing Claeys, which upset some Peimari United fans, but he was considered to be an incredible professional and provided experience and high levels of determination to the squad.
Our transfer record was once again broken as we signed Aapo Mäenpää
shortly after. The Finnish full back signed from IFK Mariehamn for a fee of €28,000, and was brought in to add quality competition for places in defence. At twenty-four years of age, Mäenpää had already made 145 league appearances throughout his career, and was looking to move back to a Veikkausliiga following Mariehamn's relegation last season.
There were just two outgoings in July. First, long-time servant Bruno Rodrigues joined Portuguese lower league side Lusitânia Lourosa on a free transfer, having spent half of the past season away on loan. He was a brilliant servant for Peimari United and racked 87 appearances in all competitions since Koskinen joined the club, but couldn't find a way into the current senior team. All the best to him.
The big sale was Guido Claeys'. The Belgian teenage striker prodigy was sold to Italian giants Inter Milan for a Finnish club record sale of €2,000,000. Our chairman decided to get involved and pushed through the deal, even though I was negotiating a €2,500,000 deal with SSC Napoli which also included a 50% 'Next Sale' clause. But whatever, clearly our chairman knows best....
Peimari United Excelled In Europa League And Veikkausliiga Football In An Incredible Month Of July
Our good run in the league continued. Our first domestic opponent of the month was AC Oulu. We won the game at Liedon keskuskenttä by a 1-0 score. Young striker Jesper Santanen showed his quality once more as he scored the only goal of the game in the first half. The clean sheet was our eighth clean sheet in a row in the Veikkausliiga, an incredible record and a real sign of how far the team has come since last season's failed title chase.
UEFA Europa League
Next up in the league was a very tough game away to HJK. The reigning Veikkausliiga champions took the lead early on through the brilliant Wellington, but we responded quickly with a Mats Köhlert goal. We got a great slice of luck as HJK's Jordan scored an own-goal, handing us an invaluable 2-1 victory at the home of our biggest domestic rivals.
A home game against semi-local rivals FC Inter Turku followed. Our squad was heavily rotated following a second leg tie in Europe, meaning we were much weaker than we wanted to be for this game. We won narrowly, with Croatian teenage midfielder Silvio Tokic scoring from range late on to earn us a 1-0 win, with another clean sheet being a big bonus.
Our first non-win of the month in the Veikkausliiga came against KuPS. Despite Jesper Santanen scoring with less than ten minutes remaining, KuPS immediately responded from kick-off to deny us the three points, with Jiri Nissinen scoring a rocket of a shot from the edge of the area to tie the game at 1-1.
Our final Veikkausliiga game of the month was a trip to FC Ilves of Tampere. Silvio Tokic scored from range early on to give us the lead, but our opponents responded midway through the first half with a Diogo Tomás leveler. In a change from last season, we won the game late on with two goals. We won a penalty and, with seven minutes to go, Tokic scored his second of the game with a cool finish from twelve yards. There was plenty of time for new signing Pontus Engblom to come off the bench to score on his debut, immediately endearing himself to the Peimari faithful as we strolled to a 3-1 victory.
Our European journey began with a first qualifying round tie in the UEFA Europa League against Czech giants SK Slavia Praha. The first leg was at Eden in Prague, Czech Republic, and we certainly upset the odds with a major victory. Goals from Guido Claeys, Mats Köhlert and Moussa Faye gave us a three-goal lead inside the opening twenty minutes, but this lead was reduced to one with just under forty minutes remaining as Eero Hyökyvirta was unfortunate enough to score an own-goal, before Michael Ngadeu-Ngadjui scored from the penalty spot. Mats Köhlert scored his second of the game midway through the second half to give us a comfortable cushion again, as we then battled the game out to win 4-2.
The return leg against SK Slavia Praha was far more comfortable. Despite not playing at our actual home stadium due to capacity regulations, we made Kupittaan jalkapallostadion a formidable place to play at with a comfortable win. Mats Köhlert was on target early on to set the tone, and Moussa Faye scored twice on either side of a Slavia goal to give us a 3-1 win on the night, as we strolled through with a 7-3 aggregate victory.
The second qualifying round saw us come up against FK Vojvodina, with the first leg away from home. It was tough, with the Serbian SuperLiga side proving a tough team to break down at Karadjordje. Moussa Faye was our hero of the night, scoring two incredible goals from twenty yards out early on to give us invaluable away goals. Vojvodina proved how much of a threat they were, halving the deficit in the first half through a Nemanja Vucic goal. However, we saw the rest of the game out to take home a 2-1 advantage.
FK Vojvodina brought their A-game to Kupittaan jalkapallostadion and showed their ability from the start. We had to be extremely resilient and we had to rely on the experise of goalkeeper Tornike Dzadzamia, as well as some luck with our woodwork being clattered twice, to see us through. Vojvodina scored late on as Dragan Simic squeezed a low shot beyond Dzadzamia, but they needed a second to go through due to our away goal advantage. However, we won the tie outright as Rasmus Holma scored in the sixth minute of stoppage time to earn us a 1-1 draw on the night, and a 3-2 aggregate win.
Player of the Month
Moussa Faye Was Peimari United's Star Player During July 2022
Moussa Faye was our hero in July. The Senegalese midfielder was an absolute superstar in our Europa League qualifiers, scoring crucial goals in three of the fixtures that we played. Despite picking up an injury in the first leg of the second qualifying round against FK Vojvodina, Faye scored five and assisted another in a very successful month for our best player.
Moussa Faye's Monthly Stats
PotM Awards: 2
Fouls Committed: 3 (0.6 per game)
Fouls Against: 1 (0.2 per game)
Yellow Cards: 0
Red Cards: 0
Shots On Target Ratio: 66.67% (6/9)
Dribbles Completed: 2 (0.4 per game)
Key Passes: 9 (1.8 per game)
Pass Completion Ratio: 87.38% (180/206)
Headers Won: 5 (1 per game)
Average Rating: 8.12
Key Tackles: 1 (0.2 per game)
Tackles Won Ratio: 92.31% (12/13)
Interceptions: 5 (1 per game)
Assistant Manager's Report|
Wage: €575 p/w (Until: 30/11/2024)
Peimari United Were Ten Points Clear At The Top Of The Table With Eleven Games Remaining
Majestic. We were majestic. Our defensive record was, by far and wide, the best in the league, and we were ten points clear of second placed SJK, after two thirds of the season. We still had plenty of work to do, but it looked more and more likely that we were going to win the league title.
Peimari Had A Tough Set Of Games Against Young Boys To Look Forward To In August
In terms of Veikkausliiga football, August was a big month. We had the opportunity to effectively wrap up the title with four big games. The away trip to SJK was the tasty one, with them sitting in second place. We were hopefully we could finish off their threat to us.
In terms of UEFA Europa League football, we had a third qualifying round against Swiss giants BSC Young Boys to look forward to. The first leg was to be played at Wankdorf in Bern, Switzerland, with the return leg at our home-not-home of of Kupittaan halkapallostadion in Turku, Finland. We were up against an incredibly tough challenge. The most we hoped for was to snatch one or two away goals and have something to play for in the second leg. But our preparation was to win every battle on the pitch. That was our aim, as perfectionists.
| Young Boys is a big team. We're in no doubt that we're the underdogs, but these are the games we want to be involved in.
| Dzadzamia has proven himself to be a top-class shot-stopper, with his performance against Vojvodina only proving his capabilities.
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