Feburary 1st 2020
Realistically a budget of 22 Million is not going to stretch for what I need which is:
First Team RB
First Team Forward
First Team Central Midfielder
I will see if I can wheel and deal at least 2 of the above over the line.
Found a suitable Forward target that would be a considerable improvement of Jolinton for only 12.5M and what do you know. (Michy Batshuayi FYI)
Crystal Palace & Man Utd are after him also so I guess my number 1 target is gone already.
Tottenham (H) - 0 Points Predicted
Danny Rose is ineligible for selection for this game meaning that Jetro Williams will start with Paul Dummet on the bench. Isaac Hayden also starts instead of Bentaleb.
As expected Tottenham started the game really well putting us under considerable pressure and in the 20th minute they turned the domination into a 0 - 1 lead thanks to Son. The pressure was soaked up until the half time break.
Newcastle started the second half better but were vulnerable to the break and thanks to 2 brilliant saves from Dubravka kept us in the game for the time being at least as you could tell the goal was coming. 60 minutes in and the fatigue was setting in with the number of games we have played without any rotation. I had to make 3 changes in which Paul Dummet had to come on out of position playing in RB. Richie came off for youngster Yannick Toure and Jolinton was replaced with Dwight Gale. The substitutions really turned the tide of the game for us, we were passing well and breaking on the counter well.
Shelvey hit a long ball across to Toure he managed to cut inside with a little bit of luck and struck it high into the top right hand corner 1 - 1 after being on the pitch for less than 2 minutes. The game from this moment was end to end, Newcastle never really looked that threatening after the equaliser.
We are still in 14th place in the League with a 2 point gap to the bottom of the league. 3 points against Aston Villa could put it as high as 11th. 10th would require a 3 goal swing against Sheffield United.
Tottenham (A) - FA Cup 3rd Round
Danny Rose is still ineligible for selection so Jetro Willams keeps his place in LB, Larao is in need of a rest so Javi Manquillo can start in RB as the squad registration has allowed me to include him in the team again. Sean Longstaff will replace Shelvey in the middle of the park
The first half was very similar to the last game. We were under the cosh for large parts of it but did not show any of the same intent when breaking as with the last game. Lo Celso put Tottenham into the lead in the 23rd minute 1 - 0.
53 minutes in Dele Alli put Tottenham 2 - 0 up. Change was needed so i decided to try and replicate the same changes from the last game. Bentelab, Jolinton & ASM came off for Shelvey, Gayle and Toure. Hopefully another super sub moment on the cards but it's very unlikely. Toure had a header saved in the 75th minute. Tottenham seemed to hold back more and more during the 2nd half as such I really thought we might have snatched a late goal but wasn't to be. The game ended 2 - 0.
This really needs to get resolved one way or the other I am going to miss out on a very important transfer market for the club if not.
Takeover Update # 2
So the takeover is complete and I am worried about my job currently they will want to bring in their own manager surly. I will be informed of their decision shortly.
Transfer Market # 2
Still cannot place offers for players.
Aston Villa (A) - 3 Points Predicted
ASM pulled his abdominal muscle as such will be out for the next 2 weeks, this will allow the chance in the first team. I want to take a chance on the youngster as he has performed well coming off the bench in the last 2 games. Almiron is still out with a sprained knee ligament and is looking at another 2 weeks until he is back in light training. Danny Rose returns to the first team after being ineligible for the last 2 games.
I have a feeling that if I fail to win this game I will be out of a job so for the 4th time this season this is a must win game made even more important.
In a very drab affair Aston Villa were the only team that looked like scoring,
We remain in 14th still with 2 points above the relegation places. Still 3 points off 10th place. We just need to find a win from somewhere.
Message from the board
Somehow I have managed to keep hold of my job.
Transfer Market #3
I have placed an offer for:
Michy Batshuayi - 13.25M Accepted
Man Utd (A) - 0 Points Predicted
Lejeune starts in place of Lascelles in the only change to the draw against Aston Villa.
We really had our backs to wall in this one, 13 shots (3 on target). I'm really surprised we managed to bring it to half time 0 - 0. We barely hung on in the second half 30 shots in total against us (10) on target. Dubravka the only reason that we managed to hold onto a draw with 10 shots saved 8 of which were held onto.
We have now slipped down into 15th position but still have a 2 point safety net. The Gap to 10th is still only 3 points.
Everton (H) - 1 Point Predicted
I decided to make a tactical change for this one considering that both ASM and Almiron are both out injured and I don't want to rely on Toure out wide. 4 - 3 - 2 - 1 (4-3-3) . I ended up with Matty & Jolinton taking the AM positions just behind the striker Gayle. Krath went into RB and Lazaro in RM.
A real scrappy affair in the first half which only saw 3 shots on target for both sides. The deadlock was broken in the 22nd minute with a close range effort from Fabian Delph.
The second half picked up a little with end to end action with very little in the way of a final product. On the 78th minute Gayle was taken down which resulted in a penalty which Richie took and converted the chance into a goal. 1 - 1. Djibril Sidide was given his second yellow card of the game in the 85th minute and was sent off. Even with the extra man advantage we really struggled to capitalise on this even when given the orders to go very attacking.
Newcastle have moved down to 15th place but still have a 2 point gap to 19th. 10th place is now 3 points
away. We also have a better goal difference than 10th place also by 2 goals.
Michy Batshuayi signs on a 4 year deal I am hoping that he will improve the team with the lack of cutting edge in the final 3rd of the pitch. I cannot really find anyone else that would go straight into the first team with the loan signings of Danny Rose, Valentino Lazaro & Nabil Bentaleb and it’s very unlikely that we have the funds to purchase any of these as there is only 8M left in the budget.
Max Kilman signs on a 3 year deal from Wolves. He is a CB that can fill into the LB slot if needed. I paid 1.2 million for the player and for an English player is extremely cheap and can be used as a suitable backup option with the view to improving the 22 year old.
Kiril Despodov signes on a 4 year deal from Cagliari. He is an attacking Midfielder that can play either wing and will be a good backup option for either Almiron or ASM. I paid 4.8M for him at the age of 23. He is currently on loan at the moment and will not sign until the end of the season.
League Table 1st February 2020
Still very tight at the bottom of the table. West Ham are still bottom but are only 3 points away from us in 15th. The gap is closing towards the top with 3 points taking us up to 12 instead of 10th. We do however have a game in hand over some teams but that is against Chelsea so it’s not like it really going to make a difference.
We did manage to get to the target of 4 points from 12. Although we failed to win a game at all, in fact we have not won a game since 21th December against Wolves. Strangely enough I have not won a home game all season even before I started with the team in November.
4 games in February Chelsea is going to be tough to even get a draw out of it. Crystal Palace are currently 9th but have won 3 and lost 3 in the last 6 so their form is up and down. Wolves game has got to be the game where we record our first win at home, they have lost the last 4 games. Leicester is going to be another difficult game to get anything from. Prediction 4 points from 12. I think the game at Wolves is winnable and we may be able to snatch a win at Crystal Palace but more likely a draw.
I will see you next in the 1st March