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FM 21 - The Burnley revolution

Journey to Greatness..
Started on 2 November 2020 by Dave_Finny
Latest Reply on 1 April 2021 by TheLFCFan
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Nightmare November


November starts off fairly routinely with a 1-0 Vs newly promoted Brentford

Then on the 6th we face a daunting trip to Old Trafford to face Man Utd

The lads all seem bit groggy getting on the bus, and it may have been they were up all night watching fireworks or eating toffee apples, but needless to say we do not start with a bang, nor a fizz, a crack or even a f*cking whimper ....

We get dismantled like some horrific scene from the wonderful Dion Dublins homes under the hammer -

It gets to half time and i plead with the ref......



He doesn't stop it and it finishes 8-0



We become the 6th team in Prem history to be beaten 8-0, Joining Sunderland, Villa, Wigan, Watford and Sheff Wed to suffer the same fate!

We are as delicate as any human leaving the house early morning after a strong vindaloo, but start well at Chelsea before another instalment of Burnley late goals club goes live and we fold..


We are then Garbage V's Leeds (who are 17th) and then the month end is compounded by this


In summary, not a good month ... not a good month at all.


December now has more focus on it than ever - i need to stop the mini rot !

December Tinsel and Triumphs


To get back on the horse, in a pivotal month as December always is in the premier league, we must first negotiate A tricky Spurs tie without James Maddison

I keep the formation the same (4-2-3-1) but play wit more discipline and play Ashley Westwood in a ball winning midfield role.

This works, and we put Spurs to bed

2-1

Next, onto 3 winnable games Vs Villa, Newcastle and Fulham

This translates to....
2-1
1-1
1-0

This is great, We shoot right up the table and (due to the cup draw) leaves me with a double header Vs West Ham to finish the year and start 2022



My ever increasing momentum hits a huge Jordan Pickford related speed bump


I only have Bailey Peacock Farrell as deputy ... (I don't believe in 3 keepers)

I act swiftly, and get an offer accepted for a familiar face a Turf Moor


Joe doesn't however make it for the next game Vs West Ham

however i play a really "defensive defence" and play keep ball to frustrate the hammers, this also shields Bailey Peacock Farrell and we get out 1-0 winners

I then get round to opening my christmas cards!
The real present I want though is a fit again Pickford


I can't complain though and at game 19 I sit in a more than respectable position in the league, and without my star playmaker I have had an unbeaten December. After the train wreck that was November Ive more than got back on the horse.


Ive only concede two goals as well , which aids the goal difference from November
What a month! You're showing your potential now.
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New Years Eve..


Much better than going to the pub to shake hands with people I won't see for another 364 days I take some time out to Appreciate the main man


Chris Wood is named as Oceana footballer of the year, and rightly so .... look at those stats


I spend the remainder of the New Years Eve looking through players with contracts running down, with Central Midfield (defensively biased) being where I want to bolster, with Ashley Westwood and Josh Brownhill being my only real options, with Phillippe Sandler not progressing at the rate I expected.

I make offers for a few with contracts expiring,

Renato Augusto - Not interested
Sami Kedhira - too Expensive (and realistically too old)

I do find a Chap who fits the bill, and is really young to fit the boards vision in July Sandro Tonali will be joining the mighty Clarets



He wants to be a Star man so Ive had to give him some big wages, only time will tell.

Due to my league position, we redress expectations


Also, before Tonali's arrival, I feel another midfielder could be needed, and I try and capitalise on my good position in the league by going for players a little out of my league so to speak (See Peter Shilton below!!)


I put the feelers out for Aaron Ramsey who Ive always admired, but he's not interested, I look at The Ox at Liverpool but he wants Champions league footy. I look at Fellaini..... but I know I'm better than that ..

I do manage to snaffle this great player though in


I think he arrival of these two will mean a bit of a clear out in the summer, Sandler & Westwood certainly.
The board are backing me a little more due to my position and these expectation changes.

I think their confidence is buoyed by 6Million dropping in the bank off Nick Popes transfer


As I settle into New years day ready for West Ham i the cup, my first coffee of 2022 is soured by this


How dare anyone bid for Chris Wood! I slap 45 million on his head before rushing out the door to get to the London Stadium

Pickford hasn't recovered and Joe Hart hasn't arrived... West Hams side look massive and all through the warm up they are crossing crossing and crossing .. This FA Cup tie may prove more problematic than first thought!!

A Strange old Month


A bad start to the month as West Ham bully us and knock us out of the cup - I did fancy a cup run as well. but Im not overly disheartened as I'm going well in the league


I then Get news Pompey fancy Phillippe Sandler - and I put a buy back clause in the deal and let him go.


Due to a great December, and three clean sheets in league I pick up a draw vs Everton and two wins Vs West Brom and Arsenal gives me this great news !

10 unbeaten is ideal.

The two Draws at then end of the run Vs Sheff Utd &Wolves frustrate me as I thought they were winnable - and the month ends with a loss V's Norwich which annoys me immensely.


I spend the last day of Jan looking through the transfer list, again my heady optimism means I go for players out of might league and I get shunned by plenty...

then at 12 noon my phone rings.....

Madrid have accepted the offer

He wants to talk to us

We agree the deal




The club shop goes mental - the papers go mental - the fans go mental

What an end to a strange month

I get up February the 1st just to check ... .and I wasn't dreaming

UP THE BURNLEY REVOLUTION

The wheels start wobbling


Feb only has 3 games, City, Bournemouth and Brighton So I see my target as a traffic light month with one of each assumed and ideally required to push for the heady heights of top 10 ( )

This doesn't go to plan with two losses to begin the month, and due to my bad end to Jan ( ) My 10 games unbeaten turns immediately to:


I get the lads in to have a chat before training in the morning about us needing to become more focussed starting with the weeks training on the run up to Brighton Away

Well that F*cking never worked



Two First choice centre halves - gone within hours of each other !!

I knock training on the head for the rest of the day, and we go to Brighton with Ben Mee coming in to partner Kehrer in centre half - i am not optimistic

I explain to the lads we need to get something from this game


We go a goal down in 15 mins
Then we get a goal disallowed byVAR
James Maddison
Gets me back on level terms

Dwight McNeil then hobbles off before half time and I go into the second half needing a miracle, I tell the lads to calm down and the result will come .....


Chris Wood Enamours himself even more to the Burnley faithful with a screamer


A well needed win


And that's February gone...... and holy S*it - Im still 8th

Dare I get everyones Passports renewed ??
Let's hope you will have to get these passports sorted!
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2020-12-17 19:50#279963 ScottT : Let's hope you will have to get these passports sorted!

I'll get to the next update later today that finishes off the season....last few days have been manic for work but ill get it done later so you'll know later on mate. Thanks for reading

March-ing to mediocrity


Well - Lets get those passports back in the cupboard lads....

A relatively expected loss Vs Liverpool is then followed by a drab 1-0 Vs Bournemoth who are scrapping for their lives


A win Vs brighton doesn't help, and as we enter April I know I need to basically win every game to get into the top 6, the only other route being if the top teams win everything so 7th comes into play



April goes pretty well, but if I'd have turned the Draw V's West Ham into a win and a horrendous performance Vs Brentford into a win to match the great results Vs Liverpool and United I would have had a chance in my final two games, but I don't !


The board tell me however, I've met the goals of the club two years early, so I aim to consolidate this next year and go on a cup run.

Another pleasing bit of info , my vindication to let Nick Pope go and bring in Jordan Pickford - granted he's got arguably a better defence in front of him but hey ho...



Onto my final games Vs Brighton and Bournemouth

May


A little bit of a subdued end to the season, With one win and a loss to finish the year


The Bournemouth game was winnable, but Bournemouth pip me


VAR Saves Bournemouth from relegation but does do me out of another goal for Edouard, who seems to be getting a bit more confidence


The table looks like this when all the dust settles, I don't make it into Europe as Everton get the place from their FA Cup Exploits.


Some good results and some bad, but we can look on the season with pride and i think the building blocks are now in place ... maybe just maybe .. .Next Year is Burnley's year.

Season sum up

From the best 11 from the year I now know fullbacks are my priority.


After being the initial budgets at a relatively lofty 50million


This is helped by my Shrewdness and flogging a lot of Shirts.


Man United want 100 million for Brandon Williams, but I thankfully get them to extend his loan for another year which helps as he can play both sides and is absolutely RAPID


From the club awards and team of the year, I have to go in for Marcus Alonso and Chelsea accept 10million for him Which is a steal in this climate



The rest of the signings have come in and slotted in well.


I think a mini clearout in the summer is needed - I think maybe 4 out and 2 in, I would have kept the 4 but, with no European cup, I don't need a massive squad.

Anyway.... onto the transfer list !!

Transfers and Pre Season


As alluded to in my previous post, a mini clearout is due

I let Ben Mee leave on a free, break 1million profit on Rasmus Falk Ashley Westwood is put on the loan and transfer list, and then I have my first Dilemma of the window, Fulham coming in with 10 million for Josh Brownhill. I decide to let him go as some good players are dropping onto the transfer list and I think I can get one or two in to make my midfield better - and I can play Maddison slightly deeper if needed

Brownhill goes with my best wishes - and I immediately go in for Eric Dier who is on the loan list





Man City Accept ,..... but apparently Eric isn't too keen on the bright lights of Burnley




I then receive a derogatory offer for James Maddison - I promptly tell Wolves to go away



I MUST REMEMBER - BUY QUALITY NOT QUANTITY in the window, Historically in saves I always wend up with a bunch of mediocre players and get sacked 3rd season!

My three free signings are very good and are better than Mee Falk and Brownhill so that's a good start (and apart from Sign on fees, nothing spent)



The fixtures are then released.... and my first 5 look grim and in the words of Graham Taylor

" do I not like that"




Anyway, onto pre season - before I go I put Matt Lowton and Charlie Taylor on the transfer list as I have a left wingback in Alonso and 2 right wingbacks in Passalack and Williams ( who can cover the left too

A lot of MLS teams come in for Westwood too - So I potentially will lose another three average players.

I think I do a relatively good job in covering all of those positions off with the THE MOST EXCITING MAN IN FOOTBALL


Oh hang on - that should read THE MOST EXCITING MAN IN FOOTBALL

Joking aside Milner is still a workhorse and will certainly fit in with the plan.

Arsenal come in for my assistant which I see as a decent reflection of the job Im doing - I beg him to stay and like some soap opera wife .... and he promptly does !!


Pre season goes very well with the highlight being dispatching Inter Milan 3-0



In the midst of this win Vs a European Giant, I notice Christian Eriksen looking Irked at being subbed, I keep my eye on this as he could add the flair to add to my increasingly talented front 5 of Bale, Maddison,Mcneil, Wood and ...... My latest addition on Loan


A bit of a loose cannon and a flair extraordinaire but he may help turn last years draws to wins, and with Tonali and Milner as holding players, alone with Dahoud as a box to boxer, I think I can tae the risk on him (especially on loan)

The night before the season starts I am dealt a double blow, one expected, one not so much .....

No:1

My main centre half out for 6 weeks.... balls. Tarkowski will come in and I'm sure do a great job.

The more likely blow was

No:2



out of contract superstar Neymar doesn't fancy a trial in Sunny Burnley - The cheek of it !


Onto the first of my Tricky 5 Vs Liverpool - and although I don't envisage a win, I think my lineup stands more of a chance than most !




I tell the lads we are aiming for mid table..... although without sounding a bit Hitler-ish - Europe is the goal
Is there a single Burnley fan who would be "unsure about the signing" of Gareth Bale, even at 32 years old? :D
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2020-12-30 12:20#280303 Harleygator : Is there a single Burnley fan who would be "unsure about the signing" of Gareth Bale, even at 32 years old? :D

They are probably unsure about his 135k a week. Its only a 12 month deal too.....

Hopefully flogs a few shirts !!!
You are building a very talented side here with the most impressive signing certainly being Milner ;). The club is looking strong and I bet the board are happy they didn't give you the boot when relegation was looming in season one. With some of the talent you have now, a European push is looking possible!
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