So this is my first ever Football Manager story and having only played the game a handful of times I am hoping I have a succesful experiance. My decision to take on QPR was clear and simple. Firstly because financally they seem to look healthy and secondly I believe they have the capability to build a bright future amongst Europe's Elite.... Well thats my plan anyway! So anyway I hope you find it interesting and hope you decide to follow us.
So to start I am just going to educate you on a little bit of Club Background,
First thing to sort out was choosing my Season Expectations, after viewing my squad and funds I was quite confident that I could reach a Top Half finish but to play it safe on my first season and to make myself look good to the Board I chose the lowest Expectation which was to 'Avoid Relegation'. I wasn't too worried with the Transfer and Wage Budget's that were offered as I had decided that I would avoid signing anyone and concentrate more on Selling & Loaning. I wanted to avoid a Real Life QPR Team where too many new players couldn't gel properly together.
So there you have the introduction to My First FM Story, hope you enjoyed it and for the next post I will be sharing my Tactics, any Transfer News and of course Pre-Season Progress.
So to start with I decided to offload all my Staff except for Mark Bowen as in my eyes with his experiance and attributes he was still very useful, also he made a good Defence Coach. I got looking straight away and finally settled with a new backroom of staff that I felt could really improve QPR over the years. I then moved onto offloading some Youth Players who I felt would not be able to make the big step up to the First Team.
On to my 2 Chosen Formations for the season. The first would be a 4-2-3-1 Formation and with the players at my disposal I felt this would be a very succesful Tactic. I like Responsible Attacking football. The Second Formation would be a simple 4-4-2. Can't go wrong with this solid Tactic. Attachment 283055
I do have some transfer to announce which I know goes against my word of not buying anyone in this Transfer Window but this player was a must. At 34 (I think) he still had bags of talent and experiance which could help out my team massively and also help tutor my youngsters. He enjoyed his best playing days at Real Madrid. When I found Guti on a free I couldn't believe it, more so that he signed for me over 5 other bigger clubs for a small wage of 9K a week. Bargain.
Onto Pre-Season now and my first game was away against Bala Town, a small Welsh Team. The game finished up 6-1 to the good. A great start to my QPR Career. A lot of positives, firstly with my 4-2-3-1 Formatiom, it worked exactly how I wanted it too. 21 shots at goal and an overal possesion of 68%. Also that a handful of youngsters came into the game and performed very well, especially Max Ehmer. He looks to be a decent future talent with the right guidence and his goal in the game was taken very well. Cisse got 3 for himself and seems to enjoy the role of Lone Poacher, Jamie Mackie also scored along with an own goal by there player. I know it is only a Welsh Team and they got a goal but as my squad has only played their first game together I feel confident I will gather some very good results.
That wraps up this post and I now look forward to finishing up the long winded Pre-Season and really get started with the important games. Thanks for reading. Next post coming soon...
Last edited by TheMoroccanAB; 16/11/2012 at 12:08 AM.
The two Friendlies that I wanted to really test my squad on was against Malaga and Valencia. Against Malaga things started great for us, we went 2-0 up in the space of 4 minutes. Cisse with both. At full time the game finished 3-1. Against Valencia it was tougher game but even as the result finished 3-2 to them. A few youngsters and second string players started the game but it was that man cisse who came off the bench in the second-half to start the come back. Those two friendlies showed our fans that we were on route to prove the doubters that we could really have a succesful season.
So that is that Pre-season wise. Very pleased with the results especiall the last two. Transfer wise I didn't spend a penny with just the one player In on a free whilst we had a few players leave us on loan and sales. This was good business for the club as my Wage Budget was extremely low and so was the Transfer Budget.
So before I kick-off my Season these are my targets for my first Premier League Season;
- Finish in the Top Half of the Table
- Compete well in the F.A. Cup & Carling Cup
- Improve the club Financially for Next Seasons Transfer & Wage Budgets
I believe these are all achieveable. Personally I would like to reach a Continental Finish so to gain more income from T.V, Sponsorship, Bonuses, etc. Best chance of doing this would be to win the Carling Cup I think, so therefore we shall give it a very good go.
So it looks like I have quite a tough 2 months of football coming up. I have complete faith in my team to get the best results possible but of course we will be tested.
So August was kicked off with a trip to the Molineux for the Barclay's Premier League opener. It was crucial that I got a Win, or Draw at least, because that can always be a good Morale boost to kickstart a season. I was very sure what formation I would use and who in it for this first game. Anyway here is how that game panned out;
The game started exactly how I had hoped. Shaun Wright-Phillips grabbed a goal in the space of 52 seconds. Great run & cross by Jamie Mackie fell kindly to the unmarked Phillips who calmlyplaced it into the bottom right corner of the goal. A goal that early could either be good or bad and as planned my formation began to control the game. We had plenty of possesion but no shots at goal worth shouting about. On the half hour mark Wolves began to get back into the game and things didnt get any better for us.
The Second Half kicked off and it was 3 minutes into the half that things went very bad for us. Kevin Doyle was released through on goal and with a goal scoring opportunity opening up a foolish tackle from Anton Ferdinand meant he saw the Premier Leagues first Red Card. Not what I wanted on an opening game. Wolves were now dominating the game, carving open chance after chance. My back-up formation of 4-4-2 was being tested to the limit. 5 minutes to go and wolves have a freekick on the edge of the box which draws Paddy Kenny into an amazing save but only for the rebound to go in...... but wait! A quick glance across the pitch and the flag is up against Doyle. He was deemed offside and as the replay shown, the assistant was spot on. I sighed a massive relief and as Referee looked at his watch the final whistle was blown and it couldn't have came any sooner.
Final Score: Wolverhampton Wanderers 0 - 1 Queens Park Rangers
So it was a nervy opening day for us but with it came our first 3 points of the season.
The next games came thick and fast and I am very proud to say my team were able to survive the two months unbeaten. If you can remember we had 3 very tough games against Liverpool, Tottenham and Manchester City. Firstly Liverpool was game which we were predicted to do very badly in, instead we went 2 - 0 up in the first half thanks to Cisse. Liverpool returned the favour in the second-half whilst Jamie Mackie put us ahead, only in the last few minutes to my disappointment did Liverpool grab an equaliser. Tottenham was a similar game with Hall and Taarabt giving us a two goal lead but it was only until later on that we fell victim to the late goals by Bale & Defoe. Man City was a totally different game as to my suprise they absolutely dominated us except we secured a massive result of 3-1. I was truely shocked with this result as City were 1st in the League going into this match and we were 10th. A very impressive performance from an old City Icon was all we needed to defeat them. Phillips grabbed a goal and both assists for Mackie's goals.
Cup wise we are looking very good, as we easily defeated Palace even with Traore being sent off. The next round would prove to be more difficult with a Home game against long time rivals Fulham. A Home draw was promising but still they were a good side with a lot of useful players in the form of Ruiz, Duff and Dembele. So you could imagine my reaction to us winning 3-1, great result against a tough Rival. Next draw offered an even more promising chance of reaching the League Cup Final. Another Home Draw against lesser opponents Sheffield United.
The Barclays Premier League stood as shown below..... I was happy with those two months as not only were we in the top half of the league and unbeaten but we had also out played a few very good teams where we had predictions to lose. So to summarise I know its early days but we are right on course to achieving our 3 Targets and also I am very glad to see that my formation has become 100% fluid in every aspect with the team & that it is achieving outstanding results.
Quick Note: Avoid conceding too many goals and be on the look out for a couple of Defencive Talents in the January Transfer Window.
These two months of fixtures looked to be slightly better for us, with just Chelsea being seen as the real threat. As you can see we racked up a respectable 11pts out of a possible 18pts. West Brom was a disapointing result but to be honest they deserved it, we didnt play very well at all. The Chelsea result was a good one, Massive Rivals and favourites to win the game and we actually outplayed them for large parts of the game. Paddy Kenny was very impresive in goal, he earnt a massive 9.1 rating by the end of the game. Jamie Mackie is having an incredible season so far, he has scored 8 goals and assisted 4 which makes him and Shaun Wright Phillips two of the best Attacking Wingers in the League at the present time. He was rated as being the fourth best Left Winger in the squad at the beginning of the season and now my Assistant rates him as the best. I managed to achieve one of my target notes from the previous post, which was to reduce the amount of goals we were conceding and I was happy to see we only conceded 4 goals in the League.
Onto the Cup run now and I am delighted to say we have now reached the Semi-Final of the League Cup. We were offered a great chance of progressing when we played Sheffield United in the 4th Round. We played confidently and with some second string players and youngsters mixed into the squad we won 4-0 with Adel Taarabt having a superb game. The Quater Final offered a tougher task but again we defied the odds to win 2-1. Blackburn played well for the first 20 mins but some great play by Jay Bothroyd meant we went 1-0 up and then soon after he grabbed a goal for himself. I was very glad to see him come into the squad and play so well as Cisse has been far from impressive so far his season. Anyway the Semi-final draw was out of Stoke, Wolves or Arsenal/Everton (Still had to play each other). I personally wanted Wolves or Stoke as the away leg on these two wouldn't be as bad as travelling to the Emirates or Goodison Park. Just as the drawswent our way in the previous Rounds we were handed another draw where we had a very good chance of reaching the Final. QPR vs Stoke was the draw whilst Arsenal/Everton vs Wolves. My aim of reaching european football could be achieved a lot sooner then planned thanks to this fantastic cup run.
Here is the Barclays Premier League Table so far. As you can see we have moved up one place since lasupdate and plus because of our uccesful Cup run we have also got 2 games in hand which (if we win both) could see us climb to 4th or 5th position. Fulham and Swansea have continued to over-achieve whilst Chelsea are having a very disapointing season as they look more like Relegation Candidates and also look at my Semi-final opponents. I couldn't be happier.
Here is my Team's form so far. The top 3 are the same still, although Jamie Mackie and Jay Bothroyd traded places. Paddy Kenny was the most improved player which was really good to see whilst Cisse had fell down in form. Looking forward to seeing Fitz Hall return from injury as he was on fire before he got injured.
~ Offload Cerney, Murphy, Gabbidon, Guti and Dyer. Guti will be pure profit thankfully.
~ Invest in a young GK Prospect to replace the aging 2 I want to sell and to succeed the impressive Paddy Kenny.
~ Invest in a younger Defensive Prospect to replace Gabbidon and to challenge for first team places.
Next Fixtures for December are as follows;
December looks good financial wise as we have 3 games schedule for TV so that means we gain some TV rights funds. Manchester Uted and Arsenal will prove to be the main tests of the month whilst the other games should be all win-able. Being at home against these two will be a massive boost as so far our home form has been very impressive agains the big teams. Fulham and Swansea could be tough games as long as their form in the League continues, so therefore I will have to make sure we don't get complacent.