I've been reading these Forums for a while; and having got FM13 last night, have been inspired to write my own story - on the back of reading the 'Aitor Herrera' story from FM12. The club I have chosen is Borussia Moenchengladbach, largely because I had a save with them in FM12 in which I took them to the top of the Bundesliga. The Challenge with them has been complicated somewhat by the fact they lost Reus and Dante in the transfer window, however I love Luuk De Jong, Ter Stegen and Alvaro Dominguez IRL so this seems like a natural choice to start with - just for note; we started with about £500k in resources; which after a while I fully piled into the Wage Budget as there was a lack of talent available for this in the market - with the overall Wage Budget eventually coming to £525k p/w. For the time being; I will simply be posting a description of general activity & results etc; as opposed to actual 'story' like form.
Welcome, to Borussia Moenchengladbach.
As a man of wildly football dreams, it was an honour to be appointed Gladbach manager - with our targets for the first season being Mid-Table mediocrity as told by the board. The only condition with my appointment was that I had been forced to promise attracitve football. This objective may seem slightly low for a team which secured Champions League Football last season however, a revolving door had occured over the summer and the squad was much changed - with the introductions of Granit Xhaka and Luuk De Jong most notably making up for the departure of Marco Reus to Dortmund.
July & August
First things first, having turned up at the club I got used to squad (having bought in many trialists; none of whom we would sign due to mediocrity) with a number of friendlies as highlighted below:
Pre-Season, in terms of matches went exceptionally well - however this was not necessarily the case in the Transfer Market. Having reviewed the playing staff two things became clear a) The defense was aging; and not necessarily of great depth although Jantschke & Dominguez gave hope and b) We would be relying on a number of inexperienced players this season. However, largely our forays into the Transfer Market were failed as our main target Royston Drenthe chose to go to another Bundesliga club (Freiburg I think) whilst we could only secure Cristian Zanetti (a 36 y/o DM) as a permanent signing of sufficent quality - mainly to replace Thorben Marx (a £14k wage drop) whilst we search for young talent abroad. However, the loan signings for our defence should prove useful for the future. We also made a number of staff changes; to 'aid' our development.
Therefore, this was our Squad Report (oddly the stars seem to correspond to Potential, whilst the players are listed in Current Ability order):
The Season Begins
August's Competitive Fixtures
Erfut 2 v 5 Gladbach
(German Cup 1st Round)
Scorers: Juan Arango, Patrick Herrmann, Alvaro Dominguez, Luuk De Jong, Igor De Camargo
Our player of the Match: Patrick Herrmann (8.2)
We played a fairly strong team here; and whilst they scored two late goals after Tolga Cigerci was sent-off, this was a good start to the season.
Dynamo Kiev 1 v 0 Gladbach
(3rd Quali Round CL)
Our Player of the Match: Ter Stegen (7.1)
This was a disappointing performance from the boys; playing our fluid 4-2-3-1 formation we had developed in Pre-Season we passed abysmally and were lucky to still have a sniff going into the 2nd Leg.
Dusseldorf 2 v 0 Gladbach
Our Player of the Match: Ter Stegen (7.2)
A horrible start to our season; we conceded two early goals and created very few chances. Considering they were promoted last season; we should have done better than this.
Gladbach 1 v 0 Dynamo Kiev
(Gladbach win 5-3 on Penalties)
(3rd Quali Round CL Leg 2)
Scorers: Juan Arango
Our Player of the Match: Ter Stegen (7.6)
Considering the aptitude we had shown for passing in the previous matches, we changed to a direct 4-4-2 for this match; but ironically it was a 'tippy-tappy' goal on the edge of the area that got us back into the match. We were solid defensively in this match; and I was delighted to get through the group stage of the CL on penalties considering how undeserved it was - but concerns remain about our lack of attacking potency.
It was marvelous news for the club that we got the £7M which comes with Group Stage football and that as the 'unseeded' team we went through - however being the 4th Seeds for the Group Stage draw would hit us hard into the group of death: