So, As I always do, I played my first game on FM with my beloved Birmingham City. I have spoke to a few friends and saw a few stories and I haven't seen a first season promotion story. Well, I just about did it, it was hard and came down to the last penalty kick of the play off final. I am in my third season now, still in the premier league, but I will do my best to re-cap my first two seasons leading on to this.
I took over and as everybody knows, you have next to nothing to work with. Instantly I tried to offload Zigic, which didn't happen. So I tried a few other players...
In August I sold Wade elliott to to Motherwell for 110k and Robinson wouldn't sign a new deal so left fairly soon.
I signed Bolo Zenden, Mikael Forssell, Cristiano zanetti and Fabio Grosso, for much needed experience and depth, on cheap contracts. I signed Craig Cardner (sunderland), Dean Parrett (Spurs) and Joao Carlos (liverpool) On loan.
With the wage budget slightly stretched, I kept on trying to re-negotiate contracts with all of the players, i.e. Ibanez down to 7k King down to 8k. This took a while, but there were only a few agents/players who wouldn't budge. This was key to the season being a success without the club losing more money.
Unfortunately I cannot find the league table at Christmas, so I'll talk about my january transfers and then show the end of the season...
I loaned Peter Lovenkrands out to Sheff Wednesday, for half his wages, which did help and I sold colin Doyle to West Brom for 160k.
I signed Brad Jones from Liverpool for 22k and Rodney strasser from AC Milan for 190k at least half of that payable over 24 months. I also signed Eirik johansen from Man City for 5k as a youth and back up (Pretty pointless signing really!)
It was looking comfortable up until March hot on the heals of second (Wolves walked away with the title) but i hit a very inconsistent run of form and ended up finishing 5th with 73 points, scoring 74 and conceding 51.
I beat Derby 2-1 away and then 1-0 at home in the play off semi finals (unable to bring up the match report)
So then I had Burnley in the play off final, which with the help of a certain Forssell (didn't score many, but all goals were important ones) I drew 2-2. It went to penalties and they missed their fifth, up steps Paul Caddis and shoots Birmingham City into the premier league!
I actually couldn't believe what had happened after hearing about how hard the game is with Birmingham, possibly my greatest ever accomplishment on FM... Staying in the premier league might be harder.
The club was taken over in January, no extra funds available, but debts were cleared by the end of the season.
Season Player review -
Top Goal scorer - Marlon King - 23 goals in 41 games.
Player of the season - Curtis davies
Ibanez and Davies were brilliant at the back, Caddis was solid on the right and Murphy on the left
Spector was brilliant back up all over the back and midfield, but the best midfielder had to be strasser, bringing a bit of quality to the game with precise passing, high work rate, great tackling and popping up with a few goals.
Chris Burke was a big let down, in both seasons, but couldn't sell him.
Right so onto the prem...