FM19 | Youth Development | Lucky Leipzig’s Golden Generation

To add a bit of context to this piece, I’m currently managing RB Leipzig and I’m in my second season. After finishing a respectable 4th place in the league and reaching the Europa league final (but losing to PSG) I made some good additions to the squad including a transfer listed Reuben Loftus-Cheek, Benjamin Henrichs from Monaco and Donny Van de Beek from Ajax.

After the summer we set out on another season in the Bundesliga and to my surprise, we’ve done incredibly well and found ourselves top of the league at the mid-way point. After signing Rafinha on a free-transfer come the summer I continued the save. I was originally thinking of uploading my tactic, showing off how brilliant my team was but then came 29th February, 2020: I struck gold.

Christmas in February for my Leipzig side!

I’ve been lucky enough to have a son before in Football Manager, but this feeling was completely different. I realised quickly how lucky this was. I received a youth academy team of young starlets. It completely restructured my youth set-up and made me realise how good this bunch of kids could be if I put my mind to it. So this series of articles will follow the lives of 8 youngsters, either from my youth academy or brought in for less than 300k. I’m not expecting all of them to become world class, but I’m hoping a fair few of them will become regulars at my title-challenging side.

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Does Finishing Make a Difference in a Striker? | Football Manager Experiment

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As a manager, I always look for strikers with the highest finishing attribute and then assess their other attributes. However, I wonder what would happen if I created two identical players and only adjust their finishing attributes and see what the result is like.

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In my last article where I looked at age, which can be read here – Does Age Make a Difference in a Striker? | Football Manager Experiment. It was slightly difficult to create a conclusion on the statistics we discovered, so I have tried to adjust this experiment so we can create a replica in terms of findings.

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Dynamo Project FM19: Portrait of a Striker – Guide to Scoring More

I’m going to start by making a bold claim that Luka Jovic is the best offensive striker in the world right now. There is a lot of buzz around him lately with the likes of Barcelona, Chelsea and Man City linked with his name. This has as much to do with the undeniable scoring ability as the promise of future potential in this 20 year old from Serbia. His wonderkid status in Football Manager 2019 is greatly merited because simply put no other forward has the same combination of key attributes and potential (especially after the Winter Update). At the start of the game, there are a few better strikers with much bigger names but none have his youth or potential. Naturally when looking for a player to perfectly highlight the archetypal Striker, I turned to Luka. His example will allow me to showcase all the attributes needed by a forward to develop into a goal-machine. In general, if you are interested in getting more goals from your special player, this is the guide for you. Also, I will recreate Frankfurt’s brilliant 3-5-2 with Luca as its main scorer.

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Players of the 90’s: Alan Shearer

When you think of goalscorers in the Premier League, so many names come to mind, we have been blessed over the years with an abundance of goalscoring talent in the form of players like Teddy Sheringham, Les Ferdinand, and more recently players like Sergio Aguero and Mo Salah have all shown us their remarkable goalscoring skills.

But in the 1990’s, and even into the new millennium, there was only one man who was tearing up the records and carving his name into the very fabric of English football itself. He has a legacy that will stand the test of time as one of the all time greats of this game, I am of course talking about Alan Shearer. Continue reading

Stat Analysis | Who is the Best Goalscorer in the Premier League

With the race for the golden boot tighter than ever, I decided to crunch some numbers to see who is the best goalscorer in the Premier League. In this post I’ll outline the stats I used, who is best in each category of my analysis and then try to predict what the final goals tally will look like. I took the 13 top scoring players in the PL this season as the sample. First let’s look at a number of stats comparing players performance this season to last.

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Who should each Premier League team sign – The Finale

Since the last article a lot has occurred again in football. If you missed the first one it is here, and the second here.  France won the world cup, Ronaldo did the unthinkable and Richarlison is about to move to Everton for £50 million? What would you prefer, half a Ronaldo or Richarlison… anyway, as expected there will again be controversial views such as one club to break the transfer record? I hope you enjoy!

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Dictate The Game’s 2018 World Cup Team of the Tournament

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Well, its all over for another 4 years, and congratulations to France on winning a well fought contest against a plucky Croatia side, coming away with a 4-2 win and ending their 20 year wait for another World Cup success.

Many players impressed during the course of this summer, and there is no doubt a lot of them will use this platform to secure big moves for themselves or bigger contracts where they are.

But who are the 11 players who have stood out during the tournament? We have put together our Team of the Tournament.

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One To Watch – Thomas Meunier (Belgium)

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Overview of player

Thomas Meunier is a 26 year old right back that plays for Paris Saint Germain in France’s Ligue 1 division. Meunier was brought in to PSG from Belgium side Club Brugge on the 3rd of July 2016 for a fee reported to be 7 million euros. Prior to his move, Thomas had admitted doubts on whether he would lack playing time at PSG. This proved evident during his first season. His first competitive appearance for PSG came on the 6th of August, where he came on to replace David Luiz in the 76th minute of the 2016 French Super Cup. He then unfortunately played a role as an unused substitute for the next few matches until his league debut for the club in a 3-1 loss to Monaco. Since his debut, Meunier found himself competing with Serge Aurier for a starting position, but often found himself on the substitutes bench. Even after Serge Aurier’s departure to Tottenham in August 2017, he still competed for the right-back position with the newly recruited Dani Alves.

Even though Meunier has not yet solidified a starting role at right-back for Paris Saint Germain, he has proven that he has what it takes during his substitute appearances. In 46 games for the club, he has managed to find the back of the net 5 times and has assisted some of the best forwards in football in their scoring endeavours as well. His performances were impressive enough to earn him a call up to Roberto Martinez’ Belgium side for the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia.

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One to watch: Alireza Jahanbakhsh (Iran)

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Overview of Player:

This 24-year old AZ man is the star player, however you look at it. Boasting an insane 8.20 average rating on Whoscored, being Iran’s most valuable player by far according to Transfermarkt, and being linked to numerous Premier League clubs, Iran will rely on him heavily. At his tender age, Jahanbakhsh already has 38 caps; that’s three more caps than 28-year old Kyle Walker, who feels like he’s been around forever.

With most nations, we would avoid picking the star player, by virtue of it being too obvious and click-bait. However, despite Jahanbakhsh’s exploits, including finishing as the Eredivisie top-scorer last season, he isn’t especially well-known. Unless his name alone prevents him from reaching that feat, the World Cup is a great opportunity for him to bank a move to a bigger club and have his talents recognised globally.

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