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Monday, 23 February 2015 12:42

Career of a PEN Veteran

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He has a been a mainstay of the PEN league set-up since it's relaunch in 2012 and has become one of the most acclaimed managers over the past five and a half seasons. Furthermore he is one of only 4 managers to spend every season in the Plastation Prem.  He is currently the manager of Ajax, the man we simply know as "Big Boss".
Spanish Succes
Our story begins in October of 2012 when Big Boss joins the reformed PEN league and takes the job to manage Spanish outfit Espanyol in the Blue League (one of 3 leagues of 12 along with the Red and Green leagues) Despite being the lowest rated team in the league, Big Boss sees enough quality to work with and declines the chance to switch clubs. The team takes to the new managers tactics swiftly and starts on a great run of results with plenty of wins and a few draws mixed in.
Star players Simao Sabrosa and Sergio Garcia are the hub of creativity and goals and the unknown striker Christian Stuani turns out be an amazing goalpoacher, finishing as the teams topscorer for the season. Big Boss manages to keep his side unbeaten till near the end of the season when they lose their only game after going 18 games without a loss. The league title is never in question though and is secured with 2 games left to play.
After the amazing succes in season 1 Big Boss has the pick of many clubs who would love him as their manager. But he remains loyal to the players he formed such a great bond with, and stays at Espanyol to manage them in the newly formed Playstation Premier League. With transfers now a part of the PEN set-up, Espanyol get a sizeable budget for having the lowest rated squad in the league. Midfield general Kadir is the first big signing for the season and would be joined by Giampaolo Pazzini and Jan Vertonghen during the season.
The quality of opposition is tougher this time round, and Espanyol find themselves in a four way race for the title. Eventually Big Boss men come up short and finish in 4th place shortly behind the top 3 places with Lam's PSV side winning the first ever Prem title.
Working under Big Boss has been a real privilege. He brought unprecedented succes to our small club Espanyol and I feel I played the best football of my career under him. I will always remember this great period and he will go down as a legend at the club.
With two seasons at Espanyol under his belt time has come  for Big Boss to find a new challenge and with a big shake-up in the PEN organisation all it's managers are required to start fresh at a new team. Enjoying the Southern European climate, Big Boss finds his way to Italy and signs for Chievo Verona. Similar to the start at Espanyol, Chievo are also one of the weakest starting teams in all the divisions of PEN. So Big Boss has his work cut out for him once again.
Highs and Lows in Italy
After a short preperation for season 3 and a few changes in personnel, most importantly the signings of Sandro, Lemoine and Marquinho, Chievo start off their season. Big Boss shows again that he is able to get the most out of his players and has Chievo in contention for the Prem title. Veteran and clublegend Sergio Pellissier is at the heart of the teams succes with plenty of beautifull goals and excellent assists in the first half of the season.
In the winter transfer window Big Boss signs a longtime target of his in Basque striker Aritz Aduriz, and he goes to form an excellent tandem upfront with teamcaptain Pellissier. Chievo continue doing well but have to watch as Venoms Atletico Mineiro are steamrolling through the season and are finally uncatchable. A second place finish is all that is left but still a formidable result for the Italian outfit with plenty of stronger squads around. The deadline acquisition of Fabio Quagliarella for a mere 1.5m forms a great ending of the season for Big Boss and Chievo.
Expectations are high in Verona as season 4 is about to start, with the squad looking stronger than ever and a manager experienced in hunting for the Prem title. Unfortunately for the Chievo faithfull things take a turn for the worst on the pitch though. The defense that was always one of the teams major strengths is breached with ease by many opponents and the forwards are not able to score against the amount of goals that is conceded. A fight against relegation looks to be on the cards as the halfway point of the seasons looms.
Off the pitch Chievo are faring much better than on it. Big Boss' experience on the PEN transfermarket is paying dividends as multiple highly rated players join the struggling side, inlcluding the likes of Raul Garcia, Lasse Schone, Jesus Gamez, Michel Vorm and French superstar Mathieu Valbuena in a record breaking deal. In an effort to strengthen the defense, Big Boss also brings in Jan Vertonghen who was so important for his Espanyol side. The team manage to get some wins together and end up finishing the season in a midtable position.
Coming Home
The Chievo fans and board are extremely disappointed with the way the club has slid down the table and tell Big Boss to pack his bags and take all his players with him aswell. Luckily Big Boss gets a call from the team he has supported his entire life, and jumps at the opportunity to sign for Ajax Amsterdam.
Knowing what his hometown clubs fans want Big Boss spends his first season in Amsterdam bringing in many crowd favorites and local players. Jasper Cillessen, Ricardo van Rhijn, Joel Veltman, Toby Alderweireld and even Christian Eriksen all join Ajax throughout the season and the fans are loving it. The team is not ready yet to fight for the top spots in the league, but finish very safely in the middle of the table, while building for the future.
Currently almost half-way through season 6, Big Boss has Ajax playing better football than ever before and has the side in the tophalf of table so far. Some dark clouds are looming though as PEN commissioner DavoteK has enforced stringent wage measures that mean the club are having to cut into the squad to balance the books or face the dreaded punishment of Administration. So far Big Boss has already waved goodbye to Gregory van der Wiel and young Danish talents Lucas Andersen and Victor Fischer, to much dismay of the fans. And rumours keep circling about the futures of star players Eriksen, De Bruyne, Depay and Blind.
It's looking to be a turbulent time for the Ajacieden in the coming weeks and months, to find out how Big Boss will manage the squad and the fans expectations.
Read 1555 times Last modified on Monday, 23 February 2015 15:14