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My Master League 2021


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So I decided to go with Maradona, controversially; controversial because he's obviously dead but also because he was a controversial character anyway which thereby threatens to undermine any rules that I've set for the Master League. Truth be told, I was going to go with Bebeto or Romario (who is no less controversial, mind) but went with Diego instead as his personality gives me the creative license to take the Master League in whatever direction I like whilst keeping the rules intact and retaining a degree of plausibility.

So there you have it, Diego at the helm!



And where will he be managing?


20 miles north of Paris in the sleepy French department of Oise is the relatively young, having formed in 1989, and aptly named shambles that is FC Chambly in Ligue 2.

So the alternate history takes a twist and Diego fresh in France after a double heart bypass takes on a team bad enough to give much healthier men a heart-attack! :lol:

Works for me.







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As you can see, not a lot to work with amongst that lot. The better players are 30+ and the younger players aren't very good.

I was surprised to learn that we have two cum-faces in the team! First and foremost is our talisman and former French international Marvin Martin  (15 Cap / 2 goals)



The second cum-face is adorned by Vlatko Stojanovski but unfortunately for us he is on loan to the club from Nimes so his game time should be limted as I don't intend to develop him for another club to the detriment of one of my own players growth.




The team I will be starting out with looks a little something like this:


Whilst A. SOUBERVIE looks like on eour best players, at 36 I've decided to blood B. DANGER - Danger by name, Danger by nature. He is woefully bad but should improve unlike Soubervie. Same thinking for S. DELOS the first initial is for 'SPINAZZOLA' (Not) as a right-footed offensive LB. 

The rest of the team virtually picks itself and will initially be built around the following players.


No better place to start than our skipper, Thibault Jacques. Declining but good at this level, he will marshall the troops.


It's only through using him have I come to realise what an absolute fridge-freezer he is. Packs away opposition AMFs in his drawers and is cool and calm in possession. Vital.


Low Punt and Long Throw, decent age and one of our better players IRL he has been good initially and will tide us over.


The only young player that seems worth holding on to - as the season unfolds you'll see just how good he is. If Derrien is the fridge-freezer, Gonzalez is the wardrobe.

You've met MARVIN MARTIN so I'd suggest that leaves our second top scorer IRL and handiest looking striker in-game J. CORREA

A Poacher with a bit of pace, tight possession and balance - he's the best of a bad bunch.


I like the look of this motley crew - that should be evident from the size and detail of my updates :lol:.

We have no wingers and I'd like a CMF are the initial thoughts which is why I've settled on the diamond by default. Time is always of the essence in a ML so a long term replacement for JACQUES is also on the cards.

Will be tough as you'll find out in my next update about the Transfer Window.

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Transfer Window

I started with a NORMAL budget, NORMAL activity levels and NORMAL negotiating difficulty as per the settings.

I thought Diego would have a bit of a nest egg to shape the squad with; turns out we have a kitty of £247,000 and worse still a salary budget of £47,000.


If you've ever played ML you'll know just how low those amounts are in the grand scheme of things. 47K is barely a player of the quality I already have at the club (in fact many of my players are on 80K-140K and look how s**t they are).

I like this though as initially I was looking at just loading up on anyone that looked young/better than what I had i.e H. MASTOUR; however with Marvin Martin at the club and him being my best player it would have been lavish to say the least.

Basically I have cash for one player and so that has to be a player we need, improves us, has some potential and also fits our rules. Trust me, apply all those filters to a 47K salary budget and your not left with much.

No one came in for any of my bums either - well they did but they wanted the better players and they weren't clubs that I had to sell to.

So hands are pretty tied in my search for a CMF, CF and CB.

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You have Petkovic in your Team , should develop fine was a Top scorer 22 Goals in the second Tier in Serbia and 16 in the First tier, top scorer that season . He is a good Hole player. I did a season whit Chambly too :cheers:

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18 minutes ago, dobermanxedos9 said:

You have Petkovic in your Team , should develop fine was a Top scorer 22 Goals in the second Tier in Serbia and 16 in the First tier, top scorer that season . He is a good Hole player. I did a season whit Chambly too :cheers:

Yeah he's one of my best players according to his OVR and cards (N. PETKOVIĆ) but he hasn't played much for me as I prefer MARTIN there.

MARTIN is steadily declining so I will start using PETKOVIC more as he is still developing too.

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Here is a vid from his Season in the Serbian top flight before he went to Chambly , so u have an idea how he plays in real life, they made him pretty accurate and gave him all the right cards.


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Transfer Window Pt. 2 - Signing

Immediately I wanted a CB (to replace JACQUES long term), a CF to use and develop instead of loanee STOJANOVSKI and a CMF because, well, errr... we didn't have one of note - on that basis a CMF became the priority and filtering down, using the rules in the OP along with the budget available, identified two potentials:


A bargain at 90K with wages around 40K, seemed well worth a punt but again, not a natural CMF so square pegs in round holes.


Tiago "Almada" Palacios - Perfect but a budget-blowing 240K with 43K wages. CMF A-Position and B-Positions that can be developed down the line. Good age to boot - it was a no brainer given the chaff returned via the filters.

Neither player is up to much IRL or anything like that so just the sort of signings this is ML is about.

I've used PALACIOS early doors and he feels amazing compared to my other players so I'm looking forward to getting up to a 71/72 if possible and see what he plays like then.



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Chambly concluded pre-season with the signing of Tiago Palacios, a late registrant to the matchday squad for the season opener against local rivals Paris FC. Unfortunately the clamour around the youngster did little to inspire Maradona's men to a toothless 0-0 in the French capital; nevertheless a respectable 4 points from a possible 9 sees the Oise outfit comfortably nestle in mid-table.

Away from Ligue 2, Chambly's cup campaign in the Coupe De France was as tumultuous as a two game tournament could possibly be.

After sneaking past Le Havre in the preliminary round we booked a place in the last 28, securing a tie against top-tier Montpellier.



Vlatko Stojanovski stunned Montpellier with an early strike and with the game all but secure and progress to the 3rd round beckoning, Shaquil Delos was caught in possession in the box in the 88th minute resulting in a heartbreakingly easy leveller for Montpellier.

Montpellier had forced extra time and Andy Delort made Chambly pay slamming home early to eliminate the Ligue 2 minnow! The Ligue 1 side progresses leaving Chambly to concentrate on the league.



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18 hours ago, JmG said:

Loving this mate, brings back memories of FM stories :drool:

Cheers mate. Need to get back on it.

Got a few updates to post so will get them up in due course - always enjoyed reading people's builds and progress, so it's good to get your feedback :D


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League Progress

It's not been too bad going in the league; thankfully a solid defensive record has helped us to consolidate a place in mid-table. Our problem seems to be scoring goals, however. V. STOJANOVSKI is poor and J. CORREA is inconsistent. The striker I have had the most success with is Y. MAMILONNE, and though he hasn't been prolific, his physicality has been a noticeable advantage at the level I'm playing at. Sadly, no sooner had I realised how beneficial he was, he was out for 8-weeks with injury meaning STOJANOVSKI was brought back in to lead the line.

Similar to my experience with MAMILONNE, I have noticed just how good O. GONZALEZ has been at the back - another physical player lacking clear technique/prowess (though low-70s is solid at this level).

This discovery will definitely shape the buying policy in the upcoming Transfer Window.

Going into the winter break we are placed as so:



Player Records:


M. MARTIN - Our best player and it shows with Assists and Goals.

M. DERRIEN - Felt early that he would be a key player for us and his 6.4 Rating from the base of our midfield diamond is showing so.

T. PALACIOS - Flashes of brilliance from the diminutive schemer but often trying to do a bit too much with him to force the pace. Feels superb to use though and is developing well in-game.


Next: January Transfer Window.

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January Transfer Window

From the outset we had identified three positions of particular interest.

- CMF:

We lacked WFs and SMFs in the starter squad but had a reasonable basis for a 4-1-2-1-2 diamond so the addition of a CMF would have allowed us to put out a team using our best players in their best positions. We were able to address this issue with the signing of T. PALACIOS.

- CB:

Skipper Thibault Jacques is on the decline therefore a long-term replacement was high on Maradona's agenda. 

- CF:

As our season so far has shown, we are struggling to convert the draws to wins and that is attributable to the lack of a goal-scorer at the club. The club were forced to use Vlatko Stojanovski against Maradona's wishes - who was opposed to developing the Nimes loanee at the expense of the club's own players - when Yannick MAMILONNE tore his hamstring. Jorris Correa, averaging a goal every 5 games, has 6 goal contributions but his team-topping tally of 3 in 15 games isn't good enough.



None of Chamby's first-teamers are expected to leave in this window although offers have been received; through a combination of being below market value, or to teams that aren't clearly bigger/better than ours we've managed to retain our core.

A number of fringe-players and aging servants have secured moves away from the club bolstering the club's coffers.

The club is thought to have a budget of £2,500,000 to spend this window - all generated through sales.



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Chambly has broken it's transfer record with the £1.5M signing of Frantdzy Pierrot from Guingamp.

Understood to be a long-term target for Maradona, the transfer will hopefully spell the end of Chambly's goal-scoring woes. The Haitian hitman will wear the no.9 shirt and is expected to go straight in to the first team.

Pierrot matched the club's buying criteria coming in at a 69-OVR and being domestically based in Ligue 2. Qualities include benchmark numbers for awareness, finishing, aerial ability and speed. His extraordinary strength and physique carry through to a fearsome shot - characteristics that Chambly had placed emphasis on during their search.




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Centre-Back Search

The search for a protege for Thibault Jaques has been difficult. I didn't just want to rely on Maradona's nationality to raid Argentina, likewise the talent domestically was either too expensive, too good (given that we are limited by Marvin Martin's OVR cap of 70 - our highest rated player), or not good enough.

My immediate shortlist included:

I. MAREGA - The Physical Contact proving to be quite impactful at this level.

Y. ZAHARY - Has age on his side with the fundamental distribution for a CB.

G. NYAMSI - Just outside of budget and literally ticks over from 70 to 71 before I'm able to raise the cash.

These are slightly lower down the list as I don't wanna spam the ARG connection:



The players on my shortlist are proving difficult to acquire but I still wanted to hold off dipping into the Argentine market.


I had tasked the scouts to scour domestically for talent since the beginning of the season and, as if by luck, just as I was starting to get frustrated with the search, they had recommended S. NIAKATÉ to me (now a 70 with 75 Ball Winning and 77 Aggression) and, as an observation, recommended players appear open to transferring, so I was able to snare him for 750K.



So that's a CMF, CF and CB acquired all desperately needed and all fitting the rules and criteria of the direction of this ML... however, as I've since gone on to find - key first-teamers are now in decline as players age as soon as the calendar rolls over to January which is, of course, where we are - but more on that down the line.


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  • 2 weeks later...
Posted (edited)



Frandzy Pierrot, Chambly's record signing, has plundered 13 goals in 18 games since joining in the January transfer window helping the club to second in Ligue 2, sparking a seemingly unlikely push for promotion.

Signed from Guingamp, the Costamoricans will be ruing the sale of the Haitian hitman to Chambly following the sides encounter in round 21 of Ligue 2. Pierrot, seemingly motivated from the outset - punished his former employers by hammering home a first-half hat-trick.



Chambly had been playing well but lacked bite in front of goal - their defensive record had helped to consolidate a mid-table position but Pierrot's goals since the turn of the year have  fired them in to contention for promotion. Supported by the ever talismanic Marvin Martin, the two have amassed 24 goals between them. 



Can Chambly maintain their form and sustain their push for promotion? That's the question everyone is asking. Chambly lost the crunch tie against top of the table Toulouse but will draw positives from the performance. Maradona's men dominated the game but were thwarted by Toulouse's Maxime Dupe who impressed between the sticks. 



Having gone toe-to-toe with table-toppers Toulouse - stepping on their toes, even - Chambly, with Frandzy Pierrot in good form, are playing well and will be optimistic going into the business end of the season.

With 2 rounds to go, the table stands as follows:



Edited by Sunzibad
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