While I plan a more elaborate article on strikers I’d like to update you on how I’m getting on in my longest save where I’ve reached the year 2034, won silverware albeit less than I’d planned, and I’m in charge of Tottenham Hostspur although I can revert to Roma and Corinthians saves if the feeling takes me.
Three words: local, loyalty, teamwork.
Local: My new Spurs side will have a strong English feel, complimented by more specifically north Londoners. Players from Northern Ireland, Wales and Scotland will have a distant second priority as I feel a sense of community is important in my squad, as is the ability to communicate in one language. Manchester United’s ’99 treble winning side had a strong British contingent and I believe this was one of the main factors in their success.
Loyalty: Any suggestion a player is not fully committed to the club will be frowned upon and could lead to demotion and transfer listing. To have the best chance of winning games, leagues and trophies we need every player to constantly give their all to the cause.
This is something I expect of my staff and myself too. I charge myself with the responsibility to give everything to bring success to Tottenham Hotspur until the bitter end.
Teamwork: Self-explanatory really. Ties in closely with loyalty, each individual needs to realise he is only a small cog in a much bigger machine. The club relies on selflessness, after all, players might in rare situations remain at a club for a decade or more, regardless, the club will continue long after they have retired.
I believe when I took over two months ago we were making a loss of about £30m. That has increased to £42m. When I took the job after quitting AS Roma the club’s estimated value conned me in to thinking there would be lots of money to spend on players and wages but once signing I was expected to reduce the wage budget by £400k from £2.6m (ridiculously high to be honest).
Reducing the wage spend won’t be too difficult for me as I never give in to greedy players and only pay players what I think they deserve. It is said though that wage budget directly corresponds with on-the-pitch success. I aim to get the wage budget under £2m-a-week but bring younger, possibly better players in as well. We have a large group of 30+-year-old players in the first team on around £100k per week so the method of reducing outgoings is obvious.
Some of our older players are loved by the fans though so I’ll be keeping a couple. They’ll also be useful with tutoring and in-game leadership.
I had the chance to sell arguably our best player, Julien Mercier, to Juventus for around £35m in the January 2035 transfer window, but I think he’s worth a bit more, I might have settled for just over £40m. The money would have put our balance back to a positive state for a short while.
I was given an £11m transfer budget but I couldn’t spend it because the board won’t let me add more players to the inflated wage bill so I’ll wait until I can release half of the squad in the summer, freeing up wage funds, and then I can refresh the squad and bring down the average age dramatically.
I’m currently keeping my trust in the play style that served me well at Roma. A 3-5-2 counter-attacking tactic which seems to have a bit of everything I like: width, an attacking midfielder, defensive stability and options in attack.
Keys to this tactic are the wide midfielder roles, the BBM and advanced playmaker. I always keep my three centre backs on ‘defend’ as anything else seems to drastically change things (possibly stating the obvious). The complete forward is there as something of a homage to Luis Suarez. When I first developed this tactic many games ago, I wanted to create a Suarez-Daniel Sturridge partnerships involving lots of movement, one-touch football, pace, skill and goals! I was too impatient to see if it could really work however I created something possibly equally dangerous.
English/ North London Talent
When I took charge there were only three English players in the first team squad while there were about 12 extranational territories represented. Fortunately, Spurs still have extensive youth recruitment and we have 10 promising English lads who I’ve promoted to the first team.
Sign young players for the first team: ongoing, one transfer window with no money.
Reach the Semi-Final of the Europa League: currently in 1st Knockout Round.
Reach the Semi-Final of the FA Cup: knocked out in 3rd Round by Arsenal (a better team).
Qualify for UEFA Champions League: currently 5th behind Man Utd, Arsenal, Man City and Chelsea (tough task but on a great run of eight unbeaten in league).