Late February, 2020. Grigor Pasha, the manager of Ukrainian second-tier club MFC Mykolaiv, is sitting at home, smoking a pipe of Turkish tobacco and staring at his laptop. His sleeves are rolled up. When I arrived here in the early summer -- My! That sunlit world full of dreams appears in my mind now like … Continue reading At last — at long, long, last — an injection of talent
13 August 2019. MFC Mykolaiv full back Roman Kunev is enjoying the evening sunshine in Shevchenka Park, ruminating: I'm glad we moved to Mykolaiv. I mean, when I was with Girnyk Sport in Horisni Plavni, life was fine. But I prefer it down by the coast. The air relaxes me. As for the club, it's … Continue reading Can I trust the gaffer?
27 June 2019. The Kornutyak household, near Minaj, Ukraine. Personae dramatis: Volodymar Kornutyak; Mrs Kornutyak MRS K.: You seem sure that the move to MFC Mykolaiv would be right for you. KORNUTYAK: At my age, a move up from third tier to second is rare and not to be sneezed at. MRS K.: Will you … Continue reading An old war horse’s final campaign
20 June 2019. The boot room, Central Stadium, Mykolaiv. Dramatis personae: Dmytro Nazarenko (defence coach); Roman Chumak (goalkeeper coach). CHUMAK: So the Gaffer's made his first signing, I hear. What do we know? NAZARENKO: Kunev? Roman Kunev. All I know is he's the best right back in the club. CHUMAK: What makes you so sure … Continue reading Strengthening the squad: the view from the boot room
Du Malone writes: Once the 2021-22 season had closed, manager Grigor Pasha decided that he needed to make some changes in the goalkeeping department. The problem He wasn't happy with the no.1 choice, Vlad Mutiu. It wasn't that he made glaring errors. It was just that every now and then a goal would go in … Continue reading Player acquisition: a simple process for making complex decisions
Mariya writes: Early June: the inter-season. As usual I've come up the coast from Burgas to spend a few days with my half-brother, Grigor -- aka manager of FC Farul Constanta. And we've come to our usual restaurant. We like the fish and the pleasantly dry Fetească Neagră. 'Well, Grigor,' I say, once we are … Continue reading Survival in the Romanian top tier — no sweat
Grigor Pasha writes: When I took over at FC Farul Constanta, in the summer of 2019, they had two goalkeepers on their staff. The senior partner was the club captain, Vlad Mutiu. And the understudy was the promising Andrei Udeanu. I like building determined teams, so I welcomed Vlad's determination. I also welcomed his roundedness: … Continue reading We need to talk about goalkeepers
Du Malone writes: I reblog this post from FMathlete for two reasons. First, like Grigor Pasha, he’s managing Farul Constanta in Romania (though he’s a couple of seasons ahead of Pasha). And, second, it’s the only post I’ve read on that deals with the topic of squad numbering.
Welcome back to the bustling city of Constanta where the Sharks are gearing up for their first full season with Frank Athlete at the helm. This season took me almost two months to complete, largely down to several work trips preventing me from getting some decent game time in.
Nonetheless, I’m delighted to bring you an update from the Black Sea and will also share my musings on the role of squad numbering – a topic that will have some of you drooling at the mouth and rest of you now asleep in a heap, but hear me out anyway!
Shall we get on with it?
I can’t say I’m not pleased about it, I’m delighted, but there’s so much more to come from this team. I really hope they can live up to my expectations, and push on to the next level within the next year or…
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SCENE: Football manager's office. It is an office of two halves. The half nearer the window is dominated by a tatty desk from the 1970s. On the desk are in, pending, and out trays, with paper spilling out of them. There are also various other piles of paper: from the looks of things this manager … Continue reading Squad development: the roundtable approach
Du Malone writes: My concern here is with the question of how to navigate one specific scenario on FM -- a scenario akin to a game within a game. I call it the Locked Room scenario. The scenario To be precise: it involves starting a save with (a) zero space funds and (b) a squad … Continue reading A challenging scenario in FM — or how to escape from a locked room