May 062012

Hey guys and welcome to my FM 2012 Scarborough AFC season 15 report. Last year saw a tonne of high profile departures coincided with yet more silverware as Scarborough won the Premier League, Champions League and FA Cup. With every season that passes my squads average age and wage bill drops, this is all with the intention of making Scarborough self sufficient after living off a rich chairmen during our first few years of EPL football. I can safely say the club is more than self sufficient now, leading to a renewal of my goals, I now want to make Scarborough one of the richest clubs in World football, maybe even make them THE richest, with the best reputation and also top the managers hall of fame while gathering a record amount of Champions League trophies…but we’ll see how things go. Anyhow…onto season 15 and another roller coaster at the top.

We’ll kick things off with expectations and media odds, to my surprise the board were rather lenient this season just demanding continental qualification. This was accompanied by a transfer budget of £148 million which won’t be touched just like the last few seasons. Scarborough are also second favorite for the title behind Man City in the medias eyes.

So with both my board and the media suggesting we may need to strengthen slightly this season, I took action, but not in the most predictable fashion. £97 million was raised from player sales, including the departure of hugely influential players like my best right winger Roberto, best left back Vangjeli and best left winger, Fathi.

I will mainly be promoting from within to replace those big departures but I did add a few more youngsters to my roster. The most notable of these signings were new right back, Tastet who was purchased for just £2.2 million and my new left back Medina who cost a rather hefty £12.5 million. The £16 million spent balanced nicely against our sales to equal a summer profit of £81 million.

Euro Super Cup and CWC

My boys have won the Euro Super Cup on every possible occasion so far, and I was to face the same opponents as last year, Tottenham. With 60% possession and 21 shots fired we were destined to lift the cup again, but not without a scare. Scarborough took an early lead and looked well in control until Spurs found an injury time equalizer, I started plotting out penalties in my head but a 94th minutes own goal saved me the turmoil of spot kicks.

After losing out on the Club World Championships last season, I registered a slightly stronger squad this time around. While our performances didn’t show such a commitment our results did as Al-Gharrafa were beaten 1-0 in the semi-final before Argentine big boys Boca were beaten in the final by the same scoreline.

Premier League results – first half of season

With so much talent jammed into one league, it’s vital to get off to the best start possible. At the time I felt this was achieved as my boys won 11 games, drew none and lost just three against Tottenham, Man City and Chelsea (all away from home.) You couldn’t ask for a better start could you?

Apparently you could! Chelsea had started the season dropping just two points and Man City 5 points. This left me 9 points off the pace and while we had a game in hand, this campaign was shaping into our toughest yet.

With a tough EPL campaign comes a rather cautious transfer window. I decided just to offload one unwanted youngster, loan a few others out and start looking for ways to strengthen.

I did find one ‘first team’ transfer in left winger, Gil, who had fallen from grace at Barcelona. To be honest I didn’t need the Brazilian but his talent was undeniable at just £9.25 million leading me to dream of the profit I could make, thank you Barcelona for transfer listing one of your better talents. :) I also delved back into the transfer list for McKenzie, a young English center back who had demanded a move away from Wolves, this kid was purchased with an eye on the future and my home grown quota.

Premier League results – 2nd half of season

With Scarborough trailing Chelsea by 9 points, we couldn’t afford many more mistakes. And we certainly didn’t make many as my boys won their next 11 games. We then lost to Arsenal, beat Wolves and were hit by a costly home draw to Tottenham. From our remaining 10 matches we won 9 and drew just one more. Certainly some impressive form but with Chelsea smashing through the league was it enough?

Top spot switched hands around three times during the final four games but the most important was during the final game of the season where Scarborough beat Liverpool 1-0 away and Chelsea drew 1-1 away at Old Trafford. This was enough to help me secure my fifth consecutive EPL title finishing the season on 98 points.

Carling Cup results

This competition has seen plenty of success for my boys over the years, but I really want to rack up the silverware so complacency isn’t a word I allow around the club. With this attitude we beat Wolves 3-1, Swansea 2-0, Liverpool 2-0 and Tottenham 8-1 over two legs to reach the final.

Arsenal truly are my boggy side, especially when it comes to Cup finals but we seemed to have a tight grip on this one. The possession may have been close but our 27 shots to Arsenals 5 screamed out domination. My boys even took the lead early on, but as has happened time and time again my opposition just kept plugging away and were rewarded on the 82nd minute with an equalizer. Extra-time couldn’t separate us so onto penalties we go, obviously I was confident considering our record of 5 penalty shoot-outs and 5 victories during our last 5 seasons without missing a single kick.

…But bad luck is always just around the corner!

FA Cup results

After losing the Carling Cup in such fashion I was desperate to get another trophy under our belt. The FA Cup was my perfect opportunity and we set off on the right foot. My boys beat Plymouth 8-0, Brighton 4-0, Man City 2-0, West Ham 4-0 and Arsenal 3-1 to reach the final where Tottenham await.

Like most of the finals we participate in my boys had the best chances including 28 shots to Tottenham’s 2. If that doesn’t give the result away I don’t know what does…we obviously won and the final finished 3-0. I waited 14 years for my first FA Cup triumph following many disappointments and then two come along in two years…what is it they say about London buses! ;)

Champions League results

So onto my favorite competition and one that Scarborough seem destined to perform in every year. This season saw us drawn in the same group as Shakhtar, Benfica and Zurich. I saw an opportunity to take 18 points from 18 but fell just short after Benfica held us to a 0-0 home draw.

Our ridiculous scorelines led to top spot with 16 points as Benfica secured second and followed us into the next round. Yet another defensive record to be proud of as my boys conceded just two goals during the group stages.

Onto the First Knockout round and my opponents were Italian giants Juventus. The first leg was away from home and a rather uncomfortable affair as the Italians were held to a 2-2 draw despite dominating the first half. My boys then took control at home thrashing Juve 5-1. Hoping for an easy run in the quarter-final led to Real Madrid popping out of the hat. The first leg was played at home as Scarborough gritted out a 1-0 victory before coming from behind twice to draw the second leg 2-2. This left us in the semi-final where a slightly easier opponent await in FC Porto. My boys struggled defensively during the home leg winning 3-2 but conceding some instrumental away goals. However, we were a completely different side away from home winning 2-0 with confidence and solidarity. Good thing too as we’d need this sort of attitude for the final against Manchester City.

While Man City tend to turn me over in the league, my boys seem to have the edge in cup competitions and despite their very attacking approach I decided to go with the trusted attacking strategy and fluid philosophy that had gotten us so far. This certainly paid off as the Seadogs dominated with 25 shots, 13 of which were on target. We really ran riot winning 3-0, my center back Arancibia could even afford to miss a penalty on the 59th minute. This was my fourth Champions League crown, a feat I hadn’t realized until it was mentioned within my inbox after the game.

After a short but fruitful celebration it was back down to business and developing the club further. I made a few requests to the board including more money for the junior coaching which was upped to ‘good’ and the youth recruitment which is now ‘extensive’. I also invested in the training and youth facilities which will be finished next season.

Squad stats and finances

After another fantastic season Fabricio notched up 41 goals while Southern was hampered by injury and could only manage 25 ;) But my best performers were left back Brooks who managed an average rating of 7.49, central midfield general Mokoena who hit 14 assists and the best of the bunch has to be left winger Cavus who scored an incredible 21 goals and added 16 assists.

My finances also look rather healthy as we took the £110 million from last year and turned it into £135 million. Despite making another decent profit I am not impressed by the amount of cash that seems to drain from the club, considering we won almost every competition available and even made a profit of £72 million from transfers we should be making much more than £25 million through the season. I can only put the draining effect down to our wage to stadium revenue tug of war. The stadium only holds around 20,000 while I am paying the wages of some of the best talent in the world…so expect some incredible departures come the summer!!

Well that is all for today, I hope you enjoyed the post and will be back next time for some shocking departures. Until then please feel free to comment and thanks for reading.

  50 Responses to “FM 2012 Scarborough AFC season 15 report: Pushed all the way!”

  1. Congrats on an almost perfect season, just a few penalty kicks away from perfect in fact. As for the finances, I think you have enough to buy a small country now :)

    • Thanks Johnny, I never really considered how close we were to the perfect season, certainly can’t come much closer. The finances are getting great, but my only worry is how we are making so much from transfers but it is drained away by the seasons end leaving me to rely on competition rewards.

  2. Yaaay new story :D

  3. Another great season and how you came back to win the Premier League was amazing. I still remember reading Scott Bridges scoring 30 a season :)

  4. Hi Darren,
    Just read the story, congratz on winning the Champions League again! Who would have thought all this when you just started?! And I have a question:
    Do you scout your talents when they are already so good, or do you train them so good? :)
    If you train them so good can you please post a download link to your trainingschedules?

  5. Another great season Darren :) winning 4 Champions Leagues so early after getting to the Premier League is nothing short of incredible!!

    Any chance there could be a new stadium being built to help with revenue?

    And 5/1 to win the league?!? Do the bookies really want to lose money ;) they seem to never learn :)

    Well done and good luck for next season!!

    • Thanks Jonathan, I’d love a new stadium but we only had one done around 8 seasons ago and you have to wait a long time for a new one which is a little frustrating as I must sell players constantly to keep the books right. I’d certainly put a cheeky tenner on the Seadogs at 5/1!! ;)

  6. hey darren,
    another amazing season..your players are quite incredible..regardless of who you sell, you manage to end up winning the most important trophies. it must have been awesome to beat City in that final, especially after losing 4-0 to them in the league…good luck for next season! btw, where does Scarborough stand currently in the richest clubs in the world list? and who’s top?

    • Thanks Malhar, I’m not sure where the line is with regards to selling my stars but if we don’t hit it next season I don’t think we ever will. I will be showing the richest club and reputation lists in the next post.

  7. Hey man,

    another nice season with big competition this time in the epl…
    1 question: do your players win any awards like world player of the year and stuff (maybe southern or mokoena)

    good luck :D

  8. Hi Darren

    You momentarily had me wooried after seeing the table from the first half of the season ut the lads fought back magnicently to secure you another title. Just shy of a perfect season but nonetheless still a great one. Your LB Medina looks simply awesome and well worth the investment IMHO :) Great job again!

    • Thanks Kevin, I must admit I was fearing the worst too and even more so after our ridiculous run after the first half of the season because Chelsea just wouldn’t stop winning…thankfully they fell near the end.

  9. Another (almost) flawless season, the club has been made so self-suffiecient and produced such a good crop of young talents that the owner/chairman has almost been forgotten :)
    Arsenal have an odd grip on the domestic cups but with Scarbourough arriving, you can’t see that happening for too much longer.
    Good luck for next season, and with such a microscopic stadium and surely a large fan base, do you get sell outs for every match?

    • Thanks mate, we get sellouts almost every game and that is why I get frustrating by the fact I can’t even request an increase in capacity…the stadium is the only thing holding us down so to speak.

  10. Hey Darren,
    Another great season which almost turned into the perfect season, unlucky in the Carling Cup. Your finances are great and surely the board must be considering building you a new stadium, who knows it might even by called Smith Park! :)

  11. So close to perfection, but you finally the penalty shoot-out curse got you in the end. I think I can count my penalty shoot-out wins on two fingers, such is my luck with them. :D Everyone seems to have a nemesis team, yours being Arsenal, whereas mine always seems to be Everton. The league fight was astonishing, given the 4th placed team City scored 89 points, which can be more than enough to grab the title in some seasons.

    You’re right that your wage bill is way too high given the size of the stadium you have. I know the problem all too well, having just 17,702 capacity with Torquay. Without a rich chairman pumping lots of money in, I have however managed to keep our wages at a suitable level, but it’s tough when you’re trying to chase top honours. That means I’m not yet having to look to sell players to make money Given you’re having to sell on some of the best players, you’ve done a superb job to keep the club at such a high level.

    • Thanks mate, it was a great season and as mentioned, just a few penalties away from perfect. Next season will see the wage bill dip even more so hopefully we can maintain the great results.

  12. Another fantastic season on the playing field. Close to perfection despite another cull of playing talent. I’m sure your team will be unstoppable soon – they’re close to it already.

    As for finances, 72 million. Your board needs to get their finger out and sort out the stadium issue. 20,000 is tiny for a top Champions League side and is a liability to the club. Thanks to your financial prudence, they can afford to build a new stadium and it would be a good investment.
    I hate that this game won’t allow you to do such a sensible and logical action.

    • Thanks Conor, I am with you on the whole ‘sensible and logical action’ thing, I think that is the main thing holding FM back from true realism, the fact that the game has no logic sometimes…its as though the set rules and parameters that create order result in chaos in some cases, frustrating but if it were simple SI would have solved it by now I’m sure, hopefully this will improve for future editions.

  13. Hello Darren!

    But a fantastic season! I think what is missing in your team is just to expand the stadium or build a new one! When the Sacarborough achieve this is definitely consolidate as the dominant force in Europe! I am Brazilian, but in love with English football history! Forgive my poor command of the language! Seizing the opportunity to tell me when you create a new savegame you enable the option to hide player attributes to increase the degree of difficulty! I’m anxious waiting for his new post.


    • Yeah we desperately need to expand the stadium but that doesn’t look like happening despite the good finances. As for attributes masking, I never do that as while it does make the game more difficult it results in me losing interest quickly. Its tough enough to find the top talent and I’d get too frustrated with having to scout each and every player I like to see all their details.

  14. Figures, I compliment you on your luck in penalty shootout wins then the next season you lose one I am so cursed! :(


    I cant believe Chelsea and Man City only conceded 2 and 3 goals in the opening 15 games!

    Well done on winning the rest of the trophies though! You make winning look easy!

    Good luck for next season! :)

    • lol, you do have a reputation of cursing peoples games with your comments lol, quite funny how it keeps happening. ;)

      City and Chelsea were very impressive and to be honest I thought they’d be too good.

  15. How are you so good, this is the best story by far the only thing you have got left to do is make a flawless season 100% wins;)

    Could you also tell me how you got the lower leagues to work on your PC, the editr file wont work for me:(

    • Thanks Joel, there is still a surprise in store…as you know I’ve only managed Scarborough so far, so maybe its time for me to delve into International management ;)

      If you’re struggling to get the database to work, try downloading this save game and move it to documents/sports interactive/football manager 2012/games Then just load FM and the game should be waiting in your saved games to load…that will offer a new save from day one of a new game with the database loaded…let me know if it works mate.

  16. Oh yeah, another great journey there! And for some reason, your system seems working perfectly there, although I have concern about the stadium of yours. I hope the board will expand it or even build another new one.

    In any case, I’ll be looking on the next story.

    • Thanks Tegar, I think the whole stadium saga will be a pain…while I can keep making a profit in the transfer market I’m OK but my aspirations to become the richest club will be held back I think.

  17. Another excellent season, so close in the Carling Cup.

    I’m going to guess you’ve at least sold Mokoena and Ross, given their ages and values in the squad screenshot, it looks like you could make a lot of money from those 2.

  18. Wow Darren that was a tough season in the league, if you had not beaten Chelsea in the second half of the season then they could have won ;D

    Congratulations on your treble, Arsenal always seem to spoil your party (at least it’s not the FA Cup again)

    Some very solid transfer activity this season, some big money from Spanish clubs :P, I thought Gil was brilliant but he’s not as highly rated as Sahin Cavus, can I see his profile?

    • Thats right, it really did go to the wire and on numerous occasions felt like the title hold was slipping away. Both Gil and Cavus’ profiles are in this post, Gil’s is just above my January signings and Cavus is just above the squad stats image.

  19. Congrats again Darren (How many times have I had to say this!)
    Great season, a pity about the finances though. The problem of expanding or building a new stadium is, will it draw enough supporters to fill it?

    • lol, yeah the congrats seems to be a constant fixture within my comments now. :) I actually believe we can draw enough supporters to fill at least double the size of our current stadium and that is purely down to the fact we have sellout crowds and the best rep in the EPL (almost anyway.)

  20. Another fantastic season Darren & great comeback in the league welldone !!!

  21. Well done Darren on another great season a bit unlucky to lose on penalties in the Carling Cup Final but apart from that a great season. :D

  22. I’ve read every single one of your Scarborough stories and finally I made myself write a comment. First things first, I can’t believe it! What an amazing job you’ve done over the last few years with the club and what an incredible eye for talent you’ve got! Personally, I wouldn’t have signed some of the players because they were lacking some crucial attribute for me, yet you seem to get the best out of them anyway. Well done!

    Secondly, you really need to get the board to grant your request to build a new stadium. You’re forced to adopt the Wenger mentality – sell payers who demand too much money. The difference is, Arsenal could afford to pay them, they just choose not to, while you don’t have the luxury :( Pity, as I feel hanging onto those players for 2-3 more years would further increase their value and would definitely make your life easier when it comes to the transfer market. Rather than buying the best of what is available at the moment, you could really hunt down the best talent of the generation and then sell your expensive and ‘old’ player for that position.

    I also applaud your restraint when it comes to acquiring 16-17 year olds for the future. I personally have a tendency to buy too many of them and then face a difficulty of finding room in my squad to develop them properly. I haven’t had good experience with sending the youngsters out on loan as most of the time, they don’t improve at all and their potential plunges. So instead of making money off of them, I sometimes even take losses (after adding up their wage bill for the years they played for my youth/reserves team).

    Can’t wait to read the season 16 report :) You seem to spend quite some time on the game lately, so I hope I won’t wait too long. And sorry for the essay here, hope you don’t mind :) Best of luck in the season ahead!

    • Thanks Heresy, with regards to some of my signings they did lack attributes in crucial areas but I was confident they could get those areas sorted which the majority of them have done well…if a player has potential and most attributes in the right places then the skies the limit.

      Selling players when they get to a certain age and filling the void with youth is part of my Y2G system which is designed to make clubs rich…the main issue I have is that system isn’t doing its job because we are leaking so much money through the size of our stadium, but even with a new stadium I’d probably still keep managing as I am but the likes of Southern may never have been sold, unfortunately he will have to leave in the next few seasons.

      Don’t worry about the essay, I’m always happy to read peoples thoughts. As for the next post it may be a little delayed as I try to progress with the scouting networks development.

    • You’re not the only one with problems with youth. On my FM11 game I did successfully develop a goalkeeper who came through my own youth academy, sending him out on loan, and even when I wasn’t sending him on loan and he barely played for 3 seasons he still developed, I think that was more down to luck (and good coaches) than anything though. On the whole I almost always made losses from the many youth signings who didn’t literally go straight into the first team, the ones who did were usually well worth around the £10M transfer fee though, expensive for youth, but it was the only thing that seemed to work for me. Can’t say how well I’ll do on FM12 as I’ve still barely played, but I understand how frustrating it can be.

  23. Hey Darren I have a question, I’m currently managing Benfica (we just won the champions cup in my first season) but the Olympics is coming up and there is a vacancy in the post of Spain Under 23′s and I applied for the job but can I manager both my Benfica side and Spain Under 23′s, the domestic season is over incase you need to know :)

  24. What a season Darren, there was only one cup that you could not win! You have done really well this season, good luck for next season!

  25. Any updates Darren??

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