Glory Hunter #1 – And so it begins

Glory Hunter is an FM challenge created by Doctor Benjy a couple of FM’s ago, and he’s doing it again this year. The Last Throw / Mark is also doing one this year, so I suggest you check them out if you like the concept. 

The rules of the challenge are reasonably simple. You have twenty years to win these trophies:

Serie A and Coppa Italia
Premier League and FA Cup
Bundesliga and DFB-Pokal
La Liga and Copa Del Rey
Ligue 1 and Coupe De France
Champions League and Europa League
World Cup and European Championship

At first glance, it looks pretty easy to win 14 trophies in 20 seasons, and if I can get to a big club like Bayern or Real Madrid, I have a good chance of winning both titles in one season. Since you can make this challenge as easy or challenging as you want, I decided to give myself a tough start by starting with a team that’s not participating in Europe the first season and turning off the first transfer window. However, I still wanted to pick a club with some great players and a good team, and a team I’d never managed before. So the choice was relatively easy when I looked at Fiorentina in Serie A and reminisced back to the ’90s with players like Gabriel Batistuta and Rui Costa.

Fiorentina is not the biggest club in Italy, and they haven’t won a trophy since they won the Coppa Italia in 2001. Despite that they have a great history and have won Serie A twice in the past, they also won the UEFA Cup Winners Cup 60 years ago. Hopefully, I can make the trophy cabinet a little bigger and win domestic trophies before moving on. I have no ambitions of winning European trophies with Fiorentina, so that would be a huge bonus if we won one of them.
The club possesses excellent training and youth facilities and has some natural talents in the club. So let’s get back to that further down the line.

It looks like a good squad to build on, and some players can develop into world-class players. 

Of course, the obvious ones are, Milenković and Vlahović, but Drągowski and Castrovilli also look like potential stars in the making with age on their side, and those four will probably be the base of the team. Drągowski seems a real character with his fantastic beard! 

The squad has an extreme overweight of central midfielders with nine players that have CM as one of their natural positions. Unfortunately, I can’t do anything about that before the season starts, so everyone gets a chance to impress before the overhaul begins in January. 

I won’t focus on developing youth as I usually do in my saves since the target is to succeed as quickly as possible. However, I will never ignore talented players at the club, and if you’re good enough, you’re old enough to play. The club has exciting talents that will probably get chances during my spell here. The standouts are probably Dimo KrastevLouis Munteanu and Federico Brancolini. Krastev looks like the most talented of them at the time of writing and is well rounded as a midfielder with no considerable strengths and no significant weaknesses. It will probably be hard to take place in the first team with nine players competing in his position, but he will likely develop to become better than several of them. 

Baring in mind the overload of midfielders in the squad, the team looks suited for a 352/532 formation, and that is precisely what I’m planning on doing. It could become a problem for the first months of the season if we get injuries in the defence. At the same time, I can’t identify where we need strengthening if I don’t play the way I want us to play. I’m not sure if that’s textbook from the coaching courses around the world…

I had a pretty rough start to life in Serie A, four losses in the first six games.
After our first away game, the players decided to refund the supporters who travelled to Milano. Not a great start, and I felt all other than a glory hunter.
Another significant loss against Juventus made terrible to worse. But, despite it looking awful, there are some glimpses of light. In the last twenty minutes, seven of eleven goals conceded in the first three matches, so we’ve been decent for the first 70 and need to sort that out quickly.
The games against Cagliari and Venezia prove our qualities in this team, and we’ve managed to turn four and five-goal defeats into one or two-goal losses. After the Atalanta game, something changed, and the defence tightened up. But, even after beating Roma and drawing against Inter, the media in Italy is far from patient. The game versus Salernitana was called “El Sackico”, but neither of us was sacked after the game. Never listen to the media in Italy, I guess.
After that, there were no stopping us until the break in December. Then, suddenly, we scored late and decided the games in our favour. Four times did Vlahović score in the last five minutes and overtime to win us three points. The interest in him is slightly growing, and it could be hard to hold into him.

At the end of December, we’re placed 8th, as everyone predicted before the season, but we only have two points up to Napoli to grab a place in Europe.

We’re also still in the Coppa Italia, and with some good transfers in, we can possibly compete there as well.

Thank you for reading.

/ FM Veteran


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