So here we go chaps, my (not so) long anticipated 2nd save reveal of FM20 will be my local team Salford City FC, not two miles from where I am typing this.
Before we go any further though, you may ask why this is number 2 in the series when I am quite clearly just announcing it now.
The answer is that I already played the start of this save way back in the thin end of FM19, which you can read here: By the gasworks wall #1: “Yeah? How’s that then?” when I attempted, and succeeded, to get Salford promoted to League 2 by simming the league right up to April 19 to try to get the exact same league position to take them forward.
In actual fact all that I learned was ..
- How difficult it was to sim to that exact league position (it took 13 sims) and
- How accurate FM turned out to be as we finished in the same place in the league on almost the same points and beat Aldershot 2 nil in the final, which Salford actually won 3-0 against AFC Fylde.
So all that said, where to from here and why not just call it a new save, which is really what it is? The honest answer is that being a lazy arse I already have a banging title PLUS the header image and also because, having been interrupted by real life work stuff at the time it really does feel like unfinished business.
2: So why Salford Sarriball?
Like many of us, whenever I go into a save I like to look for a particular angle. For the Heathens 2018 that was creating a fictional universe and alternate history; for FM19 it was extending it globally, and for the SM Caen save it was of course based around the D Day story from Normandy in Northern France of which Caen was a central hub.
However one thing I haven’t done for a while is a tactical save and having already dabbled in the Sarriball philosophy as used in my Napoli save in FM18: The Old Lady and Ronaldo #1: il Partenopei chiama (The Parthenope calls), I thought it would be a nice one to return to. In addition my pal Adam aka @FMstag has just wrote an excellent article all about Sarri’s vertical tiki taka on FMbase, which you can view here: FM20 – Tactical Styles: Vertical Tiki-Taka.
With this in mind, this is the philosophy/tactic (it’s both I suppose) that I want to model this Salford save on based upon the 5 main attributes of COMPOSURE / BALANCE / DECISIONS / PASSING AND ANTICIPATION as well as the secondary attributes as follows:
Of course, high primary attribute values and good secondary attribute values won’t really rise high until we hopefully start to challenge for the premier league given that such a well rounded player is the quality you could attract, though we can scale it and try to make them good even at this stage.
3: Other objectives
So apart from adopting the vertical tiki taka style, what else do I want to achieve?
Well firstly as a one club save kind of man I just want to do the usual and win everything, though I thought it would be nice to give myself some side aims too, as follows:
- NOT GET SACKED! Let’s face it it’s a good possibility in this edition
- Take on Phil Neville and Gary Neville (and poss Nicky Butt eventually) as coaching staff (will take a few years as I’m guessing they might oddly turn us down to due to our rep and wages even though they’re on the board already?)
- Beat Manchester City, United and Liverpool in competitive games
- Use a youth-income approach. Not moneyball but I mean to generate income from a good youth stock, either from fee paying loans or development and sales
- Get Manchester United as a senior affiliate, when possible
- Get a bigger stadium than City and Liverpool (if poss Utd but doubt we will ever get there)
4: How will I do it?
I’ll probably start it in the next week or so in September 2019 with the first window open (given the focus I have on this recruitment model) but in terms of progress through the save it will be baby steps definitely and I hope to take it slow and enjoy it.
In terms of actual save progress we will need to consolidate in League Two given that Salford are currently as of January 2020 exactly mid-table in 12th! As for the rest, here’s the plan:
5: And finally aka your thoughts appreciated ..
So there you go. This is probably one of the smallest blogs I will write as I haven’t even fired it up yet! That said, please feel free to chip in your feedback if you think that for example I should have used different attributes or of you think there’s another angle I could include. You can either do that here with a comment or via my twitter which is simply @FMheathen.
So that’s it for now, thanks for reading and hope you will pop by again soon.
Daz aka @fmheathen everywhere.