Liga MX-ing Around

So, it has been a while. This post is going to cover the most recent Apertura season in my save with Pachuca in Liga MX. It’s the second season of the save that I began on my Twitch account Deeky Plays, but due to some pretty significant changes in my personal life – I am now a Dad – I don’t have the time right now to properly stream FM, so for now this save is going to move onto the blog, until such a time that I can find the time around the hectic schedule of parenthood to spent two hours streaming me playing a video game, pretending to be a manager in Mexico – a league I can now highly recommend. I love Liga MX. ❤️ 🇲🇽

In terms of how this save has gone this far whilst it’s been a solely streamed save, we finished 3rd in the first Apertura (opening) stage before losing at the Semi-Final stage of the playoffs, and finished 1st in the Clausura (closing) stage before losing in the Final to Club America, who always seem to be able to come along and spoil our party. I set myself some relatively basic restrictions for the save in that I can only sign players that have already been scouted by my staff – we have the best staff in Mexico – so I’m avoiding the player search screen entirely. I also HAVE to promote at least one youth player every season to create a conveyor belt of talent through the club.

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My 4-4-2 system on FM22

I’ve been playing full-fat FM22 for about a month now since it’s release, and I must say I’m really enjoying the latest edition of the game we all love. There are a few things that are clearly effective in the match engine – for example crossing – but these are by no means game breaking, and people have quickly identified that there’s a range of goals being scored and that the match engine is actually fun to watch. My chosen save has been Newcastle United – that I’ve been streaming on my Twitch channel – for a multitude of reasons, firstly because the squad is extremely poor and badly needs improvement to be at a Premier League level, secondly because I’m from the North East and have managed Newcastle before and thirdly, well…


Money. There’s just so much money. Full disclosure, I spent almost the entirity of the £200m that the PIF give you when you take over as Newcastle. Rather than rebuilding the entire squad, I focused on signing around three or four major signings to improve the level of the first team, bringing in Jules Koundé from Sevilla for £68m, Dominic Calvert-Lewin from Everton for £64m, Nordi Mukiele from Leipzig for £33.5m and Raphinha from Leeds for a cut price £38.5m. I’ve made future signings either on Bosmans for season two or cheap deals partway through season one – Arthur for £8m from Juve was an absolute steal – but the signings were intended to fit into the 4-4-2 system that I’ve been using throughout the season, a tactic I’m now more than happy to offer for download.

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Made in Chelsea

Ahead of the impending release of Football Manager 22, I really want to do at least one post about the Chelsea save that I’ve been tweeting about on my Twitter (@JLAspey) for the last month and a half or so. I simply started tweeting about it during the summer holidays to give me something to do and a way to talk about my save with the people who still follow me for my FM content – something I know has been sporadic in revent years – but as time has gone on with this save, I’ve found my love and passion for this wonderful management simulation game we all play come flooding back, to the point where I’m more motivated to produce content for FM22 at release than I have been since maybe FM17. The save has also highlighted to me a lot of what I love about playing FM, and therefore why so many of the saves I’ve done since this blog’s heyday around FM15-17 have failed. As ridiculous as it sounds, I do think I’d forgotten what kind of saves I actually like playing on FM.

The save itself merely was a continuation of my Tottenham Hotspur stream save that I’d done on my Twitch channel DeekyPlays, however I’d simply resigned and holidayed, first getting the job at struggling Leicester City, before leaving and joining Chelsea. At that point in February 2023, Chelsea were sat in 11th. Poor Roman had been through so much in the past several years – 7th and 6th place finishes – that all he expected of me was a top-half finish. This wasn’t the Chelsea – and the Roman Abramovich – that you’ve come to know.

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The Road to the Show: III

Hello, and welcome back to the Riley Emerson Let’s Play Road to the Show series on MLB The Show. It’s been quite a considerable amount of time since I’ve posted this series, but I’ve been playing it lately and wanted to get back to documenting the save and analysing the performance of my character. For anyone who just starts reading this series now, please find a link to the previous installments here. For a quick recap, Riley is a Starting Pitcher from Boston, Massachusetts who was drafted in the 24th round of the MLB Draft by the Atlanta Braves. When we last left off, Riley had pitched five starts for the Braves’ AA Minor League affiliate, the Mississippi Braves. However, much has happened since then (in game, not the year and a half since the last update – though it has been a busy one if you’re asking). For reference, it is currently mid-August 2018 in game.

Firstly, Riley spent a period of time being used as a Reliever – a pitcher that comes in midway through games when the Starter is either tired, or being smashed around the park. Now we’ve established that Riley has a faily down to Earth character, so he didn’t complain and simply did the job he was asked to do – but personally that’s not what I wanted for Riley’s career. After a few weeks, he then went back to being a Starter, and actually ended up being voted as the Starter in the Southern League All-Star game. Weeks later, after more good starts for the Braves, Riley received note that he had been traded to the Oakland Athletics, and reported to the A’s (as they are known) Double A Affiliate, the Midland RockHounds, who play in the Texas League. Below you can see Riley in his most recent start for the RockHounds, going 8 innings without giving up a run.

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Ude af Ideer – Out of Ideas

Right, so it’s time for the next update of the AaB save. If you follow me on Twitter (@JLAspey), you will have seen that I was a little unsure about writing this update, but I think in terms of helping me understand what’s going on in this save, and why things aren’t quite going as I’d have hoped, it’s really important. There’s a possibility I just rush ahead now without processing what’s gone wrong this season, and it would ruin the save, plain and simply. I’ve already considered ditching this save because of how things have been going, but I said that my focus for FM21 would be consistency, so I’m sticking with it, and it’ll be all the better when I get things right. For those of you though who don’t speak Danish, Ude af Ideer means ‘Out of Ideas‘, which is really how I feel right now with AaB. I’m not sure I’ve had a save go this way for quite some time. Still, hopefully that should make this an interesting read for everyone.

So, those of you who have read the first and second updates will know that we began by using a Back 3, but after a truly horrific run after Christmas 2020 – it’s like the game knew what would happen in real life – I switched to a deep 4-3-3 system, but with two DM’s rather than CM’s. This stabilised our form, and actually got us into the final of the DBU Pokalen (the Danish Cup), but that was the point where I saved the game. Saving when on a good run is a dangerous thing to do on Football Manager, because you never know whether you’re going to continue the run when you turn the game back on – and we certainly didn’t.

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Ikke Så Simpelt… – Not That Simple…

Yes, a second post of the AaB save everyone! Told you consistency was my main focus this year. Having played through towards nearly the end of the season, I wanted to do an update to discuss how things have gone, because so far this has been one of the most enthralling seasons I’ve ever played on Football Manager. I know I had intended to do topical updates, and I still think I will, but this has me so enthralled right now that I’ve just continued to keep playing. Clearly, I’ve also played the winter transfer window, and save for some kids sent on loan and the arrival of much needed left sided centre back Charlie Weberg from Swedish side Helsingborgs for 37.5k (a bargain if I’ve ever seen one), there wasn’t much to report back on recruitment and scouting. I am still actively scouting four particular countries in Denmark, Sweden, Germany and England, based on my scouts areas of expertise and knowledge, and it’s starting to bear fruit, with some players already on my watch list for the summer window.

If you read the last update, I said that apart from the fact the team is from Scandinavia, and I love the colours and the logo, one of the main reasons I chose AaB is that Kasper Kusk – who I signed for Newcastle on FM16 – plays for them. Kusk is without a doubt the top player at the club and every system I’d come up with had been to get the best out of Kusk… and then this happened. Kusk would be out for around 3 months. Now, if you’re managing in a top league, this likely isn’t an issue because you’ll have a backup who – whilst maybe not being as good as your main option – will be more than able to do a job whilst your star player is out. However, at AaB we do not have such a player, and the loss of Kusk sent us into an absolute tailspin. If you remember, we ended the last update one point behind Midtjylland in the Superliga.

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A Danish Adventure…

Hello everyone, and welcome back to The Tactical Annals. I’ve been promising FM21 content on my Twitter (@JLAspey) for around a month now, so it’s time we got started with what I’ve been doing on FM21 thus far, where I’ve gone, and what my plans are moving forward. The first thing I want to say is that for a few years now I’ve been really unhappy with the content I’ve produced, and the inconsistency of my saves, not only in terms of posting, but the saves themselves. I’ve never been one to have long and extended saves, and as I’ve become older – and therefore way more busy – this has only worsened – but over the last few years, really since FM18, the content I’ve produced here has been way below my usual standard. This year, things will be returning to normal, which is why I’ve waited until now to write my first post for FM21. This year, I’ve settled on Aalborg BK in the Danish Superliga, known better as AaB. I want the format of these save updates to be very focused, so you’re unlikely to get the classic ‘mid-season, end season’ updates from me, and instead you’ll get focused updates that will discuss specific areas of the club, whether that’s tactics, recruitment or anything else. For now however, I’ll give a brief overview of what’s been going on as I’ve reached the end of December in the Superliga.
So why AaB? I’d love to pretend that it was something really deep and meaningful, but really it’s because they’re a mid-table team with some former glories giving me a recovery aspect to the save, and I like the logo and kit colours a lot. I also really enjoyed managing in Sweden back on FM14, and wanted to go back to Scandinavia. Other than that, they have Kasper Kusk playing for them, and I signed him for my all conquering Newcastle side back on FM16. He’s now 29 and not quite the player he was back then, but it’s still nice to be managing him again.

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Como lo estamos Haciendo?


Right, we’re partway into the league season, so it’s time to do a brief update on how we’re getting on. These results updates will happen at certain points of the season, because I really don’t want results to be the absolute focus of this save. Of course I’m looking to eventually gain promotion to La Liga, but I want to explore certain parts of the game that I’ve avoided for years (such as training or player development) or simply not had time to really involve in my saves. A tactical post is coming soon outlining my tactical approach for this save, but for now, here’s how we’re getting on in terms of results.


At the end of September, we sit 12th in the Segunda B. As you can see, we are making an absolute living off draws at the moment, with one win, six draws and a loss. It’s hardly an incredible start, but this season is all about avoiding relegation, and beginning to set the club up for seasons to come. Our tactical approach I believe will help us with this long term, but I’ll be discussing that next time. We’ve had a somewhat difficult start to the season in terms of fixtures, playing several of the teams predicted to finish towards the top of the table such as Hércules and Lleida, but we’ve also played some of the bottom teams, and I would have liked to have picked up more points from those games.

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Que es Cornellà?


Right, after the first introduction post which outlined where I was going, and the new approach I’m taking with attribute bars, it’s time to go over who the club I’m managing – UE Cornellà – are. Firstly, Cornellà are in the Segunda Division B (Group 3), the third level of Spanish football and the lowest available in Football Manager 2020. Cornellà have an extremely unimpressive history, largely floating between the 6th and 4th levels of Spanish football since their formation in 1951, and have only been in the Segunda B since 2014/15. Their most noteworthy influence on Spanish football is their production of Jordi Alba.

Cornellà de Llobregat Weather Forecast

Cornellà themselves are from the larger community of Cornellà de Llobregat, which is in Catalonia and is part of the general area of Barcelona. In footballing terms, the area itself is more likely to be known for the presence of Espanyol. The city itself is historic, dating back to 980AD, becoming part of Barcelona’s territory sometime around the thirteenth century. Cornellà comprimises part of the working class area of Barcelona, and has been largely linked to immigration from the rest of Spain into Catalonia through its history. For this reason, Cornellà holds an interesting position within the wider context of the Catalonian Independence movement, and some within Catalonia who are pro-independence have argued that Cornellà is pro-Spain because of its Xarnego – a pejorative term towards immigrants from around Spain – links.

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I’m Going on an Adventure…


Welcome to a new save on this website and one that will be in an entirely new format. This save is going to follow almost a ‘forum’ format. Posts for this save will be relatively short, and each one will focus on a specific aspect of the save. Some will purely be about results and performances, some will be about tactics, some will look at player development, and some will focus on the bigger picture of the club itself. My aim with this is to plain and simply produce more content for the blog, in a way that I can document a save, and really delve deeply into what I’m actually doing. So, what am I actually doing?

Well, I’m off to Spain – a country I’ve not managed in since Eibar in FM15 – and the lowest playable league on FM20, the Segunda Division B – Group III exactly, with UE Cornellà. I’ve also brought in a manager from years back, Pere Busquets who played for me in my much loved Bayer Leverkusen save in FM15. Busquets was signed on the cheap from Real Madrid, and went on to be the utility player of dreams, playing central midfield and both full back positions. At the young age of 32, he now finds himself as manager of Cornellà. There are a lot of specific changes I’ll be making about my approach to the game with this save, from tactics to how I develop the club itself. Another important one is that I’m going to be playing with attribute bars rather than values, in order to give an extra level of challenge to the save, meaning I have to focus on scout reports, performances and statistics in order to find the value of players.

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