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Blyth Spartans FM Story – Championship Pre Season

Hello my friends! After another miraculous season in League One and yet another fantastic promotion me and my Blyth Spartans are preparing for the toughest challenge yet in my Football Manager 2009 story – the Coca-Cola Championship, a very strong league with solid teams and some star players. Unfortunately the Championship TV rights were quite low, only 1.1 million euro, so our financial balance didn’t improve too much. As a result of that, although I told my board that we could get a mid-table finish they gave me a fabulous transfer budget: 1,000 euro! The wage budget isn’t too fancy either :(

1 championship expectations

It was quite obvious that with such a wage budget I couldn’t sign too many good players, so I had to let go some of my players. The saddest decision that I had to make was to sell our top goalscorer from the last two seasons, Laszlo Csongor. He was one of my favorite players and I would have liked to keep him but there were two reasons that made me accept the offer for him. First of all 250K were a lot of money for us. Secondly my young strikers, Chris Short and Yoneyama, were showing good signs of progress and I thought they would reach Csongor‘s lever of ability soon enough. I also sold both my goalkeepers and 4 other players that don’t have enough quality to play in Championship. We got quite a tidy sum for them, a bit more than half a million euro but only 10 percent of that money came back into my transfer budget.

2 blyth players out 2012

The first big transfer that I made was that I persuaded Oswaldo Chaurant to extend his contract with us until 2014 :) After that I was forced to go hunting for free transfers again, and after long negotiations I signed 6 free players. I also paid for two players that I think will have a great future.

3 blyth players in 2012

But let me present my new “stars”. My new goalkeeper is Fraser Forster, he was a Newcastle player at the beginning of his career and I signed him after he was released by Hull. He’s a giant with good reflexes, I think he will do well. The second keeper that I signed was Bulgarian Mario Kirev from Juventus! There will be quite a battle for a first team place between these two but right now Forster is slightly better.

4 fraser forster

I also needed a new right back and it was not easy to find one. Finally I chose Javan Vidal, an experienced youngster that was released by Manchester City.

5 javan vidal

It was obvious that I needed at least another centre back in my team. I found quite a few good ones but I couldn’t offer them the wages that they desired. After some negotiations I got Rhys Williams from Middlesbrough, an experienced centre back that could add some weight to our defense.

6 rhys williams

And now the best signing so far. I wanted another central midfielder but the options available on the market were too expensive for my tiny budget. One day, somewhere in July, my scout told me about Linas Urbsys, a Lithuanian player that he watched during a Champions League first preliminary round game involving FB Kaunas. I made an offer immediately and I was very happy that the transfer went through very quickly for only 9,000 euro! The lad is only 17 years old and I think that with good training and regular first team football he will become a star soon.

7 linas urbsys

Next up, my new South American right winger… He comes from Colombia and I’ve been keeping an eye on him for the last two years. I even tried to sign him last year but he didn’t get a work permit. Now he had more international apps and he got that permit! He’s a quality youngster that maybe still has some margins for progress.

8 mario garay

I needed a backup player for the attacking midfielder position and I decided to get another promising youngster, although he was quite expensive for us, 35,000 euro from Port Vale ;) His name is Josh Bell, he’s only 17, and I signed him for only one reason: my scout told me that he could grow to be better than Oswaldo Chaurant.

9 josh bell

Last but now least I thought it would be necessary to get another promising striker to keep Short and Yoneyama on their toes. I had a few free options available and after some thinking I chose Gary Horner from Burnley, a hard working striker with some hopes of becoming a future star.

10 gary horner

… and that’s about everything I could afford. I have 24 players in my squad and I feel that it’s a well balanced squad, with some experienced players along with some very promising youngsters that might blossom this season. My assistant manager thinks that we have a problem upfront and he might be right. I forgot to mention that I made around 30 offers to loan Premier League reserve players and not even one of them agreed to come to Blyth! Either they don’t like the city or they don’t like me, I don’t know what to think about this :(

11 blyth assistant manager team report 2012

The bookmakers believe that we will struggle to avoid relegation, nothing new here.

12 championship promotion odds

Again the media predict that we will finish 24th, I would have been surprised if they said something else… Now you know which are our new players and I’d like to start a prediction contest with you. Post in a comment which is the place that you think we’ll finish in! The one who will guess the exact place won’t get any prize at all :) The media already lost, I can’t imagine that we’d finish 24th out of 24 teams, that’s impossible.

So far I don’t know what would be possible for us next season. The other teams are quite strong and you’ll understand that only if I’ll list a few of the players that we’ll be facing: David Beckham (he’s 37 years old and he plays for Stoke), Levan Kenia (Portsmouth), Peter Crouch (Portsmouth), Nicolas Anelka (West Brom), Darius Vassell (Nottingham Forest) and I could go on and on… Meybe we’ll get a better picture of what we could do this season after the first few games. Until then, place your bets!



  1. Ahmed Shah

    July 27, 2009 at 23:04

    I didnt know from where to start my post but I guess I’ll start it with this ;-) …….HAHAHAHAHA Becks at Stoke and Anelka at West Brom ?????????? HAHAHAHAHAHAHA Also, those premier league clubs really do hate ya mate..30 OFFERS AND NOT ONE ACCEPTED !!! Also, I’d been up for like 3 hours now waiting for your post, passing time on the internet…not to mention it’s 2am here and half-asleep……Best of Luck mate !!

    My Prediction: 6th ;-) Sorry about that..I reckon you’ll sneak in the play offs…Blyth is a much harder club to manage then Chester.

  2. Liam Rooney

    July 27, 2009 at 23:16

    Wow Becks at stoke lol Seems like you have a really good team, all 6-7 star ratings nice! Rhys Williams, great signing from the Boro xD I hope he will do well for you. Hhhhmmmm where do I think you will finish……erm I reckon you will do well actually maybe 4th-5th, Good Luck!

    • JohnnyKarp

      July 28, 2009 at 00:53

      Thanks for waiting for my stories mate :) You should go to bed though, the story will be here in the morning too :) As for the loan offers, the clubs accepted, it’s the players that didn’t :( Those fancy Premiership players don’t like a small city like Blyth, maybe there are not enough discos to spend their nights ;) Btw, I would be very glad to finish 6th :)
      Thanks for the comment and for the prediction mate, you’re quite optimistic :)

  3. Lye Kuek Hin

    July 28, 2009 at 03:46

    Hi Johnny, i believe with your your managing and tactics skills, you will be able to get a play-off place probably 6th. The championship is a very strong league and really a lot of good clubs and players out there. Did your blyth board expand the stadium? What is your stadium capacity now. For my vauxhall game, finally manage to bring my team to championship. But i cant sign any players. The wage bugdet is the same as in league 1 and i am over bugdet now. Probably my stadium is small only 3000 now thats why the board never increase the bugdet. They are building a new stadium but ready in 2 years time. I hope i can survive in the championship. Best of luck for your team in the championship. Like to see another miraculous promotion.

  4. curtkoz

    July 28, 2009 at 14:55

    your gonna have a tough long season in the championship haha.

    • JohnnyKarp

      July 28, 2009 at 15:03

      Yea, it’s going to be long and painful :)
      Congrats for getting Vauxhall into Championship, that’s quite an achievement. No, my board didn’t expand the stadium, it has around 4000 places but only 500 seated. Right now the stadium is full at every home game that we play so they will probably expand it next season if they have some cash.

  5. Necdet Celal Güner

    July 29, 2009 at 12:44

    Hi guys,

    I am playing CM & FM since 1997. I think you are all familiar with Andry Sigborsson or Tommy Svindal Larsen from late 90’s. I am a big fan of all series. Actually, I am managing Sheff Wed. after 5 years of Bath City service. I took’em from Blue Square South and bring to Championship same as your’s. I have thousands of little success stories. Meanwhile, I really enjoy reading your’s. But I think that you may give more details about your tactics, training regimes, opened leagues at the beginning and load all players from where, on the other hand your experience level. A little comment about Urbsys, take a look at his aggression. He could disappoint you. Take a look at; Alex Pearce, Joe Garner, Vincent Acapandié, Maxim Baty and Jack Colback. I think that a playoff place depends on your tactical skills then your great Blyth squad.

    • JohnnyKarp

      July 30, 2009 at 15:23

      I posted the details that you requested on the stories page.

  6. Liversea

    July 29, 2009 at 12:52

    I’d go with 9th, a very good position for a team of your stature.

    • JohnnyKarp

      July 29, 2009 at 14:08

      I guess you’re right, 9th would be OK though I hope for more :)
      Hey mate. The details that you mentioned are all here somewhere in different posts, I guess I should combine them into a post or something. And thanks for the transfer tips, I’ll check them out.

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