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The Notts County Story – December 2011

Hello my dear friends, welcome back to my Football Manager 2010 story. Things were looking good for my Notts County at the end of November, despite having the first defeat of the season we were still top of the table. If you remember I complained about the pitch at Meadow Lane in the previous post, Kevin described it pretty well: “a mud bath”. I contacted the board and requested them to relay the pitch, the situation was outrageous.

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Hello my dear friends, welcome back to my Football Manager 2010 story. Things were looking good for my Notts County at the end of November, despite having the first defeat of the season we were still top of the table. If you remember I complained about the pitch at Meadow Lane in the previous post, Kevin described it pretty well: “a mud bath”. I contacted the board and requested them to relay the pitch, the situation was outrageous.

They agreed that the current state of the pitch was awful but nothing can be done until the end of the season. Well, later is better than never…


We’ll have to fight in the swamp until then, there’s nothing more to do about it. The first game of the month was at home with 18th placed Reading, a team that we demolished 4-0 in the Carling Cup back in August. The game started well for us, Alibec finished off a nice team move, more than 5 consecutive passes brought him in a perfect position to score. Centre back Ritchie De Laet doubled our lead with a fine header from a corner kick. Reading clawed one back when Ben Amos missed an interception but the three points were ours, we deserved to win it.

The next game was not going to be as easy, we were playing away at 3rd placed Derby County. We had a hard fought game with them in the Carling Cup in September, we won that one 3-2. This time we were playing for points, so I would have been quite happy with a draw. My lads started the game with great determination, we had no less than 4 corner kicks in the first 10 minutes! Despite our domination it was Derby who scored, they finished off a fast counter attack and took the lead. We continued to play pretty well and Tinga finally brought us back on level terms with a powerful shot from inside the penalty area. We could have won the game with a bit more precision upfront and maybe a bit more luck but I was satisfied with the team’s performance.

Back to the swamp, we had a home game coming up with 5th placed Doncaster Rovers. They had a very good start this season and I was expecting a tough game. And it was quite difficult indeed but with better concentration we could have made it a lot easier. We missed a truckload of chances and just when time seemed to run out Denis Alibec blasted one in. We should have won it with ease…

Next up, an away game at 17th placed Cardiff. The game started perfectly for us, we were 2-0 up in the 7th minute! First right winger Sam Hinshelwood scored with a corner kick header and three minutes later Alibec banged in his 10th goal of the season. What seemed to be a perfect dream turned into a nightmare though… Cardiff turned the game around with three goals in 8 minutes, I was absolutely shocked. It seemed like each of their shots was bound to hit the net! We tried hard to make things right again but we missed lots of chances again, it just wasn’t our day…

Go to the next page to read the rest of the story.

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35 Comments

35 Comments

  1. Martin

    December 30, 2009 at 16:30

    I Like How You Put In ‘Not For Sale Mate, Not For Sale!’ That Made Me Laugh A Bit For Some Reason :P
    Good Results For That Month Even With Your Awful Pitch :)

  2. hARRO

    December 30, 2009 at 16:38

  3. Kevin

    December 30, 2009 at 16:57

    You’re now top of the table, so well done. I see Forest have slipped a few places :)
    Good recovery to after the Cardiff defeat as that could have caused a major set back so “Kudos” to you for keeping the team morale up and relpying with some solid victories.
    Thanks for mentioning my “mud bath” comment as well.

    • Johnny Karp

      December 30, 2009 at 17:33

      @Kevin
      Thanks for the comment mate. It’s good to see Forest going down, our fans must be happy about that :)
      @Martin
      Thanks buddy, I’m trying to add some humor from time to time. I’m in a very good mood now for some reason so it comes out better and more often :)

  4. Kevin

    December 30, 2009 at 19:36

    Off topic:
    >> Martin, just wondering if your mum has let you buy the game yet?

    >> Welcome ShrewsBuddy. You’re going to get hooked on this site real quick. I did, and enjoy the game now more than ever:)
    Hope you start a blog too.

  5. Sonny

    December 30, 2009 at 20:23

    5 points clear thats great and if a.c milan want one of your players then you must be doing well!

  6. Martin

    December 30, 2009 at 22:03

    Kevin. No Not Yet But We’re Going Shopping Tomorrow And I’ll Probably Be Able To Get It Then:P
    Johnny, That’s A good Idea :)
    I’d Like To Start A Blod If I Actually Knew How To Post Screenshots Etc.
    I’m Also Not Really An Expert At The Game But I’m Half Decent :P

  7. Martin

    December 30, 2009 at 22:05

    Kevin, No Not Yet But We’re Goin Shopping Tomorrow So I Might Be Able To Get It Then
    Thats A Good Idea Johnny :)
    I’d Like To Start A Blog If I Knew How To Post Screenshots Etc.
    Then Again I’m Not Really A Good Player Of The Game Lol

  8. Martin

    December 30, 2009 at 22:06

    Oops Posted Twice :P

    • Johnny Karp

      December 30, 2009 at 22:54

      @Martin
      I hope you’ll get the game tomorrow, good luck! ;)
      @Sonny
      Thanks mate, doing OK indeed :) There always is room for improvement but I guess we did pretty well so far.

  9. Martin

    December 30, 2009 at 23:12

    I Agree With Radu :)

  10. Martin

    December 30, 2009 at 23:36

    Has Anyone Got A Suggestion For A Team For Me To Manage
    On The Demo I’ve Tried Luton, Chelsea (Because I Support Them :P)And Bordeaux
    Maybe Birmingham Or Notts Co. I Was Thinking
    2 Rich Teams ! :P

  11. Martin

    December 30, 2009 at 23:47

    U. Craiova Have Some Good Players I Think ,Isnt That The Team That Johnny Supports? :P
    I Think Ive Got It Down To Luton, Birmingham Or Notts Co.
    I Am Kinda Getting My Hopes Up, I’ll Be Devastated If I Dont Get It :P

  12. Johnny Karp

    December 31, 2009 at 00:10

    @Radu
    Having condition down to 60 in pre season can be normal but it should go up after the first weeks in July.
    @Martin
    Brimingham seems like a nice challenge. And Luton too :)

  13. Sonny

    December 31, 2009 at 00:57

    johnny what should i do ? man utd have offered me a job out of the blue and im 5th with notts in the championship?

    • Johnny Karp

      December 31, 2009 at 01:00

      It’s a tempting offer Sonny, it’s entirely up to you. I always stick to a single club in a career, unless I get sacked, but that’s just my way of seeing things. If you think that the Man Utd job gives you a step forward then take it. Are they in a good position in the Premier League? Still in the European competitions?

  14. Martin

    December 31, 2009 at 01:50

    Oh How Are They Doing In Their League In Real Life, Radu?:)
    I’ve Only Heard Of Them, Cluj And Unirea Urziceni From Romania :P
    Johnny, Yeah I Think Birmingham Is A Challenge And Obviously Luton Is A Bigger One But I Also Like The Idea Of Notts Co. Seeing How Good Youve Made Them

  15. Martin

    December 31, 2009 at 01:56

    So Good (Added To My Last Comment)
    Oh And How Do I Start A Blog If I Wanted To ?
    Or Do I Have To Be Over 18 Or Something ?

  16. Kevin

    December 31, 2009 at 10:26

    >> Martin
    Although you may not readily recognize the players I think you will find starting with a lower league team and trying to gain promotion more rewarding. I’ve played many versions of this game and to be quite honest a combination of “joining” this website and chosing Swindon has been extremely satisfying.Normally I get bored after a 4 to 6 month game time with bigger clubs.Perhaps Tranmere? They are in the Liverpool area as you know which has a strong link with Ireland

    If you want to start a blog it’s easy, if I can do it anyone can. All you need to do is go to blogger.com, sign up…it’s free, chose a template and start writing! I don’t think you have to be 18 but I’m way older than that so I didin’t check:)

    >>Radu
    I don’t know how Johnny does it either. I mean taking a team from the lowest league to the Premier League is just amazing especially as Johnny seems to use aggressive tactics. When I employ those tactics the opposition simply plays the ball over the top of the defence to create chnces:(
    Anyway, as I’ve said before. Well done Johnny!

  17. Martin

    December 31, 2009 at 12:21

    Oh, Thanks For The Help Kevin :)

    • Johnny Karp

      December 31, 2009 at 12:45

      @Martin
      I confirm what Kevin said, I don’t think you have to be over 18.
      @Kevin
      That’s the kind of football that I like, aggressive and attacking, similar to the Dutch type of football invented by Johan Cruyff. I use a different formation, 4-4-2 instead of 4-3-3 but the mentality is the same, put pressure on the opponents, get the ball back and go forward! You can’t use this type of tactic with any players though and I still don’t have the perfect players for it.

  18. ShrewsBuddy

    December 31, 2009 at 12:47

    @martin: i always love playing with lower league teams. In almost every version i start a career with shrewsbury and sometimes another lower team. If i choose a team in premier division, i also take a team that is weak there. It is just more satisfactory then taking on the big teams.

    @Sonny: In the beginning i played this game, i sometimes went to another team after 2 seasons. And a few months later i stopped playing. When you are doing good with a team, i feel linked to them, and i always regretted it to leave the team. But that’s just my opinion of course.

    @Kevin: i read your swindon blog, nice work there. I also have Fabian Brandy on loan for the season, he is absolutely awesome! I have a question for you guys: he is injured for about 4 weeks, and my physio says that i should let him go back to Manchester, so they can take care of him. But then i will not have him anymore, and he is a verry importent player. Should i let him go? and look for another striker (the date is 1 january 2010). The problem is that i have not a lot of money. I could take a look to loan a new player. Just curious about your opinion.

    I would also like to make a blog, but i don’t play that often (i have the game now for 3 weeks, and i’ve playe a half a season :-) I have my own business, so i don’t have a lot of time. But maybe i will have a look to start one up, because i had some really great games so far.

  19. Sonny

    December 31, 2009 at 12:49

    i havent took the job thanks for the advice johnny

    • Johnny Karp

      December 31, 2009 at 13:00

      @Shrewsbuddy
      I’d say not let him go, he’s a good striker and he could help you once he’s back after the injury.
      @Sonny
      I’m happy to see your decision mate, take The Magpies to glory!

  20. Kevin

    December 31, 2009 at 14:52

    >>ShrewsBuddy
    Don’t let him go if it’s only 4 weeks and there’s still plenty of season to play, he’s too good! Thanks for reading my blog.

    Note to all:
    Shortly after my last Swindon post I was hit by a malware called anti-virus live. It somehow by passed my “BellCanada” Security system and is a rouge program. If you have any ideas how to remove it kindly contact me at kevin.mayo@aegoncanada.ca
    I’m here to about 3.00pm EST or 8.00pm GMT
    Thanks

    • Johnny Karp

      December 31, 2009 at 15:21

      I have no idea about that virus Kevin, sorry about that. I hope you’ll find a way to remove it.

  21. Kevin

    December 31, 2009 at 15:28

    Just found out from our IT people it’s some kind of annoying spam that can bypass Norton, McAffee security programs but not harmful to say confidential files or information like passwords.
    They’ve given me some info on how to try and get rid of it.
    Warning to all be careful with emails and attachments especially those that circulate amongst large groups of people.

  22. Martin

    December 31, 2009 at 18:45

    I Got The Game…Hooray!:P
    @Radu, Ive Read Your Blog Already And It Is Good, Unlucky With Chelmsford :)
    Can Someone Help Me On How To Do The Basics Of The Blog Eg. Screenshots Etc ?

  23. Kevin

    December 31, 2009 at 20:49

    >> Martin
    Well done for getting the game. Looking forward to seeing who you choose. Send me your email address to kevin.mayo@live.com and cc to kevin.mayo@aegoncanada.ca and I’ll try an knock up a quick and easy “how to” guide for you.

    >> Johnny
    So are you trying to reproduce the old “Total Football” concept?
    If you are then that’s fantastcic! I remember it very well,just after the 1970 World Cup it started to take shape. Showing my age now.LOL!
    Many people on CM/FM have tried and failed so good for you.

    • Johnny Karp

      December 31, 2009 at 22:18

      Kevin, I’m sure I won’t be able to replicate “total football” as Mr. Cruyff intended it to be played, I’m doing my best to produce attractive attacking football, that’s what I want to see. The problem is that a manager needs good players to achieve that although some managers did succeed with “no-name” players once in a while.

  24. Kevin

    January 1, 2010 at 11:59

    Happy New Year Johnny
    So, as Brian Clough once said “Players win games, not tactics” I wonder if that’s true. Just reading an autobiography of my footballing hero Gordon Banks. In his day they never worried too much about tactics, just put out their best eleven at club level. He played for Leicester and Stoke City

    PS Computer problem seems to be fixed. Caused by all those sentimental emails that my wife’s friends continually circulate.

  25. Sonny

    January 1, 2010 at 13:28

    happy new year lets hope the new year brings you promotion

  26. Sonny

    January 1, 2010 at 13:30

    also johnny will you be dipping your toes into the transfer market?

    • Johnny Karp

      January 1, 2010 at 13:56

      @Sonny
      I don’t have any transfer money left and I’m over the wage budget too, so I don’t think I’ll bring in any new players. I might consider some loans if I find the right players.
      @Kevin
      I think that players are more important than tactics but both factors can make or break a team. Football has changed a lot since Gordon Banks’ days, you can’t win anything now without good discipline and players willing and able to run like crazy for 90 minutes.

  27. eddie eddie

    January 14, 2010 at 22:05

    Good results for you there.

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