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Vauxhall Motors Story: October and November 2016

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Hello friends, the time has finally come for another episode of the Vauxhall Motors Football Manager 2011 story! As you know from the previous update we had an inconclusive start to our second Premier League season with two wins, a draw and two losses in the first two months but we did well in the Europa League as we won the first two group stage games. We had quite a few injury problems but I was hoping to see a clean bill of health sooner or later and pick up our league form. Let’s see how October and November went.

Well, we couldn’t have had a better start in October! We demolished West Brom in the first game of the month, the game ended 7-1 with doubles from Parana, Zé Carlos and defender Julian Bazzi and a special goal from left winger Andrew Surman. That goal was later chosen as Premier League Goal of the Month so I guess you should be watching it (click here to open the video). It was a great performance from my team, we had no less than 16 shots on target, and I think it was the very best display of the season up to that point.

Our injury-troubled Brazilian left back finally got a few minutes in as a substitute, it was his debut for the Motormen. He seemed to be finally out of the woods but that didn’t happen, he was called to the Brazil youth national team and, of course, picked up another injury! Nikao is turning into a medical mystery… I was hoping to employ him as my first choice left back but I’m quite worried about his future at the moment. Anyway, I chose to recall youngster Ray Davis from loan just in case, Nikao might be injured forever at this rate! I might even try to buy a new left back in January, that is if I’ll be having some money then.

Back to the Premier League then, our next game was a very difficult one at defending champions Tottenham.

Tottenham vs Vauxhall (Premier League)

Venue: White Hart LAne

Attendance: 43,632

Starting line up: Dean Bouzanis – Julian Marino, Louis Laing, Julian Bazzi, Javier Godoy – Leandro Velasco, Radek Vecera, Graham Howson, Andrew Surman – Parana, Zé Carlos

Team Talk: You can win today!

The game was extremely entertaining right from the start: my Graham Howson was denied by the goalkeeper after just 30 seconds and then Gareth Bale hit the post one minute later! Unfortunately Tottenham were the ones to convert the flamboyant start into a goal, centre back Louis Laing let Iker Muniain slip away from his marking and the Basque striker punished us on 9 minutes. Then Tottenham made it 2-0 on a corner kick six minutes later and the game looked as good as over since we were unable to react before half time.

Half time score: 2-0

Half time team talk: Disappointing!

Half time substitutions: Mark Brown for Vecera, Pavol Vesely for Ze Carlos

We looked a bit better after the break but still not good enough to break the Spurs‘ solid defense. However, we did manage to get back into the game 20 minutes before the final whistle when Howson played a perfect ball in for Pavol Vesely and the young striker fired home. We were back in with a chance but our hopes ended seven minutes from time when a poor corner kick clearance from Julian Bazzi allowed Tottenham to score the third goal.

Full time team talk: Sympathise.

Man of the match: Pavol Vesely

Flop of the match: Leandro Velasco

Match Stats

Video Highlights

Click here to watch the highlights.

Olympiakos vs Vauxhall (Europa League Group I)

Venue: Georgios Karaiskakis

Attendance: 26,071

Starting line up: Dean Bouzanis – Julian Marino, Louis Laing, Mervin Simon, Javier Godoy – Leandro Velasco, Mark Brown, Graham Howson, Andrew Surman – Parana, Pavol Vesely

Team Talk: You can win today!

The game was very important for our Europa League campaign, not only because Olympiakos were the group favourites but also because we were tied with them on 6 points after two games. They had beaten both Koln and Slavia Sofia quite convincingly so I was expecting a tough match in front of the fanatic Greek fans. The game seemed to go our way after the initial minutes, we were piling on the pressure and came very close to scoring but right winger Leandro Velasco missed a glorious chance inside the opening 10 minutes. And then… then we got caught on a counter attack and the home side took the lead, I’ve seen that happening too many times last season… Fortunately we got back on level terms after just 10 minutes but it wasn’t a team goal, it was all Parana: the Brazilian striker took the ball from inside our own half and went on right to the middle of the six yard box before firing home! It was a superb goal from the Brazilian wonderkid, I was amazed by that run. Then we had a good chance to take the lead but the usual Mervin Simon corner kick header hit the post and bounced out of danger.

Half time score: 1-1

Half time team talk: Pleased.

Half time substitutions: Stephan El Shaarawy for Velasco, Ibrahima MBow for Surman, Connor Wickham for Vesely

Some lads were quite tired so I had to make all three substitutions at half time. Fatigue was a problem for the home side as well so the two teams were rather stretched on the pitch but that resulted in a spectacular end-to-end game. It was quite thrilling to watch but not pleasing towards the end, Olympiakos netted the winning goal six minutes from time to go top of the group.

Full time team talk: Good effort!

Man of the match: Parana

Flop of the match: Louis Laing

Match Stats

Video Highlights

Click here to watch the highlights.

After two consecutive defeats we had a good chance to make a return to winning ways as we were meeting Championship side Huddersfield in the Carling Cup fourth round. We did win the game thanks to a Connor Wickham goal, we dominated from start to finish but we were unable to put more goals past a heroic defense.

We had one more game to play before the end of the month and it was another tough one, at Old Trafford in front of more than 74 thousand fans!

Manchester United vs Vauxhall (Premier League)

Venue: Old Trafford

Attendance: 74,041

Starting line up: Dean Bouzanis – Julian Marino, Louis Laing, Julian Bazzi, Javier Godoy – Leandro Velasco, Radek Vecera, Graham Howson, Andrew Surman – Parana, Zé Carlos

Team Talk: Pressure is off!

With morale being rather low after those two consecutive defeats I chose to encourage the players by trying to lift the pressure off their shoulders, I wanted them to try to enjoy football again and give Man United a good run for their money. The strategy seemed to be working, we started the game pretty well and could have taken the lead on 17 minutes when a great shot from Leandro Velasco thundered off the crossbar. The game was fairly even but we were enjoying better ball possession and that resulted in a second yellow for United‘s right back, he was a bit impatient and wanted to get the ball at all costs! :)

Half time score: 0-0

Half time team talk: Pleased.

Half time substitutions: Stephan El Shaarawy for Velasco, Mark Brown for Vecera

The numerical advantage gave me some hope of an upset at Old Trafford but Manchester United surprised us just 30 seconds into the second half, Chicharito was left unmarked in our penalty area and he didn’t forgive us. That goal took the wind off our sails, the Red Devils were defending with extreme precision and my lads were unable to create chances. The home side could have doubled their advantage on counter attacks but the game ended 1-0, Man United played a lot better with 10 men than they did with 11…

Full time team talk: Disappointing!

Man of the match: Javier Godoy

Flop of the match: Stephan El Shaarawy

Match Stats

Video Highlights

Click here to watch the highlights.

So, we started the month in style with that 7-1 hammering of West Brom but then we lost all the important matches, I was a bit disappointed to be honest.

The league table was quite worrying as well, we were down in 13th place. It’s true that we had two games in hand on most of the other sides but still, I wasn’t expecting us to be in the lower half of the table at the end of October.

On to the top five now: Parana is still leading and he totally deserves it, he scored 16 goals in 16 starts and also provided 8 assists. Fellow Brazilian Zé Carlos is doing pretty well too, he has 7 goals in 7 games but no assists, he seems to be a bit selfish at times. Graham Howson is still the heart of our midfield, he is a key player and I want to keep him at the club for years. Argentine centre back Julian Bazzi seems to have adapted quickly, he produced some good displays so far and he also managed to bang in three goals. Young striker Pavol Vesely has found his place in the team after an unconvincing first season at the club, he is my main backup for the Brazilian pair and he gets quite a few chances to play since Zé Carlos is ineligible for the Europa League.

Noovember was our chance to bounce back in the Premier League as we had some easier fixtures lined up but it also was a very important month in the Europa League and in the Carling Cup.

Did we manage to climb up the Premier League table in November? I won’t tell you now, go to the next page to find out! :)

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

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Erick Wolf
Erick Wolf
9 years ago

What an incredible goal by Howson!
I’m quite impressed with the Motormen and I’m sure that you’ll make it past Köln.
I have a question to ask you though.
I am really interested in writing for this site, but I don’t have FM.
Maybe I could use FIFA, for a change? :o

Erick Wolf
Erick Wolf
9 years ago
Reply to  Johnny Karp

I am definitely interested Johnny. I have now joined the forum as ErickWolf, and I’ll start writing straight away!
Thanks for accepting me.

Stromson
9 years ago

Wow, talk about a brutal December schedule (though I have no lack of faith in your ability to see your squad safely through)! I was starting to get a little concerned on the first page, but I should’ve known better. That was an envious November, and I would be pretty surprised to see you fall out of the Europa places at this point. Keep up the great work!

Darren Smith
9 years ago

Well done Johnny, that’s an amazing set of results. Page two really did showcase your attacking talent but not as much as that first match against WBA, wow what a score line! Great to see the finances are good and I’m still in awe of the two Brazilians!! :) Some good signings in January could secure a top six finish in my opinion. Keep it up mate.

vikingmarius
9 years ago

Tough luck this month, some disappointing defeats, but you will definately move up the table again, I assure you :P and I have to say you are incredibly unlucky with your cursed LB, I would be extremely frustrated with that type of injury proneness anyway just to hope it gets better

Excessive
9 years ago

Hey Johnny,
Quite tough for the first but you pulled it out of the bag for the second month with is great to see. Especially now since you have moved up from 14th to 6th! Well done mate, there is a long way yet but if you can carry on that kind of form you will be pushing into that Champions League spot!
Good luck for next month :)

Kevin
9 years ago

Hi Johnny
That’s really bad luck losing Parana like that and four months is quite a bit. Great results in November that put’s you above Man United!! Your December schedule is completely nuts, I hope you can make it through to the end of the year :)

Alex
9 years ago

Hey Johnny,
Page 1 is not really good, page 2 is more like your usual self :). Parana is a brilliant player, it’s a shame that he is out for a long time. When I saw the league table after November I was shocked by the massive jump from 14th. You will maintain a position in the top 6, hopefully the top 4 :D. Good luck!

vaibhavc
vaibhavc
9 years ago

Hey Johnny
October was not that great of a month, but November is the month that we know that you are capable of. Graeme Howson scored an amazing free kick! I would like to see what happens against Aston Villa, I think you can win that one. Parana being injured must be so annoying. Nikao is like Wickham in my Burnley save, he always gets injured when going on international duty.

Lye
Lye
9 years ago

Hi Johnny,

You have a difficult month in October but you returned with a bang in November. That was a good run of results there. This should be how the motormen should be playing. The team is very unlucky with some injuries to your crucial players but i hope you can hang on as you have other players coming in. Hope you can carry the form over and start challenging at the top. Good luck.

hils
hils
9 years ago

Hi Johnny,hard month there!!!!!!!! Great 7-1 win!!!!!!!!!! Good luck!!!!!!!!

CsAtlantis
9 years ago

Those were some tough fixtures Johnny, and you have quite a few injuries too, but good to see you did much better in November, unlucky there with West Brom, sometimes it seems that the opposition goalkeeper does not want to concede no matter what, quite a lot of fixtures in December, hopefully you can cope with the games coming hard and fast

2 games in 3 days (26 december and 28 december) look particularly rough, good luck!

Sayam Khan
9 years ago

Hi Johnny, October wasn’t great but you manahed to make up for it in November. Well Done! Unlucky on Nikao’s injuries, hopefuly he gets back to normal. The loss against West Brom was cruel, but in football, you must take your chances :D Anyway, good luck!

Laxeyman
Laxeyman
9 years ago

November was a great month for you Johnny, I’m sure you’ll go on a run of form now that your players have gelled, November could be the springboard for a great season. You should get through in the Europa League as well, and you surely have a chance of winning that competition. You’ve got a tough month in December, but I’m sure you’ll do well, good luck!

lewisjackson130
lewisjackson130
9 years ago

great story mate, doing extremely well and good luck on the top 4 position.
and im currently trying to sign Ze Carlos- but in my scout report it saying it will be extremely hard to get a work permit,
did you get him straight away and what year in the game did you get him:)

lewisjackson130
lewisjackson130
9 years ago
Reply to  Johnny Karp

Ohh i see i was going to get round to asking what these ‘regens’ are:)
but yeah okay cheers for letting me know this guy i nearly signed is said to be a good signing for leading prem team so would have been great, cheers and good luck:)

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