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My first career here having been a member for various years but I thought it was time to make an appearance and start with an initial career I've planned to take on for some time. Starting with Shakhtar Donetsk from the Ukrainian Premier League. The aim, European Glory. Once the Ukrainians have been crowned kings of Europe I will aim to venture elsewhere to repeat the feat with another club that has never tasted the glory of the Champions League Crown.

Manager Nation Italy League Serie A Team Napoli Seasons 8
Discussion
European Glory. First Stop. Ukraine

My first career here on SIOSI having been a member for various years but I thought it was time to make an appearance and start with an initial career I've planned to take on for some time.

Starting with Shakhtar Donetsk from the Ukrainian Premier League. The aim, European Glory. Once the Ukrainians have been crowned kings of Europe I will

http://i58.tinypic.com/5d039f.jpg

I have always had the plan to attempt to conquer Europe with Shakhtar however have not ever got around to attempting it. The recent appearance of Wilc94's attempt of domination across Europe 'Continental Rise of Shakhtar' has reignited my want to attempt the challenge with the additional challenge of doing so with various teams across Europe with the hope of avoiding the absolute top dogs often being crowned 'Champions of Europe'.

Let's get started!

Season 14/15

http://i60.tinypic.com/1pj9ev.png

As shown in the above image the club start within the UEFA Champions League giving the club a great opportunity within the transfer market to strengthen and look to build towards the aim of the career, European glory. In recent years the club have qualified for the competition from time to time however have not faired well in making the later stages of the competition.

About the Manager

I myself a coach have started this career as realistically as possible. I am currently preparing to complete my Uefa B license and have only the experience of a 'Sunday League Footballer'. At the age of 23 it would appear the Ukrainian giants have taken a huge gamble here but it is one which I believe will pay off in time.

Tactics

I plan on using my current favoured formation which I believe will work very well for the current Shakhtar squad with my planned additional signings, 4-3-3 DM. My plan is to look to control the games within domestic competition due to one of if not the strongest squad within Ukraine, whilst also looking to encourage fluid movement and interchange of positions, again based upon the depth of positional capabilities within the squad.

http://i57.tinypic.com/m8z4no.png

My additional instructions look to keep to the squads strengths, looking to use the 5 in midfield to control the majority of the chances within the game. Going forward the formation often puts plenty of pressure upon the wide players and forward to make the difference with a supporting central midfielder. With this in mind the need to stretch the pitch and play long and wide attacking football will be key whilst also asking for overlapping wide play.
The squad has plenty of South American influence via Brazil and with this in mind the instruction to run at and therefore put some pressure upon the opposition defence seem's like a no brainer in terms of when in possession of the ball. I am unsure yet whether the game believes the instructions of 'Retain possession' and 'Run at the Defence' to be conflicting, although stating otherwise, however the intent is for the attacking 3/4 players to sometimes look to take a chance at running at the opposition.

Out of possession as with my team's I like to play a pressing style of play. Starting with the second tier of 'Closing Down' I will hope to regain possession of the ball often and therefore 'Tight Marking' in order to quickly apply a press is also key.

Pre-Season & Transfers

http://i62.tinypic.com/25ji63m.png

Pre-Season went exceedingly well picking up a win in every fixture with the win over Viktoria Plzen standing out having played 87 minutes with 10 men after an attempt at karate kicking an opposing player from behind. A tactical shift into a 4-2-3 and a brilliant win.

http://i58.tinypic.com/npp9gl.png

As for transfers I had identified that Shakhtar were somewhat lacking in terms of central players with potential or even real current ability other than Fernando, not to be confused with his name-sake playing for Manchester City.

The arrivals included L.Romero and G.G Romero, two Argentine midfielders I have heard plenty about in Argentina whom were also quite the future talent in last years addition. The 'Romero' central partnership in midfield I hope will dominate both Ukraine domestically and Europe within the coming seasons. William Carvalho, the much coveted defensive midfielder comes in to rotate with Fernando in DM offering plenty of strength in midfield with Alex Teixiera and Fred being trained to play as Advanced Playmakers from central midfield when more attacking threats are required.

Balanta, an FM favourite of most I am sure, was signed to partner Rakitskyi in central defence with ex Barcelona player Chygrynskyi departing the club for Rubin having decided that he was no longer up to the desired standards of the club.

Finally young talents Kaderbek and Savitskiy joined, Kaderbek as backup and potential replacement for captain Srna in future years and Savitskiy I believe to be of huge potential in the future, whom was loaned out to AZ for first team football.

As for the further departures, Stepanenko was no longer required as a defensive midfielder and a good profit was made from the sale along with Kaniboloskyi as the backup keeper, preferring to promote a younger talent as backup whom would no potential complain over a lack of first team football.

First Team

My likely first-team lineup for the season will rotate upon form and morale at times however is likely to appear as below, the only constant rotation of player being Douglas Costa and Wellington Nem as AMR Inside Forward. Rotation the defenders is additionally likely due to the 7/11 foreign player limit.

http://i59.tinypic.com/21nqqti.png

Next Up

The Ukrainian Super Cup and first game of the season against one of the leagues stronger side, Mentalist.

I also believe I may not yet be done within the transfer window with plenty of interest throughout the squad. My only target is a young LB, recommendations <£5m are welcome!

Good luck with Shakhtar

You could take an look at free agent players, there could be few decent ones.
Jonathan Silva from Sporting Lisbon is supposed to be quite a good left back.
Only allowed 7 foreigners in the first 11 in Ukraine!
Only allowed 7 foreigners in the first 11 in Ukraine!

I was about to say this, could cause some problems in the league but that starting 11 is strong for the CL!
Good luck with Shakhtar

You could take an look at free agent players, there could be few decent ones.


Thanks Johno. I took a look at free agents near the end of the window and managed to pickup Maxym Marusych whom I couldn't believe was a free agent, potential 3.5 rated 21 year old CM from Ukraine.

Jonathan Silva from Sporting Lisbon is supposed to be quite a good left back.


I had tried to sign Jonathan Silva at the start of the window however was quoted astronomical fee's in the region of £55m, a bug I thought had been removed from the Beta but it appears not. Would have loved to sign him but in hindsight another foreign player could have been problematic.

Only allowed 7 foreigners in the first 11 in Ukraine!


I was about to say this, could cause some problems in the league but that starting 11 is strong for the CL!


I had briefly mentioned this in the OP, something I didn't realise upon starting the career save. Just enforces a little player rotation and I guess makes it more of a challenge if it wasn't one already! Appears to be a lack of good Ukrainian players available even as squad players which could prove problematic in domestic competitions.

Agreed though that for the Champions League I am confident. The squad with some good rotation will surely prove a good force over time.
July & August Round-Up

http://i58.tinypic.com/5d039f.jpg

http://i62.tinypic.com/14nmvth.png

A very even game started the campaign proper in the Super Cup with a slight possession dominance over Dynamo Kiev before overturning a 1-0 deficit and hitting the woodwork 3 times before winning on penalties.

A good start to the campaign in general picking up 15/18 points in the first 6 games. A frustrating game against Metalurg D saw the opposition comeback from an early lead and score twice from their 4 shots on target to give the club and myself their first loss.

The squad has seen plenty rotation due to the foreign player rule in Ukraine proving to be a nuisance.

Final Summer Transfer Update

http://i60.tinypic.com/2zivgw1.png

The club completed the signing of free agent Maxym Marusych, a great prospect at 3.5 potential whom I felt was a strange player to be a free agent with the potential he has & finally Romanchuk was signed as backup for the LB position and also a Ukrainian national due to the 7/11 foreign starters rule, a buy I didn't want to make but felt was necessary.

Volovyk asked to leave the club and wasn't necessary to keep due to the squads depth in central defence and finally Ismaily was loaned out with a future fee clause as a LB of foreign nationality deemed unlikely playing time along with future prospect Gryshyn.

Next Up

September round-up with the domestic league table and our first game in the Champions League, here's our group!

http://i58.tinypic.com/33z4sae.png

A strong group, but I'm quietly confident!

Good start to the season and a relatively straight forward CL group!
New save coming for FM20...:- Heartbreak, misery, but hope on the horizon... https://i.imgur.com/vyxFXJL.png?1
Good start to the season and a relatively straight forward CL group!


Throwing away the game against Metalurg D was frustrating but that early loss has inspired a good run of results, a few away games to get a few points from and then I think we'll secure qualification through the home games hopefully!

September Round-Up

http://i58.tinypic.com/5d039f.jpg

http://i57.tinypic.com/10xu8gp.png

A good month for the club I thought, a run of 7 straight wins before a cup loss with a weakened team who did however hit the woodwork 4 times and control the game with 58% possession, I'm confident of making the next round with an away goal going into the home fixture.

6 straight wins now in the league after the Metalurg D defeat including a fantastic 2-0 win over potential league rivals and also general rivals Dnipro. The game was completely dominated by the club producing 14 more shots that the opposition, which does however perhaps question to finishing capabilities of the forwards!

The club is sitting comfortably at the top of the table after 10 games with 2nd placed Dynamo 4 points adrift. The first game against big rivals Dynamo is also still well over a month away so I am confident of stretching the league both prior to the game and with said game being a home fixture.

http://i60.tinypic.com/mjtkkh.png

G.G.Romero has been an inspired signing so far into his debut season for the club, appearing in the most consistent performer lists as well as sitting joint top upon the P.o.t.M awards list with team-mate Wellington Nem whom I would list as the best performer so far this season for the club, notching an assist or goal in almost every single game so far!

Champions League - Fixture 1

A good result in our first game I thought, away from home against Napoli, producing a good point and maybe putting to bed any claims of shooting off target with almost every shot doing so in this fixture. Possession totals were in our favour for the majority of the game hitting figures of near 60% by the end of the first half.
As you will also see, the referee awarded Napoli a controversial penalty for their equaliser and I felt that we were unlucky not to come away with a brilliant 3 points away in Italy. The other game in the group was won late on by Benfica which was a shame as a point from Maccabi would have been very much welcome!

http://i60.tinypic.com/1570hva.jpg

Next Up

November - Home Champions League fixtures against Maccabi and Benfica as well as the home cup tie against Metalurg ZP. Following this, our hectic November schedule and 8 games 28 days!

Great start to the season only losing 1 of your 10 league games! A nice CL group you've got there! Would be confident of the side qualifying from that! Good luck!
Great start to the season only losing 1 of your 10 league games! A nice CL group you've got there! Would be confident of the side qualifying from that! Good luck!


Was very happy indeed with the start made and the control of the majority of games both in chances created and possession.

September, November & December Triple Round-Up

September Summary

http://i58.tinypic.com/5d039f.jpg

A productive day for myself meant more time to also be productive getting right into the season with Shakhtar meaning a two-month update + the one pre-winter break fixture in December for a three month round-up.

Champions League - Fixture 2

We started September with our second group stage fixture against Maccabi which I had earmarked as a must win game no matter what and we duly delivered!

http://i57.tinypic.com/64gpc4.png

A pretty dominant performance and shock, just after praising Wellington Nem he flopped in this game with a 6.2 rated performance which saw him replaced after 60 minutes. Douglas Costa however stepped up to the plate to complete the job in our must win fixture. I was also very happy to see Benfica and Napoli share the spoils in the other fixture within the group which encouraged my belief of qualifying from the group having recently lost out late on for the 3 points away at Napoli.

Champions League - Fixture 3

Just one league game later we faced our final first round of fixtures against Benfica who were sitting joint top of the group going into this double fixture against the Portuguese giants, the first game the home fixture.

We absolutely played Benfica off the park for the majority of this game and when they had equalised to make it 2-2 from our early 2-0 lead I was livid! I wasn't however going to settle for a point after our domination and often 60% possession domination for the majority. A change from the 4-3-3 DM to a 4-1-4-1 with 4 in attacking midfield inspired a late serge however as predicted possession loss but it resulted in a much deserved late winner from star striker Luiz Adriano!

http://i61.tinypic.com/33k8wi1.png

A very tight table after 3 games, however one which we are 2 points clear out at the top of going into the second half of the group fixtures, 2/3 being away from home.

One league game later we had our 2nd leg cup fixture against Metalurg ZP with the 2-1 deficit needing to be turned over with the away goal from the first leg. I decided that we would go for this game from the off and make an early statement with a formation shift to 4-2-3-1 Wide and an attacking mentality instead of the more standard 4-3-3 DM. Here's how we were looking after a quarter of the game gone.

http://i59.tinypic.com/ej7bjq.png

Unbelievable! I couldn't believe it, chance after chance and what a lead after just a quarter of the game gone against opposition sitting at the time in the top 6 of the Premier League table. I'm not sure I've had a better start to any game in FM possibly ever. 5-0 after just a quarter gone against league opposition. Fair to say the tactical shift made the difference!

That rounded up September for us, a brilliant month picking up a win in every fixture, with the Benfica and Cup 2nd leg ties standing out for me.

http://i59.tinypic.com/fxatkm.png

November

Moving onto November where we were set to play 8 fixtures in 28 days, a hectic schedule but fantastic form going into it! We did however see our fixture against main title rivals Dynamo Kiev postponed until after the winter-break which I thought was fantastic as I did not want any potential hiccup in our run of form.

Champions League - Fixture 4

Our return leg against Benfica was set to be a very important game in the tightly fought group between ourselves and Napoli.

http://i59.tinypic.com/15s8pb6.png

A great come-back in the return fixture against Benfica, a complete reverse of the first fixture as both times the home side had an initial 2-0 lead.
I captured the screen at the wrong moment but the scorers can be seen below in the fixture round-up for the month. The result was probably fair based upon the match stats however again we had plenty of key chances in comparison to those featured from Benfica. Very happy with the comeback and now we sit alongside Napoli on 8 points, 3 ahead of the trailing Benfica.

Champions League - Fixture 5

Our final major fixture and first opportunity at securing qualification within this group before the final away tie against Maccabi which although a game I believe we can win comfortably I would like to of course take the qualification at the earliest opportunity and perhaps play a rotated squad in the final fixture.

http://i58.tinypic.com/hsrlw2.png

A great result in this fixture and qualification is secured! I was however slightly annoyed at the possession loss in this fixture, especially with it being a home tie. Again the goals can be seen below, 2 within the first half and it could be suggested that with Napoli needing a result the possession tipped back in their favour.

So here they are, the November fixtures in full and yet again what a month for Shakhtar! Not one defeat throughout and consistent goals flowing in. Note the goalscorer's featuring from the start of the season are those wide inside forwards and striker featuring consistently however more recently some additional headed goals helping the contribution from the team. Very happy with this so far as it has panned out exactly how I had predicted with the tactics, and formation as noted within the OP.

Finally what also happened during the window was the recognition of our form and furthermore the fantastic looking league table for Shakhtar fans going into the domestic winter break.

http://i58.tinypic.com/2cn8vb4.png

http://i60.tinypic.com/xeqy52.png

An 8 point lead over 2nd placed Dynamo Kiev and additionally a +17 goal difference advantage over our nearest rivals for the title, an unbelievable first part to the season which makes the one loss a real frustration to look back upon, especially in the fashion we lost it with an early lead.

Upon analysis of the statistics within the league so far this season my only gripe is perhaps the lack of clean sheets in comparison to Dynamo Kiev, which I believe is likely the basis of at times a central defence which includes 3 new signings this 14/15 season; Balanta, Kaderabak and Romanchuk.

December

Just one final game before the winter break saw our final Champions League fixture away to Maccabi, having already wrapped up qualification.

Champions League - Fixture 6

A slightly disappointing performance in our final group game and maybe I'm being harsh as we did win the game 2-0 also missing a penalty in the last 15 minutes as well.

http://i57.tinypic.com/2h37c3o.png

I felt disappointed with the second half turnover of possession going from 62% at the end of the first half to falling well off the pace in the second and finishing barely in control of the game. My main reason for deeming it a slightly poor result is that previously Benfica had knocked 5 past Maccabi, circumstance of already securing qualification may be of explanation for the below desired result.

I must add that in a dramatic result, Napoli came from behind twice to secure a 3-2 win, joining us in the next round.

Next Up

The winter break ensues and so the following round-up will summarise the winter break happenings and presumed transfer acquisitions involving the use of that bosman-rule!

Doing fantastically well here, brilliant form in the league and cup!
New save coming for FM20...:- Heartbreak, misery, but hope on the horizon... https://i.imgur.com/vyxFXJL.png?1
Doing fantastically well here, brilliant form in the league and cup!


Thanks Dan Surprised myself at how well we have performed so far. I thought the league would be fairly easy but I hadn't expected to coast through somewhat this easily.

Winter Break Summary

http://i58.tinypic.com/5d039f.jpg

Champions League - Last 16 Draw

Thought I'd do something a little different and show the draw for the Champions League, being the main concentration of this career.

So we have been drawn to play Juventus. A tough draw but a game I don't think is beyond us if we can get a good result away from home in the first leg and follow it up with a controlled performance at home.

Winter Transfers

So a few transfers were proposed through the use of the lovely bosman-rule which I'd have thought could be very useful for a club like Shakhtar.

2 Transfers In:

http://i61.tinypic.com/2lky1yg.png

http://i59.tinypic.com/nzroew.png

Two acquisitions I am extremely happy with. Samuel Umtiti a talent I believe is likely to a starter in the French national team in the future along with Varane and should Kurt Zouma live up to his potential, Umtiti may play LB for them. Either way a player that I couldn't resist signing even with the foreign player rules in Ukraine.

Secondly Patric, the young star from Barcelona B who has plenty of potential to become a future starter for most top sides across Europe. With Srna and Kaderabak very strong at the back currently I may look to loan out Patric initially and replace Srna down the line with the player. Again I feel this could become an issue with the foreign player laws but I always take the approach with the bosman-rule that if it doesn't work you can make a profit anyway.

As for transfers out, a few foreign players who were not even in rotation with the main squad were sold for somewhat discounted fee's but a lower wage bill and extra cash for players whom wouldn't get game time sounds perfect to me.

http://i58.tinypic.com/17v8l5.png

Winter Friendlies

Finally the winter friendlies, these I decided the assistant manager could take the squad for and 5/6 wins wasn't a bad run going into our next Champions League fixture.

http://i59.tinypic.com/2nu2i47.png

Next Up

Our February summary, the away leg against Juventus and our first league game after the winter break.

More top results, a couple decent winter signings too! Interesying to sed you get rid of Azevedo so soon
Good luck against Juventus!
Thanks Wilc94 I was very pleased with the signings for next season, as mentioned though I feel I may have issues with this foreign player rule down the line! As for Azevedo he didn't actually start for me again based upon the foreign player rule, I instead often play Romanchuk who arrived in the summer or rotate Balanta to the left to keep game time and play Ordets and Rakitskyi with Kryvstov as backup.

A little unsure whether or not we can pull of a result against Juventus but perhaps an away goal would make the difference going into the 2nd leg.

February Round Up

http://i58.tinypic.com/5d039f.jpg

So our return after the winter break saw 2 competitive games in February, starting with our last 16 game away to Juventus.

Champions League - Round of 16 - Leg 1

http://i61.tinypic.com/nnwkxx.jpg

We have been absolutely destroyed in this game, the worst I have seen as manager so far into the season. Away from home I expected to see as much but we were completely dominated from start to finish. Would you believe it though, that away goal I wanted! The tie isn't over yet but if we play anything like we did in this game in the 2nd leg were going out of the competition no problem. 4 players performed below a 6.5 rating which I cannot stand let the team down more so than others but a collectively poor performance.

We finished the month with a dominant performance against lowly Goverla however only managed a 1-0 result for the game which again left much to be desired! Onwards and upwards, some improvements need to be made quickly before the coming 2nd leg and also league games including Dynamo Kiev.

http://i61.tinypic.com/2hp0px5.jpg

Next Up

Our 2nd leg tie against Juventus and the rest of the March fixtures!

Juventus are a touch up in quality so you performed well keeping the score down!
New save coming for FM20...:- Heartbreak, misery, but hope on the horizon... https://i.imgur.com/vyxFXJL.png?1
Possibly a vital away goal there too!
Nothing wrong with losing to Juventus by 1 goal away from home, now just do what you've got to do at home to go through!
Juventus are a touch up in quality so you performed well keeping the score down!


Very true, in comparison to Napoli they were a class above and we should have taken all 6 points from Napoli but I felt we should have performed better.

Possibly a vital away goal there too!


I think it might prove the difference for us in this round!

Nothing wrong with losing to Juventus by 1 goal away from home, now just do what you've got to do at home to go through!


Nothing wrong with the result but the performance and stats were not great, we were lucky to come away with such a good result

March Round-Up

http://i62.tinypic.com/oayn3l.jpg

We faced three league games in preparation for the return leg in the Champions League against Juventus and finally our showdown with Dynamo Kiev.

http://i58.tinypic.com/skx2rk.jpg

All of these results would put us through to the next round of the Champions League should we be able to beat Juventus by any of these scores.

http://i60.tinypic.com/2jepbtd.jpg

I believe it's fair to say we prepared for the big upcoming tie in dramatic fashion, we have won the league mid-way through March, the earliest I have seen or achieved in any career!

Champions League - Round of 16 - 2nd Leg

My tactics were the same as we have adapted throughout the vast majority of this season, 4-3-3 DM, looking to control the game as mentioned throughout the OP. A result of 2-1 to turnaround.

http://i62.tinypic.com/f43ajt.jpg
BOOM!

One of the best games this season saw chance after chance for either side in the match highlights. An early goal from Luiz Adriano and dominance gave me great confidence with the early 2-2 aggregate lead. It was however very short lived with Bonucci scoring from a corner soon after.
The chances were still coming at either end and Wellington Nem gave us the goal that would take the game to extra-time should it finish this way.

Into the second half and the game teetered out a little briefly as neither side clearly wanted to commit too much before star-striker Luiz Adriano was put through on goal by Srna with a first time return ball towards the left wing which the striker took one touch before smashing home for a 3-1 lead on the night!

Just minutes later and Juventus had committed forward plenty of players to get the elusive away goal which would swing the tie back in their favour. A quick counter by 4 Shakhtar stars resulted in L.Romero putting away a rebounded shot to put the game out of reach for the Italians.

A late corner resulted in a Pogba goal from a few yards out however was not enough to get Juventus back into the tie as the game came to a halt with no late surges or chances for either side!

4-2 on the night and 5-4 on aggregate. I was absolutely elated as the majority of the team claimed ratings of over 8.0 for the game.

March Fixtures Summary

http://i61.tinypic.com/166an9t.jpg

Another fantastic month for the club, wrapping up the Premier League title and also qualification for the Quarter-Finals of the Champions League! The one negative to come from the month was an end to our domestic winning run which I believe totalled 14 or 15 games and also consistent scoring run as we drew 0-0 away to Dnipro, which in itself is nothing to be sneezed at.

So the next important event in our calendar.
Champions League - Quarter Final Draw

Shakhtar will Play....

Next Up - April Summary

April Summary

http://i62.tinypic.com/oayn3l.jpg

We started April with the knowledge that our first leg game would be played away in Paris following two league fixtures including the away trip to Kiev.

http://i57.tinypic.com/5oec5t.jpg

A rotated squad faced bottom of the table Olimpic D and comfortably ran away with a 3-0 victory which could have easily been double that. Our second and considerably harder fixture saw the away trip to Kiev who had been faltering of late whilst Dnipro surge up the table joining Metalist sitting one point behind Dynamo after this result, which was played out without little incidence to a goalless draw as we clearly take our foot off the gas somewhat are securing the title.

Early April League Table

http://i57.tinypic.com/10xw02s.jpg

With just 2 games remaining this season we are champions now by 17 points.

Champions League - Quarter Final - 1st Leg

Our first leg tie was again away, similarly to the game against Juventus and we went into this game with the hope of an away goal going into our fortress Lviv Arena where we are unbeaten at this stage of the season in competitive matches.

My wish for an away goal was however not to be granted.

http://i57.tinypic.com/9zm33p.jpg

A good control of possession for an away tie and a better performance than that of the away leg against Juventus. No away goal this time but the late sending off of David Luiz, whom picked up 2 yellow cards in 2 minutes! Was sent off and will miss the second leg. Opinions on whether this is actually worse or better for me I'm sure will actually be pretty equal

A 1-0 cup victory away against Karpaty followed before the biggest night of Shakhtar's history as we dawned upon a potential Semi-Final in the Champions League.

Champions League - Quarter Final - 2nd Leg

http://i62.tinypic.com/qxqhjn.jpg

We dominated the game and controlled possession once again alike to the first leg and found ourselves hitting the woodwork consistently rather than the back of the net, 3 times recorded at FT. The loss of Luiz Adriano meant a shift of tactic into a False-9 formation as Alex Teixeira replaced the striker to adopt an AMC role.

Goal - A late corner for Shakhtar saw Rakitskyi head straight at the keeper who palmed the ball away to rebound off Verratti and into the back of the net! We continued with late pressure and as can be seen, a chance even fell to Bernard for the final kick of the game which was saved by Sirigu.

Extra Time

Extra time had very little chances as neither side were able to hit the target. We go to the drama of penalties!

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We've done it! 3 saves from Pyatov claims an amazing victory over Paris Saint Germain!

I can't believe we've achieved this feat in our first season! Walk in the park this Shakhtar malarkey

April Fixture Summary

So another great month for Shakhtar, have been waiting for the bubble to burst for a while now but we'll continue to enjoy it whilst it lasts as in hindsight it appears that the goals are drying up!

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Finally if you're still reading...
Champions League - Semi Final Draw

May Summary
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We started May with our first cup semi-final fixture against Dynamo Kiev with a slightly rotated squad to ensure full fitness in the upcoming Champions League fixture.
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A good win and away goal gives us a very good chance of making it to the final and at least completing the domestic double.

Champions League - Semi Final - 1st Leg

The 1st leg this time saw us play the home leg first rather than going into the game knowing whether or not we have an away goal advantage.

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An unbelievable result to take into the second leg against Bayern, I didn't think we would have a chance even in the home tie of this game and initially thought if we could prevent an away goal that would be a success. Hitting the target 7/9 times was brilliant and it was often Neuer being tested throughout the games highlights.

Going into the 2nd leg were hoping for an away goal to make the difference and put the tie to bed!

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Our second leg of the semi-final was a complete demolition job of Kiev. They were lucky to come away from the game only conceding 4 times as we also hit the woodwork 3 times on top of the dominant result! A cup final and the chance of a domestic double is just around the corner.

Champions League - Semi-Final - 2nd Leg

A slight change of philosophy for the 2nd leg as we looked to counter Bayern as the game would likely be one we couldn't control the possession for being both away from home and holding a 2-0 lead.
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A decent first half, although dominated by Bayern, clear cut opportunities were prevented as the Bayern goal came from a corner early on.

The second half panned out much the same as the first half.
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As can be seen we had to enforce a tactical change in formation after 81 minutes as 2 minutes earlier Alex Teixeira replaced Luiz Adriano to enforce a false-9 themed formation and hopefully can a little more control over the ball and chances in the later stages. This however did only last 2 minutes as Teixeira was forced to leave the pitch with an injury meaning we now had to play the remainder of the game with just 10 men!

Extra time was forced.

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A fantastic effort from the lads but it wasn't enough to prevent an on form Lewandowski dominating the game with 2 goals in extra time to send us out of the competition at the penultimate hurdle. A 9.8 from Lewandowski and 4 goals on the night, pretty unstoppable.

I hadn't expected to get this far in the competition, especially in our first season and truth be told even when the group was drawn with Benfica and Napoli I was unsure that we would qualify from the group as I had placed us at the same potential as both those sides.

Plenty to build on and confidence that this task of achieving European Glory for the first time in the Champions League is very much possible with Shakhtar!

May Summary

Our cup final followed along with our final two fixtures of the season.

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A cup final win and the Domestic Double after the first season was achieved A dominant performance which saw Chornomorets only hit the target once in the cup final. A 1-0 win which should have been a lot more but I can't complain as we ran out comfortable winners.

The Final League Table 14/15
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An incredible season saw us finish the season 20 points ahead of our competitors and sit on top of most of the players charts. Luis Adriano also claimed the golden boot for the season.

Team of The Year 14/15
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Finally a note to finish the 14/15 season. An unbelievable one which leaves plenty of positives to build upon as we prepare to go again for 'European Glory'. This wonderful season does however come at a price...

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And so the challenge of maintaining my squad begins!

Unlucky against Bayern Lewandowski! It was expected though, can't grumble on that season!
New save coming for FM20...:- Heartbreak, misery, but hope on the horizon... https://i.imgur.com/vyxFXJL.png?1
Great work on running away with the league. Shame about Champions League
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Well done on getting so far in the Champions League, Congratulations on the domestic double!
Unlucky against Bayern Lewandowski! It was expected though, can't grumble on that season!


Hah! Thanks Dan, it was a pretty unstoppable performance that's for sure, there quite literally nothing I could do tactically to change his impact on the game and in the end we had to take it on the chin. Fantastic season, a few additions and I think we can match it again next season. The luck of the draw will help!

Great work on running away with the league. Shame about Champions League


Thanks Tommo didn't expect to win it that clearly to be honest, I think the tactical control of possession was the explanation for dominating teams which let's be honest are in the most part quite a lot weaker than Shakhtar.

Well done on getting so far in the Champions League, Congratulations on the domestic double!


Cheers Wilc94 looks like we had similar first seasons in the end with the domestic double triumphs!

Thanks again for all the comments and interest for the 2014/15 season.

Next Up - Summer Transfer Window & July/August Fixtures
Season 2015/16
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As soon as the 14/15 season had ended we were bombarded with transfer bids from the likes of Arsenal, Manchester United & Paris Saint Germain with their eyes firmly set on disrupting our squad after the amazing season we had. Balanta, Bernard, Douglas Costa, Wellington Nem & Kaderabek were the subjects of the incoming bids but with no substantial offer's received I was appeal to deter the majority and keep the players happy with new contracts.

The fans player of the year was also decided
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Summer Transfer Window

We started the window looking for a new striker, the long-term replacement for Luiz Adriano and replacement for Gladkyi who I felt was not up to the task of plying his trade within European football. Destro and Alcacer both turned down the chance to join the club, joining Schalke and Man City respectively.

Our attentions turned to a prospect whom could really work towards replacing Luiz Adriano long term rather than a completely instant replacement. Joining Umtiti and Patric who arrived on free transfers...

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Young Gabriel Barbosa
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was signed as a study to countryman Luiz Adriano for a fee of £6m now and the further £8.25m being paid over a 48 month period. Additionally Belgian talent Youri Tielemans arrived for a similar fee and deal from Anderlecht which would probably see the end to Alex Teixeira's stint at the club.

Transfers Out
Plenty of transfers out including Fred who is not included in the list as he is still waiting to leave the club for Gremio for a fee of £5.5m. I tried not to include the list of players whom were released from the club as well!

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A great start to the season saw us drop 2 points in the league as we open up a 6 point gap already!
August League Table
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Champions League Group 2015/2016
A good group once again was drawn out for Shakhtar as we look for that 'European Glory'.
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July/August Fixture Summary
We did also secure a 4th successive Super Cup for Shakhtar defeating Dnipro. I must also add that Pyatov our #1 GK has been injured throughout our start to the season and youngster Sarnavskyi who has now joined promoted side Olexandriya on loan.
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Finally...
Some of you may have noticed a player in the goalscorer list above whom hasn't been mentioned yet. With the funds raised and all transfers in consisting of payments over a 48 month period I decided to make one further signing whom would allow for tactical rotation in the squad in the forward area's and therefore allow the likes of Umtiti and Balanta more game time at the back due to the foreign player rule.
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A huge transfer stealing away Konoplyanka from rivals and last years runners-up Dnipro. A huge transfer also in terms of fee, one which I had haggled over since May last year with an initial fee being asked for in the region of £65m! With this transfer completed we made a final day signing of young and hot prospect keeper Roman Pidkivka as understudy to Pyatov.

Season 2015/16 Squad
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September
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We started the month with a league fixture against Zorya which was dominated from the off as we ran out 3-1 victors and following this we faced arguably our toughest Champions League fixture away at Atletico Madrid.

Champions League - Group Stage - Fixture 1
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We were 2-0 down early on as we were headed towards our worst Champions League defeat yet but Wellington Nem grabbed one back right after the Atletico 2nd to give us some hope and late into the game we won a penalty after Srna was brought down. L.Romero put it away and gave a brief moment of hope before Griezmann put Atletico back in front with a cross which looped right over Pyatov.

September Summary

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A pretty bad month by our standards in September as we dropped 4 points and allowed Dynamo and the rest of the chasing pack to claw back our early 6 point advantage. Hindsight would suggest that the squad rotation which I have been enforcing for every fixture in September is probably the cause for this slight dip in form but nothing we can't turnaround.

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Finally, as was shown in our September fixture list we had a comfortable 2-0 win in the Champions League.

Champions League - Group Stage - Fixture 2

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Shockingly Olympiacos ran out winners over Atletico Madrid blowing the group wide open after 2 games as we face them next in October.

Not a bad month matey, Barbosa is a quality signing, I had him at United last year!
New save coming for FM20...:- Heartbreak, misery, but hope on the horizon... https://i.imgur.com/vyxFXJL.png?1
Not a bad month matey, Barbosa is a quality signing, I had him at United last year!


Not bad Dan but not quite to the standards we set ourselves last year. Barbosa has been great so far, often appears nervous but being a debut season, new league and 19 years of age it's understandable. 9 goals in 12(9) appearances so far either way!

A Great Month
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A month which we returned to winning ways for the majority and plenty of goals were flying in as well, starting with our home tie against rivals Dynamo who were comfortably dispatched 3-1.

Champions League - Group Stage - Fixture 3

We reached the half-way stage in the group fixtures with what was on paper a comfortable game, even with their recent win over Atletico Madrid.
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A very good win for the lads as we dominated the fixture from start to finish.
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The month played out much the same as the first 3 games as we dominated all opponents and found our winning formula coasting it's way through fixtures once more and in doing so we extended our unbeaten streak to well over a seasons worth of fixtures with our only loss in domestic competitions coming way back last season against Metalurg D.
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It was in fact Metalurg D whom prevented a perfect winning month as we dropped 2 points in a game which saw us hit the woodwork 4 times and the target 11 times but struggling to find away past the keeper.
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The league table looks a little more comfortable after our October fixtures as we extend our lead to 5 points.


2's, 1's and Qualification
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November was another good month for Shakhtar as we recorded a series of wins by small margins but positive margins none the less. The month actually started with a transfer budget increase which was a slight shock after the huge record transfer for Konoplyanka at the end of the Summer Window, albeit a transfer which involved payments over a 48-month period.
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Champions League - Group Stage - Fixture 4
Our away trip in the return group stage fixture to Olympiacos kicked off the month as we ran out comfortable 2-0 winners, placing us in a great position for qualification in our next fixture against goal-difference leaders Atletico.
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Champions League - Group Stage - Fixture 5
The afore mentioned tie and first opportunity to qualify from the group stage game was against Atletico who had managed a 3-2 win over us in the away tie. The game was dominated by 'Key' chances for the Ukrainian outfit however was pretty even according to the match stats. An early flurry or chances for Shaktar resulted in an offside goal and also a chance which hit the woodwork before Wellington Nem bagged the only goal of the game towards the end of the first half. Little in fact happened during the second half as only a single opportunity was highlighted as the Ukrainian's bagged qualification for the Round of 16.
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Domestic Summary
The majority of domestic games in November were hard fought fixtures much to my disliking but once again a clean sweep of results extended the league at the top of the table as we look to secure yet another league title. The character of the squad shone through in the final two league fixtures of the month as we overcame early 1-0 deficits to come out 2-1 winners and finally Luiz Adriano stopped the rot by scoring for the first time in well over 10 appearances.
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