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2018/19 – Manchester Football League Premier Division – Tier 11
Season Preparation | Season Report
2019/20 – North West Counties Football League Division One South – Tier 10
Season Preparation | Season Report

Good luck for the save
Link: https://sortitoutsi.net/careers/story/44860

Link: https://sortitoutsi.net/careers/story/44394



Season 2018/19 – Manchester Football League Premier Division – Tier 11
Season Preparation

My journey begins as an unpaid manager at Manchester Central – a team competing in the 11th tier of English football. The Manchester League Premier Division club have no players, no staff, and no budget, so it’s amateur contracts and a lack of security all around.

Having taken the decision to move 250 miles across England in a desperate attempt to get into the football pyramid, my first act as manager – hiring an assistant – proves very easy when Max Pelling reveals he too grew up in leafy Surrey.

Together with Pelling, I plan to operate with a small squad for the inaugural season. 200 trialists later, and that plan is out the window. The squad is eventually whittled down to 35 in time for the league kick-off, although that number is likely to be reduced further early into the campaign.

With the majority of the squad under the age of 24, four players are bought in purely for the intention of providing experience during training sessions. Gary Ricketts, still playing at the impressive age of 43, is joined by 40-year-old Mario Ziccardi, while veterans Bradley Quamina and Leroy Griffiths have both played in familiar territory down south and come highly recommended.

The highlight of the team is undoubtedly former Halifax Town striker Gage Carney, although his striking partner Stanislav Zhekov is the player I am most intrigued by. Despite lacking in every other aspect of the game, his finishing is supposedly better than that of Neymar, Eden Hazard and Paulo Dybala. The inability to speak any English may cause some problems early on, but I’m expecting goals with a route one, no-nonsense, 4-4-2 setup.


Ex-Newcastle United defender Isaac Gamblin and Anthony Cato, previously of Blackpool, also appear to be pivotal figures in the bloated squad. They’re joined by Manchester United youngster Faustin Makela, a last-minute signing who hesitantly joins after failing to sign a professional contract elsewhere. Damian Evans becomes the youngest signing at 15 and may get a few cameo appearances from the bench for some blistering pace abuse.

Pre-season proves to be average at best, although it could have been worse after the first fixture was cancelled due to being unable to field eleven players. Two wins and two draws see the team start the season unbeaten, but fail to keep a clean sheet and struggle against the clubs’ Under-23s and Under-18s consisting of lacklustre trialists.

The opening encounter against local rivals Manchester Gregorians (admittedly, every team is a local rival in this division) should prove a little more important...


Season 2018/19 – Manchester Football League Premier Division – Tier 11
Season Report

My first season in football management proves to be what should be one of the easiest. The Manchester League Premier Division was unlikely to cause too many issues, and the season is wrapped up by late January when a 2–0 win over second-placed Stockport Georgians extends the gap to 22 points.

There are no cup competitions to distract from the main aim of winning the league, and at odds of 1/5, it’s clear that Manchester Central are favourites. However, the first setback comes just two weeks into the season when Faustin Makela is ruled out for eight weeks through injury.

Unhappy at conceding three goals in the first five fixtures, non-league extraordinaire James Beeson is replaced between the sticks by 45-year-old Steve Dickinson, who hasn’t played a competitive fixture in four years. He comes highly rated, but by whom I’m not sure. Nonetheless, the veteran concedes just once in his first five outings and already the season looks decided.

With the motto of “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”, much of the squad get frustrated at their lack of playing time and the squad is culled considerably in early December. And when Leroy Griffiths, the man bought in purely for training, refuses to turn up to training, it’s probably time for change. 14 players leave in total, but none have made more than a handful of appearances.

Sam Ilesanmi is the only mid-season arrival following a brief stint in Wales, and he replaces the Bulgarian Bergkamp with Stanislav Zhekov reduced to a spot on the bench. The biggest departures come off the pitch with the assistant, coaches and youth team managers all being snapped up by bigger clubs and forcing the first of presumably many rebuilds.

Come late January, the first piece of silverware is in the cabinet. With 17 wins and four draws at the time, the league title is already wrapped up and the goal became to finish the campaign undefeated.

Shortly after, Morgan Bruce-de-Rouche, who is without a single minute of action all season, suddenly attracts offers from 46 clubs. The Trinidadian must have posted an excellent highlight video to social media showing off his 45-minute cameo in a pre-season stalemate with Dronfield Town Reserves.


A blow strikes in February when Zhekov decides to join Brimscombe & Thrupp on a free transfer, although his 5 goals in 21 games was a little underwhelming. Half of the starting XI receive several offers in the coming weeks, but the majority opt to remain at the Manchester College. The biggest departure is Makela, who returns to the professional game with Canadian side HFX Wanderers FC, while fellow winger Demetri Brown jumps up a few tiers.

Those who leave are replaced by two new arrivals – Chris Swailes is likely to be the club’s oldest player for years to come at the age of 48, and he’s joined by North Ferriby United hero Ryan Kendall. The squad remains thin even with the new duo and several of the newly-signed youth players step up for some action in the final weeks of the season.

Central eventually suffer their first defeat of the season in a 2–1 loss to Hindsford with just three games to go, although the young side fights back with two victories to ensure just one game prevents an unbeaten league campaign.


The team finish 24 points clear and concede just 22 goals in 28 games. Gage Carney contributes 18 goals to take the Golden Boot award, while also contributing eight assists. Anthony Cato narrowly edges the forward by setting up nine of the 80 goals scored, however, it is Faustin Makela who is named Player of the Year shortly after his departure.

Despite losing a few players I would have liked to keep for a few seasons, the bulk of the squad will be offered a second year at the Manchester College with some minor additions to the team. All eyes are immediately on a back-to-back promotion.
Hell of a first season in charge! Congratulations on the league title. Best of luck in the step above!
FM19 Careers:

This could be real good if you can see it through! Good luck
New save coming for FM20...:- Heartbreak, misery, but hope on the horizon... https://i.imgur.com/vyxFXJL.png?1
Cracking first season, plenty to build on! Keep it up!
Good luck with this. Always like to see someone in the lower leagues, even moreso when it's the lower, lower, lower leagues!
Love lower league saves, definitely following. After that good season you'll be Maine Road & Liverpool AFC next season now I think.

Also could you let me know how North & South Shields get on please
Like the look of this pal, starting from absolutely bare bones! Did you make the database and are the teams actual teams or fictional teams just based in the area? And what do you do about the promotions to different leagues? I've not seen any Level 11 database at the minute (only Level 10) so not sure how extensive this one is.
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