Gino Mourinho
2 months ago
2 days ago

Online Career – Following the One and Only “Zizou” (FC Girondins de Bordeaux) 


Inspired by one of my favourite footballers back in the day Zinedine Zidane made a name for himself at French club FC Girondins de Bordeaux. 


Following administration problems at the club causing a forced relegation, his emergence coincided with the club’s resurrection in 1992, winning the Ligue 2 title and promotion into the French league’s top tier. 


After spending 4 years there, the rest of his career is history with successes at both Juventus and Real Madrid as a footballer, and then later at Real as a coach. 




So this is where I come in. I haven’t managed in France for a long while, and I felt like I wanted to join a club that has had success in the past but needs catapulting back into the big time – and so Bordeaux really appealed to me.  


Home to the legend, a nice 40k+ stadium and a club that has had good domestic success. There is a platform to build on, and a proud history that made me want to take the helm. 


I’ve decided to start a profile based on myself, no coaching badges with experience at a semi-professional club.  


My aim will be to take Bordeaux back into the Ligue 1 big time, whilst improving my managerial reputation so that I can begin to attract bigger clubs’ interest in employing me as their manager. 


However nothing is a given with my planned direction. As the club has failed to succeed on a European footballing scale, trying to achieve something in Europe is definitely something that appeals – but also being able to bring them to compete in the Champions League, amongst clubs where Zizou truly belongs. 


My path isn’t set in stone, as I will consider either staying at Bordeaux for the long haul, or manage big clubs in either, or both Italy / Spain, nations Zizou moved to and achieved great successes. 




I often struggle with careers as a solo player, and so I’m very fortunate to find a fellow dedicated FM player that has joined me in this journey, but with his own story to tell.  


Hopefully we can help each other along and experience a great lengthy FM career across FM23 and FM24 game versions. 


Starting in the more northern country of Belgium, with close ties to K.V.C. Westerlo based in the province of Antwerp and play at their home of the Cockpit, his career begins here with the task of avoiding relegation and stabilising the club in the top Belgian tier, relying on youth and good financial management to develop this club to be one feared in Belgium. 


Is this going to be achievable long term? I wish him the best of luck, as it undoubtedly will require an extremely good temperament! 


A link to Vicco’s thread on this website can be found below:




Otherwise, I hope you will enjoy following Vicco’s and my own progress to at least, try to stay in the job and move up the managerial ladder where I can one day only hope to lift the European Champions League which Zizou has done on several occasions. 


Season #ClubLeagueFinal PositionDomestic CupsEuropean CupsNotes
1BordeauxLigue 21st, Ligue 2 ChampionsFrench Cup - QFN/ALigue 2 Head Coach of the Year
2BordeauxLigue 17th, UECL QualificationFrench Cup - SFN/A-
3BordeauxLigue 12nd, UCL QualificationFrench Cup - Runners UpUECL - WinnersLigue 1 Head Coach of the Year
Gino Mourinho
2 months ago
2 days ago

Season 1 Review (Bordeaux – Ligue 2)


Board Expectations

Ligue 2: Playoffs

French Cup: Be Competitive

Season End

Ligue 2: 1st Place (Winners)

French Cup: Quarter Finals (loss FC Metz 1-1, penalties)

MVP: Alberth Elis

Best Performance: 19-0 win vs Loups Sportif Grasla Les Brouzils (French Cup)

Most Goals: Žan Vipotnik (24)

Most Assists: Alexi Pitu (15)



League – 1st Place, Winners

Although the bookies had us favourites, our general prediction was 2nd and the board even only wanted us to make the playoffs. So it was difficult to judge exactly what was a realistic objective – I went with a mindset of achieving promotion at any cost.


We had a horrific start to the year, 3 red cards in the first 4 league games and we ended up with 6 red cards throughout the course of the campaign. I also realized that there were certainly some holes in the squad, and although we were always close to top spot for the first half of the season, defensive errors and players not quite at a top Ligue 2 level meant we were struggling to achieve a consistency that would give automatic promotion.


And so I recognized the importance of having a good January window, in the hope there may be a player or two not currently at a club or any potential loan deals that would provide a bit more first XI quality.


Three key areas I needed was a dependable goalkeeper, a good solid CB, a DM and a creative MC. I was able to get the GK, CB, and MC and ended up converting one of my younger MC players into a fairly competent DM.


From the investments, I was quietly confident if they could fit in quickly, we hopefully would have enough quality to see us secure an automatic promotion spot. 


And in the end, this proved to be pivotal and were to achieve winning Ligue 2 with an 8 point gap to second placed EA Guingamp. Delighted to win my first trophy for the club, and I also ended up winning French Ligue 2 Head Coach of the season. A great start to my managerial career and a boost in reputation, now at 25%.


QRM also made it to the playoff final from our division but but lost to the Ligue 1 side Le Harve, and failed to gain promotion as a result. 

French Cup – Quarter Finals

We had a very good run this year, and in fact the home win vs Lyon on penalties you could argue was our best performance of the season – but given the 19-0 win in an earlier round was the biggest result I’ve ever had on FM, I ended up classifying that game as our performance of the year.


But FC Metz were the side that knocked us out in the following round on Penalties, which was a pity as we were the much better side and deserved to go through to the Semis.

Squad / Transfers Impact

The three key players I made mention above that really impacted our year:


Marek Rodák – 90% of the time he performed really well. A 475k GBP signing from Fulham and Slovakian International, the safety he showed between the sticks was very important becoming a highly valued player in our backline. 

Axel Tuanzebe – a really good find here, scouts indicated he was a good Ligue 1 standard player and was exactly what we needed in our BPD. Our previous defender there proved quite shaky at times, but Axel brought in a clear commanding presence and this meant much fewer errors were occurring at the back, especially when playing out.

Bernardo Folha  - At times we struggled to break teams down first half of the season. Bringing this guy in on loan from Porto, he proved to have something extra about him which led to us creating more chances each game and certainly looked a lot more threatening in the final third.


Otherwise, it was a really good squad effort this year. Another particular concern was whether I had enough quality up front. However Žan Vipotnik showed he had enough quality at this level, having some very good games at times and notching up braces / hatricks, ending up with 24 goals for the season.


Alberth Elis (MVP)– and then there was this guy who was our best player this year. A really quick player that operated on the left flank, he scored 21 goals from that position this year and averaged the best at 7.23 for the year.


Big clubs were interested in him and he also at one point indicated his intention to leave. But our promise to offer him Ligue 1 football next year was enough to keep him satisfied till the end of the year. His contract is due to end next season, so I have to try my best to get him to renew this coming season.



Financially, the club actually had initial debts to pay amounting to GBP 46mil (Misc Debt). At this point GBP 37.5mil is still due to be paid.


So I’m going to have to be quite careful with how money is spent, despite the board giving me a transfer budget of just over GBP 11.5mil.


I expect the majority of my deals I will attempt to bring in players on free transfers, and with our weakest areas of the team, if needed look to spend money on a couple or so positions, to try and give ourselves a fighting chance of survival in the top tier next season.


Gino Mourinho
2 months ago
2 days ago

Season 2 Review (Bordeaux – Ligue 1)


Board Expectations

Ligue 1: Avoid Relegation

French Cup: Reach Quarter Finals

Season End

Ligue 1: 7th Place (Qualified UECL)

French Cup: Semi Finals (loss 1-1 (A) vs Reims, Penalties)

MVP: Marcos Leonardo

Best Performance: 1-2 win (A) vs Lyon (Ligue 1)

Most Goals: Marcos Leonardo (21)

Most Assists: Kanya Fujimoto (12)

League – 7th Place, qualified UECL

Never in my wildest expectations did I expect us to snatch a European spot, especially after our really tough start to the season.


Suffering a whole host of red cards in the first half of the season (with my poor fellow player having to hear me whine constantly, but to be fair I had 3 reds in 4 games), along with a number of injury problems that meant we couldn’t get a settled side out, meant our performances were very patchy and the results along with it. This includes the highs beating Lyon away 1-2 in our best performance of the season, to the worst, a 4-0 loss vs FC Lorient.


With our Ligue 1 survival somewhat under threat in a tightly contested league, the January window I felt was a critical one, where perhaps the most important signing was a loan from Benfica, centre back Morato.


Although it took a month or so to gel, once the backline had some games together our form was picking up. This came along with Marcos Leonardo finally finding his stride in front of goal, saw us shoot up the table, to the point we qualified for the UECL in 7th spot with a league game to spare, which we drew 2-2 at home vs PSG – a much better performance where in the first game of the season we got absolutely hammered 0-6 in Paris.


But looking at everything as a whole, and the final xG table, it certainly suggests we deserved a European spot coming 6th in this xG table. 


The board were ecstatic with the club progression this year, and with a squad in all honesty I haven’t quite yet enjoyed managing so far, I couldn’t have asked for more in our first year back in France’s top division.



French Cup – Semi Finals

We had an even better run this year where we reached the Semi-Finals, but again, unfortunately a penalty defeat saw us miss the opportunity to book a final date with PSG, who happened to beat our conquerors also by a 6-0 scoreline.


Squad / Transfers Impact

Four key players that really impacted our year: (Noting the Marcos Leonardo deal went through a tad earlier so isn't showing on screenshot, but cost 12.5mil GBP)


Marcos Leonardo (MVP) – He actually had a shocking first half of the season, really poor in front of goal and my patience was wearing thin. But continuing to add some PPMs to his armoury, second half of the season he settled, and things clicked – and is fast becoming a top striker in Ligue 1, grabbing 21 goals for us this year.


Samu – He had similar problems in settling in, performing poorly for a good third of the season. There were then some signs of him adapting putting in a few good performances, and by the second half of the season he established himself fully as a starter in our midfield trio. 


Fujimoto  - Had some horrid luck with injuries, missing quite a substantial part of the beginning of his career at Bordeaux. But once he was starting to get a run of games in, probably mid-way through the second half of the season he was now starting to show what he was capable of. It has left me with a lot of confidence on relying upon him as a starter next year. 


Morato (loan) – Although only with us for half a season and unfortunately having to return (couldn’t afford a 17.5mil GBP fee), what he brought to the backline was extra reliability and quality. Defence is the foundation for success, and that brought us the fine form we should during the second half of the year,  



We still have a good 35mil GBP to pay off with our debt, that is due to run out in the year 2035. But at least our bank balance remains in positive with 4mil GBP there at present.


This will be an area we do need to greatly think about though, with increasing wages and the additional pressure of progressing the club in the right direction, I could do with looking to sell a few players and trying to bring good quality value in. The large purchase of Marcos Leonardo will also need to be balanced out, and I'll be trying my best to bring in some good value Bosmans.


Also finishing in a European spot I hope will help attract that higher calibre of player to our club, and I think further investing in the right players, I might finally start to create a squad that I as a manager can start to feel proud of, and enjoy suffering the highs and lows with what I hope I can soon consider to be “my group of players”. 


So my aim within the next few seasons is to hopefully bring the club to the level where we are be able to compete for a Champions League spot, with a group of players I enjoy managing and watching.


One other positive is our attendance figures where we had the 6th largest average attendance in the Division. That's great support for our first year back in the top flight.


Gino Mourinho
2 months ago
2 days ago

Season 3 Review (Bordeaux – Ligue 1)


Board Expectations

Ligue 1: Avoid Relegation

French Cup: Reach Quarter Finals

UECL: Qualify for Knockouts

Season End

Ligue 1: 2nd Place (Qualified UCL)

French Cup: Finalists (loss v PSG 1-5)

UECL – Winners (won vs Roma 2-0)

MVP: Marcos Leonardo

Best Performance: 1-0 win (H) vs PSG (Ligue 1)

Most Goals: Marcos Leonardo (29)

Most Assists: Darian Males (10)

Ligue 1 – 2nd Place, qualified UCL “ Best of the Rest “

After my season last year, I was hoping that despite having to contend with European competition, with the general depth I was able to bring in and making subtle improvements to the squad, I was hoping we could push for at least a Europa spot, and with a bit of luck give the big sides a run for their money for a UCL spot.


The improvements made to the CB, keeper, central midfield and flank areas, with an improving Marcos Leonardo made a huge impact to our fortunes, in what ended up to be probably the best possible season that would have been achievable at this club and the personnel available.


With the league, the first 6 weeks we were hovering around 8th to 3rd spot, but in the 7th week we hit second place and for the remainder of the season we didn’t slide, or move up at all, staying in second place the whole way through.


Our best performance for me, albeit lucky, has to be beating PSG for the first 1-0 in front of our home fans. We did ride our luck at times, but it was nice to just get one over them – but in all honesty, the gap between us and them remains huge.


One problem we were encountering though throughout the year is our ability to play out from the back. Although I generally don’t have our team primarily playing out this way, when we do, we really do not have the personnel to do this well – and a handful of times we gave away really cheap goals.


The biggest problem players for this is our keeper Plizzari and our CB Harwood-Bellis. Both only have one foot, and very weak with the other – and it really showed.


Nevertheless, second spot with 79 points behind PSG with 88, whilst being 21 points ahead of 4th spot (being a Europa spot), meant in the end we comfortably have made it to the UCL next season. The money this will bring is very much needed for this club.


French Cup – Finalists “Bordeaux 1 – PSG 5”

We really took a beating here v PSG, and thoroughly disappointed we couldn’t give a better showing. But two games we’ve played at their place we have lost 0-1 and 1-4. Only at home we’ve been able to give them a good game, winning 1-0 this year and last year earning a creditable draw.


But to be fair, 3 days earlier we had a Semi Final second leg against Newcastle. With that tie in the balance, I had no choice but to play my strongest side, thinking that if we could make that final, we would have a better chance of beating Roma in that final rather than PSG in this one. Plus the money was a lot better in the UECL.


But the game started badly immediately here, and the first goal we gave away – our keeper with Bellis that defensive horror show with playing out the back, prime example in this game and we never really recovered from it.



UECL – Winners “ Bordeaux 2 – 0 Roma “A First Ever European Success for Bordeaux”


After beating Newcastle 7-2 on aggregate in the Semi Finals, my squad had a chance to make history, being the first Bordeaux side to ever win a European trophy.


Fortunately we came into the game with no injuries, just concern after losing our last league game away 0-3 to Lyon.


We hadn’t played that well of late, and the hammering to PSG didn’t help. So I gave my lads a stern talking to before the game, making it clear if we do not improve, then we will fail. I hoped this would motivate them to give their all for this final.


And well, the game started superbly as straight away in the 1st minute Leonardo gave us an immediate lead – a great way to calm down any nerves and give us an advantage.


We continued to press and play really good football, but failed to grab a second before the break, leaving it 1-0 at this stage.


But as expected, the Romans after a HT team talk started to get more and more into the game, creating some chances and getting a few shots away (although no clear cut chances).


I was getting nervous with about 20 minutes to go, where I made a few subs in the hope fresh legs would give us an impact, in the hope we could maybe catch Roma on the break – and that we did. Winning the ball high up, we looked to counter quickly with the ball eventually finding our star man Leonardo who calmly slotted it into the back of the net.


A huge sigh of relief at my end, as I felt there was another goal coming in this game – fortunately it went our way, and the final whistle soon went, with our lads celebrating a quite magnificent achievement winning the Conference League for the first time.


So a season where we came 2nd in the league, runners up to PSG in the French Cup, and Winners in the UECL is as good as it could get - which I guess in a sense makes it hard to motivate myself to really push again next year.


Next season, I guess all we can do here and long-term, is continue to fight for second spot, reach French Cup Finals, and go as far as we can in the Champions League with the objective of improving our finances year upon year.


However, that doesn’t sound the most appealing to myself, a manager with high ambitions to compete at the very highest level. My reputation has improved to 3.5 stars, but still not quite probably at the level needed to land a top job.


So for now, I will look to continue to try and make subtle improvements to our squad to keep it competitive for a UCL spot, and see what jobs will appear going forward.


Squad / Transfers Impact

Key players that really impacted our year:


Marcos Leonardo (MVP) – Maybe not our highest average rated player, but he was a lot more consistent over the course of this full season and banged in 29 goals for us, with many important ones.


Alberth Alis – I actually wanted to get rid of him before the season started as I had targets in mind and he was about to hit his 30s. With our finances as they are, I can’t afford to not get much for players. However he scored 26 goals which is a brilliant return. Although he’s leaving the club end of this year, I can’t fault his continued efforts that I really appreciated.


Pedro Diaz  - Another guy that, has performed valiantly despite his general deficiencies  as a football player. Gave everything he could, and due to squad restrictions in the Euro Cup he was our starter in that competition. Has scored several big goals for the club. A shame he had to go, but he was superb for us this year with what he could offer.


Javi Puado – A great free summer signing for us, grabbing a number of assists and a decent goal tally as well. Often rotated with Doku on the left, but his performances were highly consistent which ended up him being considered as our starter in front of Doku.


With our success in both the French Cup and more so the Uefa Conference League, with our current player sales in place too our overall balanced at this moment is just over GBP 32.5mil.


We still owe 31.5mil which is due to expire in 10 long years time. Quite depressing really, as the board won’t be able to allocate greater sums of cash for investing in players.


This is why it will be hard to stay at this club for the long term. Do I have the patience to manage here another 10-20 years to see if we can get close to PSG?


If the right offer comes for me to move, but otherwise I am enjoying managing this current crop of players, and not overly desperate to leave at this point.


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