FM21: My year at the Palace

I wouldn’t say my ASSE save had become stale but I needed a break from it but I still wanted to play some FM. So I was thinking about something I could do for a one season save to break up the full on playing of my main save. (Which I will be going back too)
I was thinking about saves and I thought to myself “I’ve not been relegated since about FM2010 so I don’t get to experience that relegation rebuild for a promotion push part of FM so what I would do is holiday and take over a relegated team but who?
As if by fate that day Roy Hodgson announced his retirement from management at the end of the season and I was reading the article and it mentioned the amount of players Palace had out of contract this summer and with Zaha wanting a move away as well I thought to myself I’d holiday and see if Palace get relegated and if by sheer luck they did!
So i took over the day after the season finished, with the target of promotion at the first time of asking and also approaching it as if it was my proper save.

So here’s what happened…

Transfers: “Wheeling and dealing”

As i mentioned above Palace had a lot of players out of contract and wanting to leave and also a Premier League wage budget so early on I decided I’d focus on two things,
1) Anyone who wants out can leave
2) Any ins should be short term moves as we don’t want to be tied down to Championship players if we get promoted.

So first we started clearing the decks.

As you can see we raised over £50m in transfer fees and cleared a lot of wages off the budget we now how a massive budget and wage space so what did I do?

Thats right! 5 season long loans and 3 short term deals.
Shane Long has a contract renewal after 20 games played so I needed to watch that as I signed all these players on 1 year deals bar Costa who has a 2 year deal.

The Tactic

Normally I’m quite conservative with my tactics but after years of Woy-ball i figured Palace could do with some entertaining attacking football so this is how I set the team up.

I wanted to take the Championship by storm and this is how we were aiming to do it.

Pre-season

5 games 5 wins, As always with pre season its about winning games getting morale and match fitness up and we achieved that.

First half of the Season

First thing to mention is cups, I won’t be talking about them apart from saying in both i played full youth teams and were knocked out straight away as this season was solely about promotion.

So it went like this….

19 wins, 5 draws, 1 loss, 68 goals scored and top of the league at the turn of the year. We literally blew everyone away as we wanted too, scoring for fun.

The problem with money

During the winter months we were subject to a takeover, Already sitting on a budget of £60m they pumped in another £140m to give us a £200m transfer budget IN THE CHAMPIONSHIP!
So I had to decide what to do..
With Promotion pretty much in the bag barring a major shock I went down the route of signing a few players ready for next season in the Premier League so that they’d have a 6 month bedding in period now.

We had a lot of loans and short term deals so I chose to address those areas.
David Brooks came in as our Zaha replacement. Choudhury and Loftus-Cheek will replace loanees Garner and Gilmour in the centre of midfield.
Perez will replace Delap and Long upfront. Doherty an upgrade on Clyne at right back. Hoedt comes in at centre back giving Sakho a Premier League quality partner and Podence to replace a highly sought after Eze whos been linked to Arsenal all season.

Second Half of the season

We continued to beat pretty much everything infront of us, breaking records for wins, goals scored, highest points etc.

As you can see it was a competitive league with 4 teams breaking the 100 points mark. So it showed how strong we were.
It’s been an enjoyable season and I’m currently playing through pre-season and seeing how I would approach it. Will i play the second season? I’m not sure yet, maybe+
But it was a fun season and I do want to head back to the ASSE save now I’ve had a break I feel refreshed and am considering taking this tactic with me!

Thats all folks!

Thanks for reading

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