Hello and welcome to Les Aiglons/ Bonjour et bienvenue Les Aiglons.
In this post, I will aim to give an overview of the first two seasons of my save, with Les Aiglons, more commonly known as OGC Nice who play in Ligue 1 in France.
I’ve never written a blog, so this is a completely off the cuff style of presenting my progress, so will be more than happy to take suggestions on how I can make the content more readable going forward.
As a pre-requisite I would just like to thank Oaky-FM, from_eleven_one and _blackcaesar_a5 for the taking their time to follow the status of my save over at my slack channel and encouraging me to encapsulate the progress in this blog.
To set the scene and define the logic in why I have decided to manage Nice in this iteration of Football Manager:
As some of you may or may not know, Nice were taken over in July 2019, by INEOS, a multinational chemical company owned by Britain’s richest man Sir Jim Ratcliffe. This may not sound like a reason to manage a club; however, my profession ties me quite closely to this company at present and I wanted to establish a link to real life to add some realism value to my save, something I have not done in the past.
Further to the above reasoning, it was important to me that I wasn’t taking over a well-established European player, as I wanted some room to develop the team into a consistent European player. Alongside this I wanted there to be a reasonable pool of talented youngsters at the club in order to develop a good core for the future and sufficient facilities to be able to develop these players.
So, without further ado let’s get into the review of season one, you will have to excuse the lack of screenshots as I didn’t take many as I was not blogging this save.
The first season saw us ending up finishing in ninth place, which was in line with the board’s expectations, however, I can’t help but feeling that with the squad we had this was a slight underachievement. On the other hand, after the start to the season we had I was very relived to end up finishing in the top half of the table, as we never actually eclipsed eighth place at any point of the season.
If it were not for a particularly good run of form from February onwards, I don’t think that we would have been the Nice manager going into season two. This good run of form seemingly come from the changes we made to the tactic, which ended being as seen below. I cannot pretend to be anything of a master tactician so I will not go into any depth on the tactics.
Again due to this being an unplanned blog, I’ve removed the players from the lineup in order to show the tactic.
Despite only finishing ninth in the league, we were still able to conjure up a Europa League spot with a win in the Coupe de France final versus PSG. In what I can only describe as an actual overpowering of the runaway league winners. A dominant display from Kirian seen him bag two rare goals and the assist for Kasper Dolberg’s goal.
We have a modest transfer budget, which saw us spend a total of £4.3 million in the first season. A lot of transfer activity with my Director of Football going slightly overboard on the youth recruitment. From the signings below five are still with the club, with one of these out on loan and another about the leave the club.
The director of football did manage to pull a diamond from the rough, with the signing of Rayan Goncalves from Nantes for just £15.5k. A versatile defensive midfielder, who has become a mainstay in our lineup in season three.
The key signing being a talented young Belgian prospect from Anderlecht by the name of Albert Sambi Lokonga, who operated mainly in the advanced playmaker role, but is best suited to being a mezzala. We signed him for a grand total of £525k, a steal in my opinion.
N.B – Slight spoiler, this is a season four screenshot of Lokonga, as I lost my season one screenshot.
There were three standout players for me in season one, one in each line of the team.
Firstly up, was Mr. Dependable at the back, Malang Sarr. He was solid as a rock for us at the back alongside a bit of a merry go round of a centre back pairing, with us unable to settle on the right combination.
However, he appeared in thirty-five of thirty eight games, missing two via suspension and one via illness.
Secondly, was the main man in the midfield, Danilo, a man of versatility. He played every role across the midfield until we finally settled on the tactic mentioned above where he settled as first choice deep lying playmaker.
He only contributed to one assist in twenty-one starts in Ligue 1, but I could’ve swore he had ten.
Lastly, the main man, the hitman of Les Aiglons. By far my favorite player in the game so far, and a clinical finisher. Kasper Dolberg, the man of Ajax fame who bagged eighteen in thirty-six and contributing to five assists.
Thanks for taking the time to read Les Aiglons season one, and hope you will stick with me for the upcoming seasons where I promise I will take more interesting and relevant screenshots.
A further thanks to Ondrej for allowing me to host my blog on his website, it is much appreciated.