I guess most of my readers find the development of my players most interesting. I find this part of my savegame most interesting as well. In the first couple of posts, I also mentioned that the results on the pitch weren’t that important to me in terms of winning silverware. And although we’ve had an incredible first season in Ligue Un, I want to keep my focus on players’ progress. Therefore, I will start this post with the development side of things and will end with our competitive results!
I’ve also decided to step away from the ‘case studies’. Yes, it is fascinating to follow a few players and talk about their development and training, but then we would miss out on other players who are developing like crazy. We’re getting new players through our annual youth intake as well, adding some of these to the list every year would see me end up with a very long list. Sadly, some of the first chosen ‘case studies’ didn’t progress as expected, which would make you think I’m not that good at developing players!
Just kidding, there are always players who are progressing well while others are, well, showing no progress whatever you do. We (read: content creators) tend to show only the good stuff, but I’ll talk about some of the less successful projects too. However, I want to generalise my content a bit. So bye-bye case studies!
But first, I want to talk about some struggle I’ve had in this savegame. Not everything goes to plan! I knew I wouldn’t be signing players and because of that, I’ve only selected the French leagues as playable. Part of the plan was to speed up the game, but I’m now having huge issues to sell players or loan them to other clubs.
This issue results in a lot of players not getting enough match experience which is worrisome for their development. I needed to fix this so decided to add a few leagues to the game with the start of next season: Belgian Pro League A, German Bundesliga, Dutch Eredivisie and the Portuguese Liga NOS. I hope this will help us to find clubs for players who aren’t getting enough game time.
Our former case study Skelly Alvero is one of the examples of being a victim of this problem. The now 19-year old striker has only played one game this season, and his development stalled because of this. He was only able to improve his composure by one point. The rest of his attributes are still the same as at the end of the first season! I hope to improve this going forward with the added leagues.
I’ve got quite some ideas about how I want to bring the blog forward. My content might change a bit over the coming posts. It’s now more lined out as a savegame story, while I want to take it to more general updates about the things I do in my save. I’m still searching for my style of updating the blog and will experiment with my updates to find something that works for me while trying to keep you engaged! We’ll see where that goes.
Let’s talk about our revelation from this season; Jessim Pellissard. While it was not entirely unforeseen, junior forward Pellissard had an unbelievable season in Ligue Un! But let me first go back to the start of this save. In my second post, which was about our key players and bright prospects from the first season, I briefly touched upon Pellissard’s ability and potential.
Jessim Pellissard is a striker, and I believe the 16-year-old could become a deadly one. Again, we have a player with a lovely attribute spread. He does need to improve his stamina from the go if he wants to play for the first-team at a young age. His balance is a point of attention too.DeRaamFM on Jessim Pellissard at the start of the first season
His technical ability is already good enough to play for us. Dribbling, finishing, first touch and technique are all at 12 already! There are no real weaknesses in his mental attributes although, he needs to become more mature overall.
I’ve talked about Pellissard in my last post too, which shows I adore the kid! He was one of the prime developers from last season, while he played only five matches in Ligue 2. He didn’t manage to score a goal or get high ratings and bagged only one assist. He played most of his matches in the B-team and was a lot more successful there. 17 goals in 17 games. He improved quite a lot. He increased almost every attribute to be well-defined.
I was a bit scared about him being too good for the B-team but not yet ready to be in the first team. I tried to loan him to other clubs, but as aforementioned, there wasn’t any interest. He could’ve easily been in Skelly Alvero’s shoes! Fortunately, I dared to test my luck, and he didn’t disappoint. Pellissard played 38 games in Ligue 1 this season, scoring 17 goals, winning five Player of the Match awards and averaging a 7.11 rating. Keep in mind that the kid is still only 18 years old, and we’re a team that got promoted last year. A true revelation!
If you’ve read my earlier posts, then you know what’s coming next; progression! Pellissard has been training the advanced forward role for two years now. I’ve changed his additional focus throughout the seasons, but he’s been working on agility and balance, attacking movement, final third and passing. He exploded at the start of the season because he was playing in Ligue 1 which is a very high level compared to his ability back then. He kept improving gradually as the season went on with another spike in March.
He has improved his attributes quite a lot since the start of the save. I’m not going to name them all as images say more than a thousand words, but here’s a little summary:
- Finishing: 12 -> 15 [+3]
- Technique: 12 -> 15 [+3]
- Anticipation: 10 -> 14 [+4]
- Decisions: 10 -> 13 [+3]
- Off the ball: 11 -> 14 [+3]
- Vision: 11 -> 14 [+3]
- Agility: 12 -> 15 [+3]
- Balance: 7 -> 12 [+5]
- Pace: 12 -> 15 [+3]
- Stamina: 10 -> 14 [+4]
- Strength: 6 -> 10 [+4]
I told you I don’t want to show you only the good stuff! It wouldn’t be fair, and I don’t want to come across as an expert or arrogant because I’m not! Multiple players had a disappointing season in terms of development. Most of them due to a lack of match experience as aforementioned, but I’m trying to fix that for next season, so we might (hopefully) see a change there!
There is, however, a player who had quite a few games during the last two seasons but hasn’t improved one bit! He was even on the list as one of the bright prospects in the first season, which makes it even more upsetting as I expected him to become quite good! Meet Bryan Lasme:
Lasme played 31 games during last season, ending up being our top scorer with 12 goals. He has played another 19 games this season, scoring two goals in Ligue 1. It should be enough to progress a bit, and he did by the end of the first season but have fallen back in development this year. 18-year-old Pellissard has taken over his job by now, and I lost my trust in him completely. I’m still debating about keeping him for another season or not..
FUTURE LOOKS BRIGHT!
While some of the players’ developments are disappointing and have issues sending players out on loan, I’m still on a very positive vibe for this save! We have so many high potential players at the club that I can’t see the wood for the trees. I need to break down the squads going into the next season to ensure that every prospect will get the right attention. The future does look bright!
There are 22(!) five-star potential players and another 7 four and a half -star potential players. And it does not end there because there are another 22 players who could make it into the first-team! I’ve never experienced this in FM. It’s astounding but hard to manage. Let’s take a look at some of the most promising youngsters who are close to breaking in the first-team!
I think I’ve mentioned Ndiaye at an earlier stage in this save. The 19-year old midfielder has progressed nicely and is now ready for a more prominent spot in the first-team. The youngster – dubbed the new Luis Fernandez – has played eight Ligue 2 games, and participated in another twenty matches this season. Ndiaye is a very versatile player. He’s at his best in the centre of midfield, where he can play any role but could function as a winger on the right as well.
Sidy Diagne was one of my case studies at the start of this save. He’s the only one that is developing as expected. The 19-year old central defender is slowly becoming a regular starter for us. Diagne played three games in Ligue 2 but had fifteen games in Ligue 1, averaging a 7.10 rating which is very good for a youngster. I’d like to keep him around, but Liverpool is currently interested, so we might want to sell. If he stays, he’ll be our main central defender next to Maxence Lacroix.
18-year old winger Alan Virginius exploded this season. His development makes me very happy. He played one Ligue 2 game in the first season with some added cup games. Since we lost some loanees from the first year, I’ve taken the plunge with him. Virginius played 33 games in Ligue 1 this season, scored five goals and assisted another seven. Not a bad result from such a young player! Alan played on our right wing this season, but a change in formation for next season could see him retrained as a central attacking midfielder.
I have high hopes for 18-year old midfielder Malcom Nebodon. Malcom hasn’t played many games to date but has progressed significantly. He played in two matches in Ligue 2 and had some games (6) from the bench this season. Nebodon is a versatile midfielder who can play different roles in defensive, central and attacking midfield. I can easily see him break in the first-team next year!
Mathéo Sanchez is another 18-year old attacking midfielder. Sanchez is a highly technical player who’s developing well. He had one game of the bench this year but has played the rest of his games for the youth teams during the last two seasons. It’s now time for him to step up his game and break into the first team. Sanchez could play in central midfield or upfront too. I like him to be a playmaker but could see him turn into a deadly shadow striker in the long run.
Promising full-back Killian Camele – what’s in a name – has played a few matches for the first team. The 18-year old has spent most of his time in the U19 squad but has progressed very well. He’s ready to compete for a spot in the first-team going forward.
We’ve got our right-back position covered with 17-year old Nolan Galves. He has made his debut in a cup game during last season but spent the rest of his time in the U19. He’s now ready for more, and I plan to get rid of Pape Paye for him to move into the first team and be a back-up to M’Bakata.
16-year old Jean-Pierre Lemarié (what a name!) is the first newgen on this list who came through our first youth intake. This guy is going to get far and has already attracted interest from PSG! He made his debut in Ligue 1 and will feature in the first team next year. I’m not sure about what role he should play yet, but whatever it is going to be, this kid is going to get really good!
As I said, the list is much longer but these players are going to play a big part in our plans for next season. All of them will get sufficient match experience, and I can’t wait to see how this will affect their development!
I’m going to wrap this up. Images say more than a thousand words, and I don’t think our competitive results are that important for this save. We aim to develop players and want to produce some of the world’s best, that’s our goal. So here we go:
And we’ve improved some of our facilities along the way:
- Junior Coaching: Good –> Exceptional
- Youth Recruitment: Adequate –> Excellent
- Update Youth Facilities: In Progress
Well, I mentioned a couple of times that I want to change my updates and generalise more. I think I’ll step away from the seasonal updates for a bit and focus more on my development strategies and write about what I do in training. Off course, I’ll keep you up to date on the players’ progress and stuff, but I think these updates will be over multiple seasons.
Writing these updates is slowing me down by quite a bit. I was eager to play FM20 for the last couple of days but couldn’t progress this save because I had to write this blog first. It has annoyed me a bit and therefore writing in more general terms/subjects could improve my personal game experience.
I’ve now planned to write about my development strategies first, which will spread over multiple posts. I need to change my tactics with all these players coming through, and want to write about that too. After that, I’ll be back with the players’ development update, but it might cover a season or three.
If you’ve made it this far, I want to thank you for reading! Make sure you follow me on Twitter, and if you need anything, my DM’s are open.
Hope to see you next time!