in FM17, No one likes us

“No one likes us…” RBS Season 5 Winter Break

Philipp Lahm’s first season in charge of RBS brought the return of trophies to Salzburg. The club’s baron spell is over after domestic success, winning both the Bundesliga and the cup last season. Quite a lot of that success was down to some very successful loanees from RBL, which proves the model is working. Well, at least one way of it. We’re yet to really reap any benefits from the RBS to RBL side of the model, despite a few players going in that direction. More on this later on.

We’ve hit the winter break in Austria too now, as well as in Germany, so it’s time to take a look at our summer business and the first half of the season.

Transfers

Out

Quite a few outgoings over the summer in Salzburg. There will always be quite a bit of turnover at RBS as we build the club up again after years of AI mismanagement.

You’ve already seen the biggest outgoing of the summer, as Lukas Kalkan moved to RBL for £6.25m. Ajax were sniffing around him, so our hand was forced to keep him within the Red Bull Revolution.

Pablo Mari and Allan move on for a combined £4.5m. Good fees to get for two players that arrived on free transfers. More evidence for the benefits of sign to sell. Asger Sorensen and Marko Raguz were never going to be properly nail down 1st team spots, so they move on for a combined fee of £1m. Every little helps. A couple of players move on after their contracts expired, and we send a fair few of players out on loan too.

In

Our incomings fall into three categories. Relatively cheap transfers that we can play and sell on, free transfers that we can sell and play on and loans from RBL that we can give some gametime too to develop them.

Here’s a few screenshots of the most notable transfers in. Michalis Papoutsogiannopoulos just looks like your typical no-nonsense central defender. Delighted I’m not a YouTuber so I don’t have to pronounce his name. He’ll slot in to the defence and we’ll hopefully make some decent profit on him. Konrad Laimer is a homegrown RBS player, who’d left a few seasons prior for Milan but as is so often the case, hadn’t made a breakthrough. He returns to provide competition for the 3 AMC slots.

Bennacer, Boga and Heynen all arrive on free transfers and will be competing for slots in the midfield too. Bennacer and Heynen probably with each other. I love scouring the free transfer market for players I think we’ll get a decent amount for when they come to move on.

Andrija Zivkovic is a name you’ll surely recognise, he hadn’t progressed well enough to break into Benfica’s team and was available for what I thought was a relatively cheap £3m.

Piotr Orlowski, Nicolas Ziegler, Roman Kovar and Vitaly Janelt all arrive on loan from RBL. Janelt is a somewhat veteran now, despite being only 22. He’s been at Leipzig since our arrival there, but has fallen out of favour and will be seeking gametime at RBS. I showed you Kovar in the RBL update, as soon as he arrived he was farmed off to RBS. Ziegler arrives as cover for the strikeforce and is still very young at just 18. I’ve got very high hopes for Orlowski. After a season in the Salzburg 1st team, I’m hoping to have him in and around the Leipzig 1st team next season.

The league

We started well, going unbeaten in our first 9 matches. Form started to dip after our first loss of the season against Austria Wien. We well and truly battered them, but of course, they scored 2 goals from their 3 shots on target. While we were wasteful from our 28 in total. Some great wins towards the end of the first half of the season though, scoring 20 goals across the five wins after that Kapfenberger loss, with three draws spread out across the final 8 matches. I hate Kapfenberger. No wins against them in both matches played so far this season. We always seem to pick up a bogey team each season.

We’re top, but only just. There’s a title fight on the go. Rapid pushed us all the way last season, and they’re back again this season. Draws have been our downfall so far, and we really need to cut them out and turn our dominance into more goals, and more wins. I know we’re top of the league, but domestic expectations are high. We should be doing much better.

Champions League

You’ll of already seen from the RBL update that the inevitable happened and we were drawn in the same group as our big brothers from Leipzig. Before all that though, we had to get through three rounds of qualifying. The first two were negotiated without stress, including a good couple of wins against Dinamo Zagreb. We fell to a 3-1 defeat in Bucharest against Steaua, but staged one of those classic 2nd leg FM comebacks to reach the group stage.

Heavy defeats away at Inter, and home and away against City were disappointing but expected, to be honest. We went into the group stage with low expectations, but didn’t change the way we were set up. Getting two draws was unexpected, and we’ll hopefully be back next year to put up more of a fight in an easier group!

Domestic Cup

Relatively comfortable progress so far in our bid to retain the OFB-Cup. We had to overcome a tough Wacker side in extra time, and we’ll be facing our foes, Kapfenberger in the quarter final. I would love it, love it, if we beat them.

Who’s got wings?

13 goals in 15 starts for Tammy Abraham. Some important goals across the season so far, especially in the Champions League qualifying rounds, plus a goal in the group stage to earn a draw against Inter. 4 assists thrown in as well, mainly playing in the shadow striker role. He was originally signed as I had an idea to try and sell him back to England for a premium after Brexit, but he’s playing very well. Could he be the next one to make the leap to Leipzig?

Going forward

A season and a half has passed since we took over the reigns in Salzburg as well as Leipzig. We had to get RBS back on a sound footing after years of AI mis-management. I didn’t entirely set out a proper strategy for what would happen between the two clubs though, other than mentioning I wanted to buy and develop players at RBS with a view to them moving on to RBL, eventually. There wasn’t any timescales or goals aligned with that. I’m going to get my thinking cap on and come up with something proper on this point, it’ll perhaps be a separate post or included in the end of season summary. In the meantime though, have you got any suggestions of what you think I should be aiming for player development-wise between the two clubs? Let me know and I’ll factor that in to my thinking!

#FMSlack

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