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Career Concord Rangers: Champions on the Cheap?

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A shame this club decided to change their logo. The old one is a 100 times nicer which is why I couldn't resist managing them. 


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8 hours ago, Niall C said:

Hell of a challenge you set yourself but looking forward to seeing how it pans out. Great start KIU. :D

I'm looking forward to seeing how it pans out as well ??

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Season 1 - End of Season Update

August: From the previous update, you know that we started in brilliant form, winning all of our first five league games, with Jordan Brown hitting the back of the net on nine occasions. We played two more games in this month, with Brown continuing his fine form with a double as we won 2-0 at St. Albans, which was followed by the joint highest scoring game for us in the whole season, a game with 8 shots on target between the teams ending up in a 6-3 victory for us at home to Chelmsford. Jordan Brown did not feature in this game!


Safe to say then, that August was a good month for us! 7 games played, 7 games won, and 25 goals scored in the process.



September: Could we maintain our early season form in September? The first test for this was an away game against Hungerford. Unfortunately for us we fell at the first hurdle, as a first minute strike followed up by goals either side of half time gave us far too much to do, and we couldn't manage to salvage anything from the game.



What I wanted now from the team was a reaction, and I managed to get one in the next game vs Eastbourne Borough, where 4 goals from Jordan Brown helped us to a 5-0 win. We had four more games to play in this month, where we managed two wins, including a comfortable 6-1victory in the FA Cup Third Qualifying Round, and two more defeats, both in the league. The last of those two losses, a 2-0 defeat at Hampton and Richmond was notable for the fact it was the first time Concord Rangers had failed to score this season. In fact, before this game we had managed to hit the back of the net at least twice in every game. September then, wasn't a bad month, but still felt a bit disappointing after August.


October: There were six games for us to get through in October, including the next round of the FA Cup qualifiers, where we got past Chorley, a 3-1 win seeing us progress to the FA Cup 1st round, where we were drawn against League Two opposition, Newport County. We'd soon have a chance to see if we could cope with a step up in class. We also played five more league games this month, continuing our high scoring start to the season, with scorelines including 4-1, 5-1 and 5-2. 



November: The first game of November would likely be our hardest test yet, with the visit of a team two divisions above us for the FA Cup 1st round. Would we be able to get a result?




Yes! A great result for us, and we are rewarded with another hard test in the next round, this time against League One side MK Dons.

Just two league games were played in November, with our good start being maintained by wins over Welling and Chippenham. Whitehawk were also our opponents at the end of the month, in the FA Trophy third qualifying round. We'd started the month of with a great cup result, could we end with one?




Unfortunately not. A close game was decided by a 90th minute goal for the home team, and we were out.

A month of mixed emotions then. Unhappy to be knocked out of a cup competition so early, but at least we're still in the big one!



December: Again, we start the month with a cup tie against higher level opposition. In the week between our FA Trophy defeat and our upcoming game against MK Dons, I decided I wanted another option for up top, and so in came Jacob Blyth.



Would he be able to make an impact against The Dons? 





Oh, yes he would! A dream debut double gives us another memorable FA Cup tie, and we advance to the third round. Could we get a glamour draw against Premier League opposition? No, but again our opponents came from the next division up from the previous, Derby County of the Championship being our next game in the competition.

This cup tie was followed by four league games, a 2-1 defeat to Hemel Hempstead being our only loss, as we won the other three games, including a 5-1 win against Wealdstone, as Blyth helped himself to a hatrick, and two assists to top it off. 


So, we'd reached the end of the year in good shape, the loss in the FA Trophy still the only real disappointment in an excellent season so far. The league table at the end of 2017 showed that we were still the dominant team in the league, 9pts clear of  Welling after 23 games, and comfortably outscoring the teams around us.



January: 2018 started how 2017 ended with game against East Thurrock in the league. This time however, we couldn't get the win, an 81st minute East Thurrock goal meant the game ended 2-2 and we had our first draw of the whole season. The next game was the biggest of our season so far, as we came up against Derby in the FA Cup. Could there be another cup upset on the cards? 




A battling performance from us ultimately resulted in a defeat to a much superior Derby County. However, as we exit the competition, the players can definitely leave with their heads held high.

After the cup game, it was back to league business, where we had a mixed bag of results. Two wins, a draw and a 3-2 defeat away to Truro. 
There was a departure from the club this month, with Larnell Cole leaving to go to Wycombe. Cole had been a regular source of goals and assists, but the £170,000 offered was too much to refuse, and allowed us to get our wages back in budget, as well as hire a scout and a physio. Kundai Benyu, formerly of Ipswich and Celtic was also brought in, given a chance to see what he could do.




February: Knocked out of both cups, we now just had the league as our sole focus. We started of well, with a 4-0 win over Oxford City, before an away game against Weston-super-Mare resulted in our biggest defeat of the season. 


However, we got back on track with wins against Gloucester and Welling. 



March: March was a good month for the team. An 89th minute penalty giving Whitehawk a 4-3 win against us at the end of the month was the only negative, as we matched our highest scoring game of the season, with a big win over Chippenham. The 6-3 scoreline meant that we'd hit over 100 league goals for the season so far.


Every game in March was a high scoring affair, a 7-1 win against St. Albans, our biggest winning margin of the season, coming in the same month as 4-1 and 5-3 victories. 




April: Into the last month of our season, and we were doing well. Our next game was away to second placed Chelmsford, and a win would all but guarantee the league trophy heading our way. We lost the game, however. A 4-2 defeat seemed a bit unfair in an as expected closely matched game.


We were still clear favourites for the title though, and if we won the next game we would be crowned champions. Could we do it?




Yes we could!!! A routine 2-0 win gives us the title! 


We finished the season with three more league games, and after only two draws all season, we decided we wanted a few more, with high scoring draws in each game, including a 4-4 draw on the last day sure to keep the neutrals interested!



So, the end of the season had arrived, and Concord Rangers, labelled relegation strugglers by their own board, had won the league, scoring 133 goals in the process!


Unsuprisingly, players from our team dominated the leaderboards, with 8 of the 10 leading assisters being Concord Rangers players.


And 3 of the top 5 goalscorers were also our players, with Jordan Brown scoring more than double his nearest challenger.



As manager, I also did not too badly ;) Screenshot_2017-11-14-08-00-30.thumb.png.30d8c01de0878201fc32e0b25ca9722b.png


Overall, probably as good a season as I could have hoped for. Defending is something I want to try to sort out for next season, as I'm conceding a lot of goals. But really, as long as I'm winning, who cares? ;):P 

We've taken the first step on our journey, and now we have to see if we can keep it going next season, in a new division. Will we be able to? We'll just have to wait and see....


Edited by Aaron55

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3 minutes ago, Rocket said:

Quality update mate. Looking forward to next season already!

Thanks! And me too :D:laugh:

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7 minutes ago, FuddledFox said:

Excellent start. I think the national league needs to watch out!

Only played 3 league games, but I'd have to agree so far ?

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Season 2 - End of Season Update

Promoted to the National League on the first attempt last season, how would Concord Rangers cope with the step up? 

July/August: Obviously, improvements to the squad would be required to help achieve a good season, so in came players such as Conor Randall, formerly of Liverpool, and another striker, Lewis Mansell, to give high scoring Jordan Brown some more competition. Two new goalkeepers were also bought in, along with additions to the defence and midfield. Some fringe players from last season were also let go.


Not that Jordan Brown by the way!

So, we went in to pre-season in good shape, with four  games to be played against teams from around our level, resulting in three wins and a 3-3 draw. Decent preparation for the upcoming season. 

The opening league fixture would be against Torquay at home, giving us a chance to lay down a marker for the season. Could we get off to a good start?


Screenshot_2017-11-14-19-40-06.thumb.png.79def9f903ba60bae4b2cb001cdcf6bd.pngYes we could! A hatrick on his competitive debut for Mansell, and Jordan Brown also on the scoresheet. 

About as good a start as we could have dreamed of, really making  the rest of the league take notice of us! The question now, how  would we get on in our second game, with expectations now high? 


Screenshot_2017-11-14-19-51-25.thumb.png.b3a27fb6c7af6ad141dd7f31389b9455.pngBy scoring six again! Tranmere were the opponents this time, and it was Jordan Brown's turn to hit a hatrick! 

An amazing start to the league season was followed by two more league fixtures in August, with wins by two goals achieved against Boreham Wood and Chorley. Four wins out of four to start the season, and we were early league leaders! 



September:  Seven league games were to be played this month, including against Chester, where the scoring was opened in spectacular style, Kean Bryan scoring from his own half! 


That game would finish 3-1 to us, and followed wins away to Ebbsfleet and at home to Hampton and Richmond. Three further victories followed, giving us a perfect six, and left our 100% record intact. One game remained, however, with the visit of Maidstone. Unfortunately, a 90th minute penalty for them was enough for them to take a point from the game. We still remained unbeaten after 11 league games. (Forgot to take a screenshot for these fixtures, sorry). 


October: A brilliant season so far, and we are feeling good! What could possibly go wrong for us this month?! 


Screenshot_2017-11-16-18-18-01.thumb.png.ec38e48e363f0f5d796ca5b5807ea2d9.pngOh. Oh no. Anything but this. Our star striker on his way out and nothing we can do about it. On the bright side, we still have him until January. 

The team could be forgiven for being distracted by the bad news, and what followed was our first defeat of the season, away to Leyton Orient, where a late own goal resulted in a 3-2 scoreline. As if to further evidence what we would miss, Brown got both our goals in the game. Screenshot_2017-11-16-18-24-55.thumb.png.d30ced649015221c10f07f5af03e34d3.png

We dropped more points in the next game, a 3-3 draw against Barrow. In the other league games this month, we managed two wins, and another defeat, 1-0 this time, as Newport County made the journey home with 3 points in the bag. Our first game in the FA Cup was also this month, a qualifier against Chester. Two late goals, including an injury time equaliser from none other than Jordan Brown, salvaged us a replay from a game where we had been 2-0 down. 


We wouldn't want to leave it so late in the replay. How did we do? 


Screenshot_2017-11-17-07-34-21.thumb.png.2c57fd9262cca38e87e053b5a1ca53c5.pngMuch better! A fantastic result, and we're into the FA Cup first round, where we will face Bristol City. 

Our worst month for results so far then, with only 3 wins from 7 games. We remain top of the league, a point above Tranmere. 


November: We had our FA Cup game this month, and after our run to the third round last season, hopes were high we could do the same this year. Over 15,000 fans watched as we visited Bristol City. Was there going to be a cup upset?


Screenshot_2017-11-17-14-21-59.thumb.png.625ba1b5b107e6bf064c83fae129d35b.pngNo. We were outclassed, and a 2-0 win for the home side sees them progress at our expense. 

The team had started the month with a win over Macclesfield in the league, and three further league matches saw us claim seven points, a 1-1 draw vs Wrexham being the only dropped points this month. 


December: We would be busy over the Christmas period, with seven games to be played, including the FA Trophy first round. We were knocked out in our first game of the competition last season. Would we do any better this time? 


Screenshot_2017-11-17-19-11-21.thumb.png.3ba9cea26cc681898618a605506bffac.pngNot after that performance, we wouldn't. So we were now out of both cups in the first round. Disappointing to say the least. 

League results this month were good though, the only dropped points coming via a 1-1 draw, again. A thumping 5-0 win against second placed Tranmere would certainly do us no harm in the race for the title, as our second victory over them this season opened up a six point lead at the top. Screenshot_2017-11-18-19-17-17.thumb.png.f566785a796640ec2065e671896fd144.pngScreenshot_2017-11-18-19-17-10.thumb.png.50019137252696bbbf278cbcec70e4a9.png

January: Jordan Brown played 71 games for our club, scoring 82 times, and also laying on 19 goals for his team mates. An average rating of around 8.2 emphasises his importance to the team. But now he was gone. Lured up north by Hibernian, of the Scottish Premier League. A hero in his time at the club, he leaves with our best wishes. We managed to also bring in two more players to the squad, with Will Buckley and Rodney Kongolo adding their talents to the team. 


We only played 4 games in January, recording three wins, and a narrow 1-0 defeat at home vs Hampton and Richmond. These results left us still at the top of the table, but Tranmere were closing in, now only 3 points behind. 


February: Four more games were to be played, and not for the first time, a 1-1 draw would see us miss out on maximum points, despite picking up wins against AFC Fylde, Bromley, and Guiseley. Tranmere were now just two points off the pace, granted we had a game in hand. 


March: With seven games this month, would we be able to secure the results to keep us at the top? Well, five wins and two draws, on top of Tranmere losing to a team that wasn't us for the first time in the league this season, saw us reach the 100 point mark, 13 clear at the top, though this time Tranmere had a game more still to play. Surely though, it was just a matter of time until the league title was ours? Screenshot_2017-11-19-16-04-09.thumb.png.52fb87dbb8628f032f9d5f29f9274e58.pngScreenshot_2017-11-19-15-04-04.thumb.png.1a2ae2e54705973727f5cae4de0c5ffe.png

April/May: Five games were to be played over these two months, and would finally decide who would win the league. Before any games were played, we got the news that the UK had left the EU, and work permits would now be required for EU players. 


On to the games, and first up was the visit of Wrexham. We won the game 1-0, which was maybe an undeserved result, but this scoreline, on top of Tranmere drawing there game, saw us crowned champions! We would be playing League Two football next season! On a personal note, I also received my Gold coaching badge. Screenshot_2017-11-19-15-27-34.thumb.png.c201abd5cd1b40142533bfbb99316ecc.pngScreenshot_2017-11-19-15-27-47.thumb.png.069b96b5659bb1e90e488e30578b20d0.png

That left us four games to go, three of which ended up level, and one which we won 2-0 against Solihull Moors, meaning we finished the season with 109 points, clear at the top by 17! Only conceding 23 league goals was nice, as I said before, I wanted to try to be better defensively. 


This season left my managerial record looking good! 


My transfer acumen so far has been excellent according to this, and before I go, here's a sneak peek at my transfer business so far for my first season in League Two! Can our new players help us win the league for a third year running? Hopefully! Screenshot_2017-11-19-18-18-59.thumb.png.28dd20e4c23bee1ca8aca854233f42ea.pngScreenshot_2017-11-19-18-18-54.thumb.png.f68c657031a3a769fabac0b9b97c25b0.png

Edited by Aaron55

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Thats some tasty end of season points tally...anyone come calling for you yet??

Great read love how its presented. 

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2 minutes ago, kylieboi88 said:


Thats some tasty end of season points tally...anyone come calling for you yet??

Great read love how its presented. 

Yeah, had some teams come in for me. Raith Rovers, Tranmere and Morecambe were a few of them if I remember correctly.

And thanks, glad you liked it  :)

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21 hours ago, Ashez said:

Absolutely smashed it mate! Now the challenge begins though! 

Yeah, looking forward to it! :D

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What a great season! From my experience of last year's game anyway, there's not that much difference in quality between the Conference and League 2 so I expect another promotion ;)

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Outstanding stuff! Making it look easy there. The team seems more than ready for the next step. Can't wait to see how you fare a league up. :)

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9 hours ago, samhardy said:

What a great season! From my experience of last year's game anyway, there's not that much difference in quality between the Conference and League 2 so I expect another promotion ;)

No pressure then! :laugh:

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Season 3 - End of Season Update

At the end of the season, this happened.


Was that because of increasing interest in the other European top divisions, or was everyone just too busy watching the progress of Concord Rangers? If so, let's see if it was worth their time... 

July/August: At the end of my last update I showed my transfers in and out for the upcoming season. Players such as Chuba Akpom, former Arsenal striker,  ex-Leicester City winger Harvey Barnes, and attacking midfielder Kieran Dowell, formerly of Everton were bought in, with some of my lesser used players leaving, including Kundai Benyu, Danny Parish, and Robbie Tinkler, who ended up joining big spending Billericay Town. 

Our new look team had a good pre-season of preparation for our upcoming League Two campaign, playing four friendlies, and winning them all, including 6-0 and 8-0 away victories against Bognor Regis and Welling. We'd shown we had more than enough to take on teams at that level, but the important  question was how would we cope up against opposition from our own division?

The league season started with the visit of Colchester, and after a goalless first half, new signing Akpom got his first competitive goals for the club, hitting a second half hatrick to ensure the three points would be ours. 


A solid start in the league, then. The next game was likely to be a tougher one for us, as Fulham were the visitors in the Carabao Cup first round. Our first time in this competition. Could we advance to the next round?


Screenshot_2017-11-20-02-16-58.thumb.png.6c18133fcc6118174c58f7a1b95d4f69.pngUnfortunately not. Although we did at least manage to take the game to extra time. 

Four more league games were played in August, with four wins achieved, including 3-0 and 4-0 scorelines against Tranmere and Doncaster. Five wins out of five in the league meant we ended the month top of the table, already four points clear. 




September: We started off the month with another new trophy to aim for, this time travelling to Peterborough for the first group game of the Checkatrade Trophy. An exciting end to the game, which saw three late goals scored, ended up being a 3-2 win for us, and meant we got off to a good start in the competition. 


As for league business, we had five games to play. A 3-1 victory over Forest Green, and a 4-0 home win against Cambridge came before picked up the three points against Gateshead, Crewe, and Gillingham. Five wins out of five ensuring that we stay in pole position. A lot of credit has to go to the on-fire Chuba Akpom, who has scored in every league  game this season so far. 






October: League games were our only focus this month, with no cup games to be played. There was another late flurry of goals in one of our six games, with four goals split into evenly  between the teams after the 84th minute, following two earlier goals for Concord, resulting in a 4-2 defeat for home team, AFC Wimbledon. 


This game came in between further victories, Bristol Rovers, Grimsby, Cheltenham, Accrington and Shrewsbury being the other victims of the so far unstoppable charge to the title from Concord. 




November: Our winning streak came to an end at the start of November, a late Yeovil goal ensuring each team would come away with a point. Following the game we received news that our dependable left-back Kieran Wallace, who I had signed while we were still in the Vanarama National League South, would soon be leaving the club, his big club release clause meaning we were powerless to reject the £45,000 bids from Kilmarnock and Lincoln. Wallace would decide to follow the path of Jordan Brown, in moving to play his football in Scotland. 

Meanwhile, we had two Cup games coming up back-to-back, an FA Cup first round tie vs York,  being followed by the second Checkatrade Trophy group game, where we'd play Charlton. After losing at the first round stage of the FA Cup last year, would we be able to make more progress this time? 


Screenshot_2017-11-22-06-12-45.thumb.png.76f5280a65e329ffd28cc1bbd5eded11.pngYes! The team deserves great credit for coming back from losing two early goals to eventually win comfortably. The second round draw saw us paired with Blackburn. 

The game against Charlton would end in a 2-2 draw, and after winning a penalty shoot-out, we claimed an extra bonus point. Four more league fixtures were scheduled for this month, and we finished how we started, with a 1-1 draw vs Crawley. Big wins were achieved in the other three games though, scoring 17 goals in the process of beating Chesterfield, Stevenage, and Rochdale. Chuba Akpom would score 10 of those 17 goals himself, continuing his fine form. 




December: Our first game of December would be the visit of Blackburn in the FA Cup second round. A tough test for sure, how would we do? 



Not bad. Was tough losing a goal that late, especially after they went down to ten men, but a replay it was to be.

The next game would also be a second round Cup game, Gillingham the visitors in the Checkatrade Trophy. An injury to right-back Todd Kane being the only negative in a comfortable 6-1 victory. 


A double from Chuba Akpom then helped us to a 3-0 league victory over Carlisle, although with just over double the number of shots and shots on targets that we had, Carlisle could justifiably be annoyed not to come away with anything.

Back to the FA Cup, and the replay against Blackburn. One team would definitely be leaving the competition today. Who would it be? 



Us. A narrow defeat sees us knocked out the competition. This being our first loss of the whole season. 

Three league games were still to be played, and Akpom scored nine more goals as we defeated Notts County and Morecambe, and drew 2-2 with Colchester. So, after 25 league games, Concord would be well on track for promotion, 17 points clear of second placed Rochdale, and still to be beaten in the league. 



January: January started off with wins over Tranmere and Doncaster, before Fleetwood were the spectators in the Chuba Akpom show, his six goals giving Concord a 7-1 victory. These goals meant Akpom had astonishingly already scored 65 goals for the season, 59 of them coming in the league. 



Next up was the Checkatrade Trophy third round, Bristol Rovers becoming the latest team to lose to us, as a 4-2 victory saw us into the next round. 


We followed this result up with two draws in the league, including a brilliant comeback from being 4-1 down at half-time away to Cambridge, ensuring our unbeaten league run didn't come to an end. 


At the end of January we were now 21 points clear of our nearest challenger. 


Also in this month, we bought in Jack Doyle on loan to replace Wallace at left back. 

February: A 4-0 win over Gateshead started off the month, before a quarter-final match up against Yeovil in the Checkatrade Trophy. A hatrick from the impressive Akpom saw us through to the next round. 


League wins against Crewe, Gillingham, Bristol City and  Grimbsy followed, before the Checkatrade Trophy semi-final against Luton. We would eventually lose out on penalties, but were lucky to get that far. 


Disheartened at losing out on out last chance of a cup win this season, we headed back to league business. A 90+4' strike for Cheltenham meant they won the game 3-2,and we had lost our first league game. However, we were now 22 clear at the top, and surely going to end the season as champions. 




March: We had four games to play in March, winning against AFC Wimbledon and Accrington meant that winning our next game against Shrewsbury would guarantee us the league title. A hatrick, unsurprisingly from Akpom, would give us a 3-2 win, and we were champions! 


Three more points were added to our total with a win over Yeovil at the end of the month. Screenshot_2017-11-22-13-53-57.thumb.png.867047bf9f78cf56347c74dc11665acc.png


April/May: Only the last six games of the season remained, and unlike previous years where we would draw most of the games, we won them all without conceding a goal. Screenshot_2017-11-22-16-22-17.thumb.png.93d7e93dde937a1015604d5769f17516.pngScreenshot_2017-11-22-16-22-21.thumb.png.e0995b922f35adeae222a3743ea1156c.png

147 goals scored, 125 points and only one loss! Not bad! 

Our top performer this season will not be a shock, Chuba Akpom far and away being the highest goalscorer. In fact, he scored more league goals than any other team in the league, and scored over 100 goals in all competitions! This amazing run of form saw him awarded a place in the team of the year along with three other team mates, as well as player of the month in every single month, except May! Screenshot_2017-11-22-16-22-31.thumb.png.2249f8960c89339521e5a11919784796.pngScreenshot_2017-11-22-16-29-00.thumb.png.bec45346ffd8f5529d18b8250919e289.pngScreenshot_2017-11-22-16-30-44.thumb.png.476c63fb232d6f43cf58791eece7c189.pngScreenshot_2017-11-22-16-50-48.thumb.png.34aed2c3a16c671786fbbed56d7ee9a3.png

Couldn't have hoped for a better season! Same again next year? Let's hope so! :D

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Jesus Christ! 90 league goals for Chuba Akpom! Make sure you have no clauses in his contract whatsoever, tie him down!

Incredible stuff mate, well done.

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This is turning out to be truly exceptional dude....your making my go on last years game a poor attempt ?

KIU and very well done so far!

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1 hour ago, ManLikeRobbieBrady said:

Jesus Christ! 90 league goals for Chuba Akpom! Make sure you have no clauses in his contract whatsoever, tie him down!

Incredible stuff mate, well done.

Already on a big club release clause, won't sign a new contract, wants to move to a big club, and is unhappy with me for saying he was not for sale ?

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46 minutes ago, samhardy said:

That's unbelievable! Best season I've seen on 18 so far by a mile. How did Harvey Barnes do and what's his stats like this year?


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