Unione Sportiva Cremonese | Summer 2039

The Season So Far

After the poor start to the season last time around from legendary forward James Nwokolo, I felt a changed was needed this year. To that end, heading into this season the first team attack has been spearheaded by Enea Silvestri, while Cyril Bertin moved inside from the right wing to play upfront for the B-Team. So far the result of this change has been pretty positive with Silvestri scoring four goals in back to back wins against Vicenza and Sassuolo but the real test will come against much tougher opposition, most notably in the Champions League.

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Legendary Switzerland and Cremonese keeper Wettstein retires

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You wait six years for a retirement and, of course, two come along at the same time. Hot on the heels of Dmitry Kalinin’s retirement this summer comes the sad departure of Nicola Wettstein. For the past sixteen years, the Cremonese goal has been filled by the six-foot-five-inch frame of the Swiss keeper but come the beginning of next season there will be a rather noticeable absence of the big number thirteen from the Cremonese line-up.

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Cremonese stalwart Dmitry Kalinin retires

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The past few decades at Cremonese have been marked by a long period of stability at the club, which is due in no small part to a core group of elite players forming the driving force through which much success has come. Barring the retirement of Kurt Zouma some six years previous, the only players to leave the club over the past twenty years or so have been those deemed unworthy or unable to further serve the interest of the club. However, with that core group of players getting old the situation will soon begin to change and the retirement of Dmitry Kalinin this summer appears to herald a new era of legends departing.

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Unione Sportiva Cremonese | Season 2038/39: Rebel Rebel

League Performance

Our utter domination of Serie A continued this year and not just in regards to actually winning the league as this season also brought yet another unbeaten campaign. Making it a run of 106 games since we last tasted defeat in Serie A, accounting for two complete seasons. Whether this run can continue with an ageing squad remains to be seen but it’s a fantastic sign of how far this club has come since the days of Lega Pro A.

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Unione Sportiva Cremonese | State Of The Youth: 2039

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With the winter break over and the youth intake fast approaching it’s time once again to take a look at the current crop of Cremonese youth prospects. There’s quite the range of players featured this time around as I’m looking to focus more on those that I have something to say about rather than the previous tactic of looking at players I believed deserved attention. The previous plan was well-intentioned but resulted in me having very little to say about some of the players listed and as a result, it became quite repetitive. I’m hoping that by looking more at the players I want to talk about, even if they may also feature at the end of season review, then the whole thing will feel far less stale.

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Unione Sportiva Cremonese | Summer 2038

The Season So Far

As is perhaps to be expected by now it has been a very strong start to the new season from Cremonese with an opening day win against Juventus very much setting the tone for what will hopefully be another successful Serie A campaign. It hasn’t all been smooth sailing, however, with the performances of James Nwokolo of particular concern. The Italian forward has been a stalwart of the Cremonese team for more than a decade now but his last three or four performances have been nothing short of abysmal and as a result, he’s found himself hooked in each of those games before full-time. It’s poor timing from Nwokolo considering I’m planning to debut a new ‘Player in Focus’ feature this season which aims to highlight one player in much more depth during the season. Currently, Rachid Saidi is the frontrunner for this new endeavour.

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2038 World Cup: Les Bleus

France visent à défendre la coupe du monde

I’ve been in charge of the French National Team for two years now, ever since leaving the Spain position following the 2036 European Championships. Which meant that, after a successful qualification campaign, it was time to take Les Blues to the 2038 World Cup in the United States this summer. Where we would be participating as defending Champions against the likes of Argentina, Brazil, England, Germany, and Spain. So no pressure there then.

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Crackers Don’t Matter

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I feel like my Cremonese save has stagnated somewhat in terms of how interesting the updates can possibly be. Don’t get me wrong, I’m still immensely enjoying the save personally but I’ve always felt that with FM writing it’s the struggle, the problems, and the potential overcoming of such things that makes them gripping. I worry that a constant parade of; hey I won this, this, and this just isn’t a satisfying read for most people. Which is why I’ve been trying to improve my update style a little to compensate. However, I’m so far in with Cremonese – a save I really do enjoy – and FM 17 is now just 10 weeks away so I feel like starting anything new would be rather unfulfilling given that I derive so much of my satisfaction from long-term, youth development based saves.

The only solution I’ve come up with to this predicament is to look forward towards what I plan to do with FM17 and to try and avoid this situation with that iteration of the game. To that end, I’m currently generating more challenging save ideas to take into FM17 and I plan to rotate between two or three saves to try and keep things interesting. It’s early days but so far I’m looking at a long-term purely academy based save idea where the aim will be to solely rely on a team’s youth academy for players, possibly with Auxerre. I would also like a talent production/finishing school save in a smaller league, such as Norway/Iceland, or even Argentina where selling players is a necessity as it has been too easy to hold onto players in the English, Italian, and German leagues over the past few FM’s. I may also take on a more quintessentially me like save looking to bring a team from the lower leagues to Champions League glory but in a smaller nation that I usually tend to. Perhaps some form of Journeyman save could work, though I do struggle with jumping from club to club.

Anyway apologies for the early morning ramble but if anyone has any feedback then I’d appreciate it.

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Unione Sportiva Cremonese | Season 2037/38: Soul Love

League Performance

This season saw something of a return to form in Serie A for Cremonese with a return to our more traditional imperious, dominating, performances. Culminating in our overall best defensive performance for nearly a decade in almost a throwback to the days of the mighty Kurt Zouma prowling the defensive line. Ultimately, we still drew far more games than I would ideally have liked but an undefeated season is an undefeated season and considering we conceded 55% fewer goals than last season it was a very pleasing display all round. It’s just a shame that the Under 18s suffered a downturn in their own fortunes but that’s more than likely my fault for weakening the squad too much over the last few years, and at any rate, the Under 20s still managed to maintain their domination so there were positives.

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Unione Sportiva Cremonese | State Of The Youth: 2038

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Over the twenty odd years that I’ve been in charge of Unione Sportiva Cremonese a tremendous number of players have worked their way through the ranks of the clubs youth development system. For the vast majority, this has been a positive and beneficial experience as they progressed into fine players, even if most were unable to join the special few who would go on to become legends at the club. This cycle of discovery > acquisition > development > end product, has benefited the club in a number of ways. The best of the best go on to become leading first team players while those a level or two below that generate income through player sales as they exit the Cremonese finishing school and move on to other clubs. All the while allowing the kind of success that has now seen the Under 20 and Under 18 squads win their respective league titles three years in a row.

Most importantly of all, however, is the fact that this keeps me interested in the save, the club, the players, and the game as these players progress from raw talent to the finished article. Which is why it’s so rewarding to be notified that the club are currently responsible for the development of fifty-six players competing in Serie A, a number which jumps to ninety once the Bundesliga, Ligue 1, Premier League, and La Liga, are taken into account.

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