Season 9 has ended. I finished in 5th place, with an embarrassingly low goals-scored tally: 59. I won nothing at all.
There were some consolations. An excellent defensive record kept my goal difference on the respectable side. And I remained unbeaten for the entire season—prompting a special mention from the commentator team after the final game: “Can any team beat them?”
Well, yes: Barcelona, Malaga, and Manchester City all beat me this season in the Champions League, the Europa League, and the FA Cup respectively.
In the space of a single session the other morning I was eliminated from the FA Cup and the Europa League. I also saw my chances of a top 4 finish pretty much dashed by a sequence of yet more ruinous draws.
If just 7 of my 17 draws had been victories instead, I could have won the title. Oh, the pain of ‘what might have been’…
I will win the title in PES2012 on Professional difficulty. I will win the FA Cup in PES2012 on Professional difficulty. I will win the Champions League in PES2012 on Professional difficulty.
Right now I’d settle for just one of them, in separate seasons, it doesn’t matter.
I’d love a Double. I’d go nuts over a Treble—that’s the ultimate goal, of course. But I’m not so foolish that I’m going to stake everything on the Treble.
One step at a time. I need to get close to winning anything at all before I can start dreaming about Doubles and Trebles.
At least by finishing 5th I should have qualified yet again for a pre-Champions League qualifying match. I’ve already played to the start of season 10 to verify that this is still the case, and it is.
I’ll play the first leg away to Vitesse a few days before my first league match of the new season. The PES2012 Champs League qualification glitch, if that’s what it is, is still doing me proud. I have to qualify for the full tournament. Failure isn’t an option.
Season 9 ended with a new star rising: my promoted Youth player, Diego Forlan.
He’s 20 now and developing very, very nicely indeed. I started playing him in various positions and roles up front: as part of a front two, as part of a front three, and once on his own. None were very satisfactory.
Now I’ve started playing him in the hole behind the main strikers, as an AMF, which takes his rating down to 79 or so (he’s 83 as an SS, 81 as a CF).
AMF seems to be his best position for me, for the way I play. I always feel that I can make things happen and create/score goals with Forlan sitting in that spot.
Here’s a typical Forlan goal from the AMF slot—you’ve got to love the placement:
I’ve got a few other young players that are worth getting excited about too. Among them are a couple of promoted CBs whom I think will replace Ruggeri and Nadal as my main defenders within a few seasons. I’ve got a few general new players that I haven’t mentioned at all yet for space reasons. Among them one Enzo Scifo. I’ll cover it all on Friday.
Here’s the Best XI and other stats from season 9:
I was disappointed not to see van Basten there, but he didn’t score at all in the last 5 matches, and was pipped at the post for top scorer by Aguero, so fair enough.
Here’s the concise tale of the tape. I was gratified to see my club ranking shoot up 41 places to 34th in the ML World, after my good showing in domestic Cup and League:
And that was season 9. All in all, one of the most extraordinary PES experiences I have ever had.
Roll on season 10.