Season 14. Played 9 league matches. Won 5, drawn 2, lost 2. Goals for: 11. Goals against: 7. It’s just not good enough, but somehow I’m still in touch:
Not a great start to the season, but I’m still only 7 points off the leaders, and there’s a long way to go. Can’t afford to lose many more matches, though.
I also have a new Away kit, as modelled here by Ruggeri, my captain fantastic at centre-back. I’ve had (and will have) many memorable players in this Master League. Ruggeri is right up there near the top of that list.
Superstar is a great level to play PES2012 at, in my experience.
Get your gameplan wrong, commit a noob error, go 1-0 down, and you’re in serious trouble.
But get it right, and play with discipline and skill and the right tactical approach, and it can be the most rewarding football gameplay ever. PES2012 on Superstar with a mature team is better than PES5. In my opinion.
But I need to start scoring some goals again on Superstar, and fast. If I don’t, I’ll fall out of the running for the League title. I don’t want to end up in a situation where I’m permanently excluded from the top tier on Superstar. I’d (reluctantly) drop down a difficulty level to Top Player before letting that happen.
But I don’t think things will come to that. I think this is more a case of adjusting to life under a new squad management ethos.
I’ve decided to restrict my big-money buys to one or two per season (if that). Instead I’m cultivating Youth players promoted from within, or young Regens brought in from elsewhere.
Caracciolo is such a player. Promoted from my Youths several seasons ago, he’s only now getting an extended run-out in the team, playing up front alongside Forlan (another former Youth player).
Here’s a goal Caracciolo scored for me in the Europa League—I loved his leggy take-down of the ball, and then of course the finish:
(Pardon the blurry quality. It’s the time of year. The recent blazing sunshine has been shining directly into the room. If I hadn’t already used Spending warm summer days indoors as a post title, I would have used it for this post.)
That goal was against a team called Pacos de Ferreira, whose teamsheet featured a thirty-something player called … SHIMIZU. Ah, so this is where he’s ended up, all these years after I sold him way back in the day. He was no trouble at all, and still weaker than an especially weak kitten.
(Yes, it was a deliberately misleading post title today.)
After three matches in the European Masters Cup, aka the Europa League, I’m topping the group table:
I’m also still in the FA Cup. I met Everton in the first round. It was 0-0 pretty much all the way, a tight, ugly game with few clear-cut chances to either side. I won it in the last 5 minutes with a sucker-punch rebound goal scored by that man of the moment, Caracciolo. He seems always to be just there whenever a loose ball squirts across the box. Great stuff.
I don’t think my youngest young players are going to be much help for another season or two (or three).
I’m talking about Hagi and Kaka and Ribery. Even Schweinsteiger. Maybe Schweinsteiger could play when nobody else is avaiable. But those first three are all pretty weak and unformed. They need solid experience and growth before there’s any point playing them. I’d love to send them all out on loan, but there have been no takers. I’ll keep trying.