Season 6 of Master League. I’ve just passed through the mid-season transfer window. One bit of business to report, and it’s a pretty big one.
I finally located a top-rated player who agreed terms. Again, as has already happened a few times in PES2016, he’s a bit older than I’d usually consider. But this is a PES where the oldies can still do the business — chiefly, I suspect, because this is a PES where stats and age mean less than they ever have before. They’re not completely meaningless, just less meaningful. Thus the older players are pretty much as good as the young ‘uns, until they start officially declining. So I have found, anyway.
Step forward the 32-year-old M GOTZE, the most famous World Cup-winner that nobody remembers. Seriously, stop a hundred random people in the street and ask them who scored the winning goal in the 2014 World Cup Final, and you’ll be lucky to get, what, 5/100 correct answers? Maybe even none. It’s a curiosity of our times that football is held as being some all-conquering entertainment juggernaut at the forefront of popular culture, but its actual status is somewhat more marginal. Video game football is better anyway, so it doesn’t bother me.
I sold ARCAS. That’s right — the man second only in my affections to Castledine. I parlayed a £15m offer up to £19m, and he was on his way. That was enough cash for Gotze’s transfer fee, a very reasonable £18m.
Gotze famously plays up front as an accomplished SS/CF, but his major role is as an AMF. So in letting Arcas go I’m trading like for like. At 89 OPR, Gotze might be my first 90+ rated player in PES2016, but he’ll start declining soon enough. Castledine, currently sitting on 88 OPR and still growing, is likely to be my first 90+ rated player.
Onto the on-field action. I’ve hit a rich vein of form. Here’s a typical run of results:
That 2-2 against West Ham was the kind of match we know all too well. Both their goals were straight from kickoffs. When the game decides you’ve won enough matches, there’s little you can do except get away with a draw if you can.
Here’s the table after 23 matches — exciting stuff:
The league title is definitely out of my reach, but Europe is a near-certainty in my current form. Champions League here I come? It’d mean getting a shot at the Treble next season, which would spell the end for PES2016 if it comes. We shall see.
One other dynamite bit of transfer business that happened just before the time of writing (Thursday morning). Long after the mid-season window had closed I had an offer for Cavani. I’ve turned down quite a few, Cavani’s one of my ‘names’ of PES2016 — one of the players who’ve defined this edition for me.
This was the offer:
He’s 34 and officially in decline. I took the money. £22.5m for a declining 34-year-old is something I cannot turn down. CANNOT turn down.
Cavani will leave my club at the end of the season. This was a tough decision but one I feel increasingly comfortable with. Luca Toni is just 20, already as good as Cavani at his peak, and only going to get better.
Cavani still has something (as this season’s highlights reel will show), but there are a few too many matches now where he fails to make any real impact. Just like a real-life ageing player.
The cash will pay much of my wage bill and free up some funds for squad-building. Another key player or two and I really fancy my chances of a Season 7 Treble.
But first I need to finish this season in the top 4.