A first for my Master League life and for the blog:
For the first time since the feature was introduced however-long-ago, I have accepted a job offer and moved clubs at the end of Season 11. I am now the manager of AS Saint Etienne in the French Ligue 1.
As a man who was twenty-something throughout the 1990s, when I hear the name ‘Saint Etienne’ I think of this rather than of a real place or a football club.
I’d have preferred to move to a no-name lower tier club somewhere, but the offers were all in keeping with my existing club’s stature and my manager-character’s notional achievements.
My newly adopted policy of playing PES2017 with Youths, Regens, and knackered old Veterans.will continue at Saint Etienne.
Before I left Coventry City I put R JARVIS on the transfer list. My first action at Saint Etienne was to buy him. I’ll probably be re-acquiring Friday and James Wilson before the transfer window is out. I need to scope out my new squad before deciding.
You can see me looking through the rest of the squad in the video. A satisfying mix of ageing clunkers and promising youngsters.
I only had time to play a single match with them – the French Supercup. (Saint Etienne are the reigning champions of Ligue 1.)
No names have sunk in yet, but Saint Etienne have a pleasing array of heavy, clumsy-feeling players whose turning circles are nothing like the ballet-like pirouettes of my Coventry super-squad.
When did Pro Evo become all about flowing fluidity and superstar tricks? There must have been an actual day when whoever was in charge of PES at the time said ‘Right, team. Enough of the gritty cult status. From this moment on, Pro Evo is going to be about flowing fluidity and superstar tricks. Get that responsiveness dial turned up to 11!’
There had to be an actual day when something like that really was stated and decided. Whenever that point was, somebody needs to get in a time machine, go back to that day, and embark on an amusing caper to put right what once went wrong.
In one other startling departure, I have taken an International job.
I am the new manager of New Zealand.
Regular readers of the blog at this time of year might wonder whether all of this will stick. I have a track record of embarking on various harebrained schemes and drifting away after a week or two.
Will I persevere with life at Saint Etienne and with New Zealand?
I think I will, as the aim is to play PES2017 with lesser players, which makes everything better. Also, this is actually the first time I have ever dabbled in these waters. So there is no actual precedent for what’ll happen next. I think it’s got a great chance of being my setup for the rest of the summer.