Category: Mathieu

What’s the Mathieu, gotta no respect

Captain Castledine turns up the derby heatHere we go with Season 6 of Master League in PES2016. I kicked off with a bruising encounter against Leicester, my local rivals in this ML world. A crazily fast 3-3 draw was the outcome. It sounds thrilling — but it wasn’t, really. I found it rather tedious. There are too many 3-3-like scorelines in this game.

I’ve felt from the beginning that the Class of ’16 would not be a long-lasting one. This PES is much too fast and fluid and attack-oriented, and we all know why that is. The online marketplace is in the process of destroying football gaming as we knew it.

But at least Master League has lasted this long. I think it’ll last a few seasons yet. I’m at least two seasons from being eligible to go for a Treble, so there’ll definitely be at least be a Season 7 in due course, and probably a Season 8 too.

But yes, Season 6. Let’s get this thing done. In my pre-season wheeler-dealering, I decided to indulge myself. So I searched for, and found, a particular Regen: step forward, Mathieu. One of the few players with his own category on this blog.

PES2016 a PES legend arrives

PES2016 Mathieu looking good

PES5 players will have just genuflected and crossed themselves and bowed their heads in respect for the best DMF in the greatest football game ever made.

There’s an ancient saying: ‘No man goes down to the same river twice’. It’s a straightforwardly true saying.

PES2016’s Mathieu isn’t going to be like PES5’s legendary version. Firstly, he’s just a 16-year-old Regen. Secondly, and most importantly, in PES2016 he doesn’t play at DMF.

This is shocking. Of course I popped into Edit Mode and gave him DMF as an alternate position. I knew it wouldn’t carry over into my ML world, and it didn’t, but I had to try.

Still, it makes me happy just to see that name on the screen and I’ll relish coaxing his development for however long PES2016 lasts.

Anyway, my other wheeler-dealering (that’s my favourite compound phrase!) resulted in this squad to take me through at least the first half of Season 6:

PES2016 Season 6 start squad and XII now have players rated in the 80s in every position. I tried for a few 90+ players before the window closed, but they are too few and all out of my price range anyway.

I had another tempting offer for Cavani that I wasn’t tempted by. I also had one for another player that I was tempted by: Arcas. Somebody offered £15,000,000.

Arcas is 27 now and somewhat past his best. Still useful, but no Castledine. I was so tempted. But who would I get that’s better? Not many, and they’d dilute my Team Spirit anyway. Still, I lingered over the offer for a while before turning it down (or ignoring it, which amounts to the same thing).

Toni steps up to being first-choice, despite being only 20, and will start as many games as possible next to Cavani. Let’s see how the goals flow from these two as the season progresses.

After Leicester, my next game of the season was a daylit match against Chelsea. They’ve been unbeatable for so many seasons, but I cantered to a resounding 3-0 win.

PES2016 season 6 thumping ChelseaThe great result seen above was followed by a few middling results.

PES2016 season 6 a draw to followAnd yes, that is another daytime match on show there. I think I’ve already had as many sunny matches in Season 6 as I had in the whole of Season 5.

I had a few days off work at the tail-end of last week and played some mammoth sessions. I like to listen to audiobooks and podcasts when playing PES. It’s the perfect accompaniment. I had a great few days, just chillin’ in muh yard, playin’ muh Pro Evo.

I played all the way to Matchday 15. The current table:

PES2016 season 6 after 15I’ll do very well to barge into title contention from here, I think, but my main goal — Champions League qualification — is within reach. I’ve drawn a few too many games already. I need to start winning those ties instead.

I’m saving up the goals and other interesting incidents for a bumper end-of-season highlights reel, set to some appropriate music. If I score any super-duper jaw-dropping goals between now and then, I’ll be sure to post them here on their own.

Welcome, Mattie and Ronnie

I’m not changing my kits for season 16. I loaded up the relevant Edit menu, but couldn’t decide which way to go. I backed out in the end and decided to stick with what I’ve got—plain sky blue for the home kit, and maroon-and-yellow halved shirts for the away kit.

My squad for the coming season is a very healthy one. Maybe I lack one or two more dedicated AMFs, but overall I’m happy with it. I decided to get rid of one of my young strikers, Chilnat. I first acquired him as a Youth player. He had a starting role for most of last season but never really deserved it. He was always decidedly average, permanently in the mid-70s OVR, which was reflected in the eventual price he fetched on the market: £600k. Better than nothing.

Money’s still a bit tight, and so for the first time I have brought in some loan players. Ronaldinho is a 20-year-old Regen, and goes straight into my starting lineup. The loan deal cost just £2m. And I also brought in an 18-year-old Chevanton as cover for my main strikeforce—that loan deal only cost me £1.5m. My notorious lack of attention to certain wider details means that, as I sit here typing this, I realise I have no idea what clubs I’ve loaned them from. Isn’t that shocking?

In ‘proper’ transfer news, I made a bid for the 20-year-old Regen Pirlo that was accepted. However the transfer fee would have been £28m, about £10m more than I could comfortably afford. I tried to renegotiate but the deal was abruptly cancelled. At least I know now that Pirlo will potentially come to my club. Winning two Cups last season is already paying dividends.

At the  risk of possibly overloading myself with DMFs, I couldn’t resist finally buying the Regen Mathieu. He looks a lot different in PES2010, or is it me? Younger and leaner. And I didn’t really have to worry about getting too many DMFs. In a real shocker, DMF is no longer one of Mathieu’s positions. I might train him up in that role myself. Or I might not.

For some reason my Youth squad keeps generating brilliant left-backs. Capuano,of course, for one. My new Youth signing Ignjatijevic is another handy-looking SB. The born-again Ceciu is coming along as a very decent CB too.

I still had £12m left, but kept it back as a cushion. I hated having to scrape through last season financially. I prefer the feeling that I can pick up a player or two mid-season if I have to, and not worry about it.

The start of the league campaign has been brilliant. Ronaldinho scored a neat headed goal on his debut in my first attack in my first game. Zaki is firing them in at the rate of nearly a goal a game. I can’t believe I considered selling him a few seasons ago. He’s almost become one of my all-time PES great strikers. He’s not (yet) up there with the very first rank of my former ML legends—i.e., the likes of Vieri, Stoichkov, Bergkamp, plus a few others—but if he continues to put away the goals as he moves through his early 30s, he could be. If I do win the Treble this season, Zaki will play a big part I’m sure.

I’m second in the league table after 9 league matches, just behind Arsenal on goal difference. But for a frustrating trio of goalless games, I’d be top. I got through the first round of the D1 cup, beating Boca Juniors home and away. In Europe my Champs League group consists of Nancy St Lorraine, Besiktas, and FC Kholugavinsk. I have played the first fixture against Nancy and won 2-0. FC Kholugavinsk beat me 2-0 in the second tie. It was another game where I felt I was being artificially prevented from scoring. Still work to do in Europe, then.

All in all, things are set for another season of going for the Treble, and this year it feels very much ON. I’ve got the squad. I’ve got the experience. And most importantly of all, I’ve got a pretty good start.

Camera panning’s people

So, I’m in the pre-season negotiations period before my second season. Master League through the years has always treated this phase as the end of the previous season. Meaning that if you’ve just won promotion from Division 2 (still a way off for me right now) some players won’t come to your club, as they’ll ‘think’ you’re still a Division 2 club.

That amusingly stupid feature of Master League is a close cousin to the one where you’ll lose the first leg of a Cup match 0-2, say—but then score first in the second leg. Making it 1-0 to you on the day, and 1-2 to the CPU on aggregate. But the CPU doesn’t know it’s still winning and reacts just as if it is, in fact, losing 1-0, most often going into full-on God Mode. When it shouldn’t do. Because it’s still winning. And then there’s the way you can’t have a player on the transfer list and offer him in a trade-in deal at the same time…

Oh, I could go on. We could probably all go on. Will those and all the other niggles be fixed in PES2010?

PES2010 is currently doing the dance of the seven veils, with rumours about rumours about Big News. After all of this it had just better be worth it. It had just better be.

Home Stadium Nets Problem

In PES6 on the Xbox360, there’s quite a lot missing. You can’t edit your home stadium, for one thing, which is unfortunate because of an annoying visual problem with the goal at the left side of my pitch. The running track is partly painted white, which makes the roof and far side of the net look wonky. Whenever a goal is scored in this net, I often can’t tell if the ball has gone in for a second or two.

I could turn off the full camera panning that gives me that viewing angle, but I won’t. I revel in camera panning. After a couple of years of putting up with next-gen PES’s totally alien up-and-down-the-touchline camera, camera panning really is like going home again. Why has it been missing from the next-gen so far? Come on, PES2010. I know you can do it…

Onto the transfer action, and for once I was in no danger at all of a GAME OVER. Not even close. Back in mid-season I sold Lothar, one of the Default GKs, for 4200 points. In the first weeks of this pre-season negotiation period I sold another couple of Defaulters for a combined total of 10,000 points. I’ve never known anything like it in ML, ever. Putting players on the transfer market and actually getting offers from CPU teams—crazy stuff.

The highlight of the craziness was getting a trade-in offer for Stremer from North London White. They offered me Huddlestone plus 1000 points on top. I don’t know what the hell that was all about either. But I took it. I’m on a schedule here. 7 weeks to FIFA10, 9 weeks to PES2010. Assuming that at least one of the games will be worth getting, this ML career has got to be done and dusted by then.

And thus it came to pass that I was able to repopulate my entire First XI with non-Default players. That’s a first for me at the end of season 1. I’m very hopeful for the season ahead now. In the last several PESes I’ve had to grind through a few seasons before getting close to this point.

And yes, I even got Mathieu too.

(First XI on the top; reserves on the bottom.)

ML squad 1ML squad 2


My YLOD-afflicted PS3 arrived back yesterday afternoon from its short trip to Console Doctor. I’ve only had time for a brief test, but it seems remarkably good as new. There’s barely a murmur from its fans. I had a quick game of PES5, then a quick game of FIFA08. All OK. I am really happy to have my 60GB PS3 back in working order, but I remain tense whenever the fans do kick in, as they inevitably must from time to time. Over the weekend I should have time for a more extensive reacquaintance. I’ll post a thumbnail review of this whole repair experience on Monday.

A win, a very palpable win

I claimed my first win of season 2012 against a team called Heracles Almero. I’m playing in the PES2008 equivalent of La Liga, so I thought I’d have heard of most or all of the teams—but I’d never heard of Heracles Almero.

A quick Google of the name indicates that I’ve never heard of them because they’re really a quite obscure Dutch team. Their real name also seems to be Heracles Almelo. Hmmm all round, really.

The game looked like it was going to be yet another 0-0. After four of the blighters on the bounce I wasn’t too happy. When would I score another goal? When? There is something almost tragic about a 0-0 in football. Nil-nil just isn’t the point of what any game should be about, if that makes sense. I think the Americans had the right idea in the 1970s when they effectively banned 0-0 results from their ill-fated ‘soccer’ league at the time.

Bradley was sitting out this game on the bench due to tiredness. I brought him on in the 79th minute. I had a throw-in deep in my own half, and worked the ball across the pitch to him. I ran him a little way forward, crossed the halfway line, shot speculatively… and the ball flew into the net through the CPU keeper.

Not literally through the keeper: on closer inspection the ball passed between his outstretched hands. He should have still saved it, but I was happy enough. Bradley’s sheer power had scored the winning goal. It was his first goal for my Coventry City with his first touch of the game. I’ve had plenty of players in PES with the Middle Shooting ability, but Bradley seems to have the most exquisite long-range power and placement of them all.

This boy is going to be something special. He already is something special. He’s only 21 years old. What will he be like in five seasons? The mind boggles. I might not even bother with Mathieu in this career—and that’s saying something for me. Bradley is Mathieu turned up to 11.

In the long-term, could Bradley become a ‘cheat player’ for me—almost an Elcherino?

I’ll have to watch this situation carefully, but it’s not an issue at the moment and I don’t think it will be. I have always been average at ‘proper’ PES, as this PSP/PS2 version is; I have always managed to play it for the whole PES year without boredom.