Having secured promotion last season we would fight Season Two out in the Segunda Division – Spain’s second tier. I had this season in mind as a sort of cash builder. We’d clear out the deadwood among the Senior, B and Youth team and pocket some of that cash for Season Three while maintaining a steady mid table finish in the second tier. What I didn’t envisage was a near total on-pitch collapse in the second half of the season which would see us drawn into a relegation scrap.
Revisiting the initial ‘Three Year Plan’
Season One: Fill out the senior backroom staff, have confidence in the first team squad – completed
Season Two: Fill out the youth backroom staff, begin to assess youth intake – completed
Season Three: Make plans for upgrades to our facilities
With the aforementioned, and later to be explained, on-pitch struggles I will revise the above and postpone facility upgrades in favour for ploughing any available cash into first team ready signings. The B team is still not a thought that is entering my mind.
On The Pitch
Footballing updates will be brief as I’m concentrating more on developing the club with a more holistic approach.
We made a solid, if not spectacular, start to the season which was to see us sitting a healthy 11th at the winter break. We were as close to a play-off place as we were to relegation and I felt that at this point with the right run of form we would make a push into the top half.
Sadly, things didn’t quite click in the second half of the season and disaster struck. A combination of a leaky tactic becoming unstuck and a few nasty injuries at the most inconvenient times led us to a run of 10 games without a win which was nothing short of a disaster. A late season rally following some tactical changes and much pleading with the squad managed to steer us narrowly clear of relegation
The Spanish Cup isn’t something that particularly interests me at this time, still… it would have been nice to go further than the 3rd Round.
Recruitment and Player Development
With a still minimal transfer budget of £28,124, we were reliant on our free loanees who remained with us: Borja Mayoral, Caio, Jose Arnaiz and David Concha. We moved to bring in Anthony Lozano on loan (Barcelona) and Roberto Olabe (Atletico Madrid), once again both were at no cost to ourselves. Robert Huth, Javi Lopez and Munir were signed as free agents. Daniel Braganca (Sporting Lisbon) was a further loan signing in January for £450/week and £5k/month further fees.
On the way out, we said goodbye to Lago Junior who was sold to First Division side Leganes for £1.5m upfront with a further £250k in 4 installments, there were also performance based add ons and a 35% of next sale clause. Abdon Prats was loaned to Cordoba for 100% of his £2.5k wages and Cedric Omoigui joined Mirandes on loan for 100% of his £1.1k wages. New signing Munir just didn’t cut it with us and after being dropped, demanded a move – he was loaned to Oviedo for 100% of his £3.3k wages and a £19k/month fee.
The Youth Intake was fairly poor and I decided to only retain two players from that intake. Pep Oliver (birth city – Palma de Mallorca, Mallorca) and Josep Alzina (Marratxi, Mallorca) signed youth contracts with provisional professional terms.
Following the conclusion of his contract, Damia Sabater opted to leave the club. Caio (Atletico Madrid) could not be persuaded to extend his loan and returns to his club while Anthony Lozano (Barcelona) leaves at the end of his loan having signed a pre-contract agreement with Las Palmas.
Financial Outlook and Club Development Progress
We wanted this season to be a cash builder, as I said, and with a massively increased income of £17,528,761 it was exactly that. This is some disparity in what FM shows as our total season income but I can’t work out where the difference is…
We had a slightly increased expenditure but this is to be expected, we managed to turn a decent profit all in all.
- State Loan (£15.25m), £800k remaining – £135k per month until 01/01/2020
Training Facilities: 3 Stars – Good
Youth Facilities: 2.5 stars – Average
Youth Recruitment: Above Average
Junior Coaching: Adequate
Corporate Facilities: Average
Reputation: 3 Stars – National
Finances: 4 Stars – Secure – Account Balance: £3,752,703
Estimated Value: £13.7m
End of Season Stats
Most apperances: Robert Huth (DC) – 41 appearances
Top Goalscorer: Anthony Lozano (STC) – 17 goals (16 League, 1 Spanish Cup)
Most Assists: Anthony Lozano (STC) – 7 assists (5 League, 2 Spanish Cup)
Clean Sheets: Manolo Reina (GK) – 7 clean sheets (7 League)
Highest Average Rating: Caio (M/AMC) – 7.10 average rating