The FM Side Of Things
After "Big Changes"
As we finished up our transfer business, and after the great start to our Premier League campaign, we had a rough two games as we drew with Liverpool and lost to Chelsea. Both games were less than artful on our part, and the fact that Pontus Jansson scored in both games should be a clue that our attackers haven't really kicked off. Our performance in those two games was worrying, as the next game we had was our first Champions League group game against Atletico Madrid. We performed well, and the game played out to a draw. Then we absolutely thrashed Southampton at Elland Road, with Arkadiusz Milik really breaking our and scoring a hat trick. Then we had a goal bonanza that ended in defeat as we faced off against Tottenham in the 3rd round of the EFL Cup. Harry Kane scored 4 goals as Tottenham managed to rally back and win the game in the last minutes of regulation. While disappointing, it will be a huge help that we have one less competition to worry about in our quest for European glory. We then struggled to yet another draw against Manchester United in the Roses Derby. Our victory against Sparta Praha in our 2nd Champions League group game marked the start of a good run of form. We beat Middlebrough rather soundly, and then we left it late in the game against Swansea but came away with the win nonetheless. Hopefully this puts us in a good position for our group game against Monaco in the Champions League.
Champions League Game 3 - 10/23/19
Monaco were always going to be a strong opponent, and the boys needed to put their best feet forwards in order to come away with the win. Arkadiusz Milik heads our attack, followed by Emad Hassam, Oliver, and Federico Bernardeschi. Alberto Grassi and Kristoffer Ajer make up our midfield duo. In defense, we have Ryan Sessegnon, Antonio Rudiger, Jamaal Lascelles, and Mitchell Weiser. Timo Horn has returned from injury to be our man between the posts.
We maintained the edge on possession in this game, and we had roughly the same amount of shots as them. Though all the game, they had a couple of moments where they looked very threatening, but our defense did its job and prevented the end result. Nearly every move of ours seemed like it would end a goal as our players let their creativity run rampant.
League Game 10 - 10/26/19
Everton are a team that find themselves just outside the European places in the Prem and are performing rather well. We will have to be wary of them. For this game we will field the same starting 11 as played in the Monaco game.
We largely dominated this game, both in possession and in the fact that we made more than double the shots that Everton had. Kristoffer Ajer got us off the mark with his early goal, but Everton equalized 14 minutes later. It took us until just over 10 minutes into the second half to score again despite our domination.
League Game 11 - 11/2/19
If there is a team that I have felt no need to respect since I took charge of Leeds, it is the upstart champions of the 15/16 Premier League, Leicester City. They have not proven to be any real threat against us even since we played them in the FA Cup whilst still in the Championship. We have been forced to make one change, due to Emad Hassam being out on injury. Ryan Sessegnon pushes up to the left wing, and Matty Downing fills in at left-back. Both Memphis Depay and Emad Hassam being out on injury leaves us very thin in their position, though Federico Bernardeschi is also technically capable there.
While we did maintain majority of possession, neither of the two teams really had very many shots on target, or all total for that matter. They took the lead in the first half after a fluke chance, and we didn't respond until the second half. Kristoffer Ajer scored in the 53rd minute, and Jamaal Lascelles got a collector's item of a goal in the 69th minute. Ryan Sessegnon made a mistake in his marking of Jamie Vardy in the last seconds of the game, which allowed the pacy striker to equalize.
Looking forward, we still have 3 games to play in our Champions League group, though at this pace I am confident that we can finish top of our group as we are currently edging first over Atletico Madrid on goal differential. Finishing first would allow us to forgo playing any other top European side that won their group, and should give us a chance of pressing on past the first knockout round. In the league, we are in a tight struggle with Tottenham for 1st, with either of us alternating as we both run into random draws against teams we have no need to draw against. Next episode will find us playing our final group game against Sparta Praha, as well as our 16th and 17th league games.
FM fanatic and football pundit