When people realise that I am playing in Brazil the first thing they say is something along the lines of ‘It’s easy though’ or ‘it’s such a weak league’. So many people have this perception of Brazil being super easy when in fact it’s not and if people had any kind of knowledge about it they’d realise that. Some of the teams in the State Championships can be weak but it depends which State you end up in. In the São Paulo State Championships there is also a lot of big clubs in it and some very good sides like Corinthians. Palmeiras, São Paulo, Santos and so on. Beating the weaker sides doesn’t mean it’s easy because you still have to beat the big guns and that can be difficult at times. I think it’s the whole idea of the States why people perceive Brazil to be an easy nation to play it but it’s not. After the States have finished you then have to play the proper league games and the Campeonato Brasileiro Série A is quite a competitive league with about 8 different teams all capable of winning the league.
Playing in Brazil is not easier and the leagues are as competitive as any top European League.
With this said, it’s time I start thinking about what I want to do for Football Manager 16. I’ve struggled to get into a save on the past two versions of Football Manager. On FM13 I had a save with Santos and Paysandu in Brazil and I’ve struggled to get into anything else since because for me, those were the two best saves I’ve ever had on Football Manager. When FM14 was released I just couldn’t take to playing long-term and shifted about a lot searching for that one club that would captivate me again. Sadly it never happened and I spent the majority of that year writing about youth development after stopping at Ajax for a few seasons. I definitely wrote about the game a lot more than I played it.
Then we move onto FM15 and the same thing happened again, I just struggled to get into any kind of save to begin with. Even managing the mighty Sheffield United couldn’t get me invested into a save for anything longer than three seasons at the most. It doesn’t matter what team I play as, whether it be a professional club or semi pro I just fail to keep interest. I felt like I wanted to play the game but just can’t find the save I connected to. Until June that was when I loaded up Brazil again and started messing around on my Santos save that I had. Over the years on every single version of the game, I’ve had a save in Brazil. It’s become the only place I feel comfortable and can enjoy playing the game. Maybe it’s because I’m a massive Brazilian football fan in general and watch it more than I watch the English leagues (Sheffield United aside ofc). But none the less, while I was messing around on the Santos save I had started earlier in the year I began to start playing it more and more until I finally realised I was hooked again.
I’ve been a massive Santos fan since I can remember, when I was younger my nan of all people told me about them and spoke fondly of their players. So I decided to research them and keep an eye out for their results, it also helped that Pele for me was one of the greats. The more I began reading about them and watching them the more I wanted to learn. I don’t claim to be a super fan or anything but I do class myself as a proper fan of them. So what’s all this got to do with Football Manager 16 I hear you ask? Well for this version of the game I will just cut all the messing that I’ve done on the previous two versions out and just start at the club I enjoy, in the nation that I know I can stay years in without getting bored.
This means that I will be hoping to stay at one club and play over fifty seasons as Santos for the duration of FM16. This might seem a bit boring to most but for me there are lots of goals and personal challenges I can set myself. You see, Santos have a really small stadium and following in Brazil, it’s only a 17k capacity stadium. Long term in Football Manager means I can try to get a new stadium built. Along with this I will be trying to raise the reputation of the league and make it the best league in the world, this challenge alone will take quite a few years to achieve. I will also be managing the under 20’s and the reserves. I want to have full control over everything and use the academy set up as a proper academy and develop every single player the best I can. This will also include me getting to know every single player at the club and watching them in action every single game they play, whether it be a friendly or competitive and irrespectable of what age group.
I’ll be hoping I can create a particular style of play and try to replicate a particular era. Os Santásticos is the nickname for the group of Santos FC players coached by Lula and Antoninho that won a total of 25 titles between 1959 to 1974,including two Copa Libertadores. Often considered one of the strongest teams ever assembled in any sport,scoring over 3000 goals during this period, with an average of over 2.5 goals per match. Also known as O Balé Branco (The White Ballet) or Time dos Sonhos(Dream Team), they dominated Brazilian football and became a symbol of Joga Bonito thanks to figures such as Gilmar, Mauro, Mengalvio, Coutinho, Pepe and the iconic Pele. Pele made Santos FC famous around the world in this revolutionary era, therefore his lesser-known teammates are best known as “Pele’s friends.”
I really want to build a squad that is full or flamboyance and flair so I can play in such a manner that is easy on the eye, entertaining and more importantly, is successful. It will be a challenge but one that makes the game fun for me.
So those are my Football Manager 16 plans 🙂