Hey all and welcome back to my FM20 blog where I’ll be attempting an updated version of my FM19 Achievement Hunter Challenge and an added extra challenge to go alongside it. If you haven’t already then go back and read the intro post which gives you all the info.
This post will be the first of two parts telling you a bit more about the club I’ll be starting the save with and that’s FK Haugesund in Norway. This part will talk about the club, the city, the expectations and vision and numerous other things to get you more acquainted with what lies ahead.
Welcome to Haugesund
Haugesund is a coastal town in the South-West of Norway. It has a population of just over 37,000 people and is the 23rd largest town in Norway. The town grew around it’s fishing industry, mainly herring but in recent years it’s turned more to the petroleum industry, like many Norwegian towns.
The towns waters are sheltered by the island of Karmøy and the Karmsundet strait located in between Haugesund and Karmøy is used by ships as it shelters them from the North Sea.
The “Haugesund Stadion” is in the middle of the town around 600 meters from the harbour (somewhere I’ll be visiting on a cruise in 18 months time) and has a capacity of just under 9,000. The council owned ground was built in 1920 and rebuilt in 2013. Prior to the running track being removed in 2012 the ground hosted the Norwegian Athletics Championships twice in 1965 and 1981.
The Club History
As you can see above the club has been pretty stable over the past 10 years, playing in the top division and ending a league high of 3rd in 2013. Their 4th place finish in 2018 qualified them for the Europa League for the 3rd time.
The club hasn’t won any top honours and have only one cup final to their name which came in 2007 where they lost to Lillestrom.
One thing to look at as it is a part of my Achievement Hunter challenge is the records.
The following ones I need to look at are:
- Record League Appearance Holder – 326
- Record League Goals – 59
- Record Attendance – 10,000
- Record Win – 9-1
- Record Sale – £1,014,000
- Record Purchase – £101,000
As I’m looking to stay here for 10 seasons I’m pretty confident I can achieve all those records, the one currently impossible is the record attendance as our max capacity is lower than 10k! A new, bigger ground is needed!
I’ll leave the screenshot out here but below are the key facilities I look for and am looking to improve over my tenure at the club.
- Training – Average
- Youth – Below Average
- Junior Coaching – Average
- Youth Recruitment – Adequate
For a relatively small club we have a decent transfer budget to work with, I will be looking at my squad in the second part of this intro to the club and I will then talk about signings, sales, etc.
The one issue is there is hardly any wage budget to play with so I will more than likely move over some of the transfer budget to give me the wages to bring in one or two players.
The finances on the face of it look OK, we have a bank balance of £3.3m but are expected to lose nearly all of that by the end of the first season. A European run and/or a couple of player sales will be needed to balance the books. The projections show by the end of season three we will be -£3m.
Now let’s take a look at the League structure and rules.
The Tippeligaen is the top tier in Norway and consists of 16 teams, each team play each other twice meaning a season of 30 games.
The one thing that catches my eye on the above screenshot is the prize money. Some decent amounts there and that will definitely help with our bank balance.
The league squad registration rules were the one thing I was concerned about. Miles tweeted one of his features out a while back which eluded there were some strange rule changes in Norway with regard to A team and B team registration. Looking below it doesn’t say anything about that but does state you can only have a Max of 25 players on part-time contracts or better and then a Max of 5 players on youth or amateur contracts.
The other biggie for me is we have to have at least 16 players in the squad who have trained in Norway for 3 years before they turned 21 and 2 players who have trained at the club.
Now to the season preview and I have to say I’m surprised how low down we are expected to finish. Seeing as we finished 4th last season I expected us to be a lot higher than 13th. Is a relegation battle coming? I bloody hope not!
Now just a quick look at the Norwegian Cup, the only domestic cup competition we have to deal with and it’s pretty self explanatory, 2 prelim rounds and then we have the 1st round proper which is where we enter the tournament. To get to the final we need to negotiate 6 games. The prize money is also pretty decent. If we get to the final we get £650k whether we win or lose. There are no squad or player restrictions or rules as well which is great.
The Club Vision
One of the new features in FM20 is the Club Vision, this comes up after you have started the game and taken over a club. Below is what the board expect of me:
This to me looks decent, the expectations aren’t going to be massively hard to achieve. Each “demand” has a rating between “Favoured” and “Required”.
So the “Required” demands which I have to adhere to are:
- Work with the wage budget
- End Mid-table at the end of the current season
- 3rd Qualifying Round of the Europa League, also current season
As the league runs a different schedule to the main bulk of European nations our League starts in March and finishes in December, the European competitions don’t start until July/August so Europe will be pretty much mid-season for us.
The other board requests I am going to need to look at are:
- Reach the Quarter Final of the Cup
- Not to sign players over 30.
I much prefer to sign youth players so I’m happy with that one.
As for the 5-year plan it looks really easy. Mid-table this year and the Top-Half at a minimum for the other 4 years. I fully expect that by the end of Season 5 we will have won the League!
So that’s it for this part, like I said earlier there will be a “Part Two” where I will look at the squad I have at my disposal, the plan for my tactics and then my own personal plan as to what I want to achieve over my time at Haugesund.
Thanks for reading. Please feel free to drop me a comment either on here or on Twitter.