Building Brazil – Part 15: O fim da linha

It’s the final ever update from Rob’s Brazil series. Over the past 15 weeks, Rob has shown you how difficult it is to build an all Brazilian team but also how good it can be. Can he finish with a flourish? Catch up with part 14 here.

So we have reached the final part of the Samba story, what started as an idealistic adventure in Madeira will end as a three part Blue Peter special starring “The Real” Ronaldo and an excellent regen of Aldair attempting to win the Champions League after missing out in the final a year earlier. Part two ended with Sporting Brazilians (we are a well groomed side) six points clear in the league with twelve left to play and the Taca and Champions league trophies there for the taking. Without further waffle here we go.

Ronny and Co. continue their fantastic league form with a clinical home victory against Leiria.

1

It was exactly what we needed before hosting the always tough Manchester United in the Champ league quarters. United are playing Stefan Klos in goal who gets MOM but it is not enough to deny us a 2-0 victory. I feel like we have one foot in the semis but we would be silly to underestimate them.

2

As if to prove to ourselves how it could all go wrong we are terribly inaccurate away to Leca and despite out clear dominance of the match we drop two points. Denilson with an 83rd minute equaliser spares a few blushes and that annoying message from the board.

3

Only two days later we are away to Porto in the Taca semi final (they don’t do neutral grounds apparently). In a very even tie Hilario is the difference maker with his MOM performance as we lose 2-1. Annoyingly I sold CM Ledg. Nevland to Porto when I started the whole Brazilian team idea. Would have been nice to get the treble but it was not to be.

4

Five days later and guess what we play Porto again, this time in the league. We are worse than in the Taca, Hilario gets another MOM, Leandro scores again but Mercado misses his 81st minute penalty and we sneak a win, hopefully a momentum changer.

5

The games are coming thick and fast at the moment and we are in Manchester three days later for the second leg. In this gaming world Ferguson managed to secure the services of one Alan Shearer who has currently scored 35 goals in 43 games this season, not bad for 31 year old Big Al. It’s a very even match, we are much better that our previous games hitting the target seven times. Utd are on song too though and they have eight shots on target. Utd win on the night but it is not enough to overturn our lead and it feels like we managed to sneak through 4:3 on aggregate.

6

Our reward is another trip to England and what on paper sounds like an easy tie, however Leicester beat Juve in the last round so they clearly have a little but about them.

7

To make matters worse I get the following information sent through on the pager.

8

9

What the hell lads!

We finally resume some normal service against local rivals Benfica. Not even Scotty Minto’s 68th minute goal can upset us as we run home easy winners.

10

The international breaks see me finally achieve a mini milestone as Sporting Lisbon officially become Sporting Brazil, that’s all eleven players of mine starting. Although if he was using my formation I’m pretty sure we would beat Slovenia by more than one goal.

11

A few days later the lads are back in Lisbon facing Braga. We are cut throat in front of goal and after a seventh minute scare we brush them aside with ease.

12

Semi final time at Filbert Street and Kasey Keller is no match for Fat Ron. What were Juve playing at? Leicester only had one shot on target!

13

A bizarre league affair in Chaves sees us go three goals up in 12 minutes only to concede three in the next 33 minutes against ten men to run in at half time 3-3. Fortunately the L’s were on hand to grab a couple in the second half as we win the eight goal thriller.

14

Finally a week off to rest before we face Boavista and it does us the world of good. Dida has been a bit up and down this year but he is keeps a clean sheet as we run out easy winners in what seemed an even game. Djalminha has been a really good signing and him and Denny have been on fire, so much so that Juninho can’t get into the team.

15

I hadn’t checked the table for a while so I was a little surprised when I found this. Vitty G have had a nightmare with four points from seven games and suddenly we are 17 clear with five to play. Maths tells me that is enough to see us crowned champions! Maths tells the computer the same thing.

16

Ronny and the boys celebrate so hard that Ronny has to call in sick for the next couple of weeks.

17

He’s not needed against Leicester, Renaldo and George Jetson see us through to the final where we face.

18

There is a little bit of history between us, Ajax beat us in the final last year and are going for European domination, a third Champions League on the bounce. It’s going to be tough, and even more so when I find out that Marcio won’t be playing.

19

With the league over I do a bit of squad rotation to try and keep players fit but also in good form as we run up to the Champions League final. Penafiel are beaten 2-0, we draw with Academica 2-2, snatch a 1-0 win at home to Rio Ave and draw 3-3 away to Maia coming back from 0-3 down at half time and despite that being the 2nd eleven playing we will need to show the same sort of spirit if we hope to beat an excellent Ajax side.

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The 22nd May arrives, it’s final day, this performance is “O fim da linha,” (the end of the line) for my Brazilian adventure, is what I’ve been aiming for and was denied a year ago by the same team. The starting eleven are chosen.

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It’s going to be a tough match, especially when disaster strikes in the 8th minute. Captain and defensive giant Vinicius (Aldair) goes off injured. Gralak is on in his place. It gets even worse in the 14th minute when Goosens scores. We are not really at the races in the first half but when Ronny’s in your team you always have a chance and he scores in the 40th minute as we go in at the half 1:1. Dida really shows up in the second half with a fine display and I take back all the things I’ve said about him (he is still really inconsistent though). Unfortunately Van Der Sar is equally as good in their goal and despite a strong attacking showing the second half is goalless and we enter extra time. It looks like it is heading to penalties….

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GRALAK !!!!!!!!!! You beauty, dream realised.

23

Oh and we win the last league game to go out with a bang.

24

What a year, here are a few stats from the team.

Assists

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Goals

26

Avg. Ratings

27

These two have been a pretty handy strike partnership over the last three years.

2829

All that is left is to show you is the Annual awards.

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I’m not sure if Ronaldo can win European footballer of the year, but he should have done, 45 goals and a Champions League winners medal. It’s been a fun three episodes, I can highly recommend building your own Brazilian super squad, maybe not in Madeira, unless you have the patience of a saint. Thanks for reading and if I come up with another idea maybe I will see you again (metaphorically of course). Tchau!

My thanks to Rob for a brilliant series. He’ll be back in future with more. You can follow Rob on Twitter @Taitanator

 

Building Brazil – Part 14: Rob was right

Rob Tait has adapted his all Brazil save in Blue Peter fashion. He brought you Uniao Madeira’s rise but has picked up with his Sporting Lisbon save which is a far more successful version. Catch up with part 13 here.

We finished part one of our Brazilian Blue Peter adventure sitting pretty at the top of the league, 10 wins and a draw from the first 11 games. We are away to Braga in the first game of this middle section of the season and after four minutes Ronny puts us ahead and we cruise to half time one goal up. Unfortunately the wheels come off rather quickly in the second half and it is twelfth game unlucky for us, especially as Flavi C get injured too.

1

After the disappointment of losing our 100% record we finally get underway in the Taca at home to lower league side Marinhense, things are looking good up until the 71st minute when seven minutes of madness have me biting my nails as we just hold on for a win. You can move the Brazilians from one save to the next but their ability to throw away a lead seems like a mathematical constant. The important thing is we made it through to the quarters.

2

A very favourable draw again.

3

Two days later and we face Sparta Prague in our final Group E qualifying game. We really need to win after somehow losing both our games against Real in update one. Unfortunatley we can only manage a draw. I must have been so dispondant that I fogot to screen shot the game and went straight to the table to see if 10 points would get us a place as one of the two best second place finishers. Amazingly thanks to our goal difference we snuck through and Bayern don’t make it.

4

5

I’ve never been more relieved to see this screen.

6

No easy draws in the Quarters though.

7

After all the drama of the champions league we can’t get up for an away match to Academica, luckily RC is on had to score a trademark screamer and rescue a point. Flair 20 anyone?

8

Ronny’s been quite for a couple of games but he loves the carnival atmosphere away at Rio Ave and makes up for lost time. He’s too good for Portugal!

9

We can’t replicate the excellent result in Rio when Penafiel visit, Ronny’s on a come down and only gets a rating of a 6, so strike partner Leandro has to step up.

10

What a earth is going on, we couldn’t stop winning at the start of the season and now we can’t seem to string a set a results together.

11

I decide that to remedy this situation I’ll sign Rivaldo, don’t need him, but that isn’t the point. Unfortunately I’ve spent all the cash building this team and now I can’t afford to pay decent wages.

12

I think he should have taken the pay cut just so he could be part of this adventure. The threat of losing their places, and a weeks rest pays dividends as we run out comfortable winners against Belenenses.

13

That’s the halfway point in the season and those poor results coupled with Vit. G’s excellent form means we are only in second place.

14

There are five league games left till the end of this update and the first of those five is against league leaders Vit. G. Not sure how they have scored 35 goals, they only had one shot on target to our fourteen. It’s a comfortable victory in the end.

15

Next up is Felgueiras who were a thorn in Brazilian Uniao’s side but Brazilian Sporting have got this covered.

16

A little run is developing here as we brush Alverca aside.

17

The penultimate league game of the update is against Maritimo and despite their best attacking efforts Denilson secures all the points for the boys from Brazil.

18

Before the final league game we host Anadia (another non league side) in the Taca, the B team of Roddy Jetson (Romario) and Carlos Renaldo (Bebeto) get it done.

19

Uh oh, we face a proper team in the semis.

20

The final game of the update is against Estrela Amadora. Their super keeper Chilavert (he is actually really good in this game) was rating a 9 before his sending off in the 38th minute. Ronny doesn’t punish them from the spot but makes up for it later on.

21

What a set of results, Vit. G only manage four points in those five games and there is a big swing at the top of the table.

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As we look towards the final update we are still in all three competitions. I’m feeling confident about league victory but the Champions league and Taca look problematic. We were champions league runners up last year but our groups stage was poor and Man Utd are Man Utd. Joins me next week for the final update of the whole Brazilian adventure.

You can follow Rob on Twitter @Taitanator

Building Brazil – Part 13: Brazil meets Blue Peter

Rob Tait is back in Brazil but…here’s one he made earlier. A far more Brazilian all Brazil team. I’ll let Rob explain…

So, season four ended relatively positively and I got over excited and played though seasons five and six in the hope of finding some inspiration to keep this going. It didn’t happen and I’m kind of over Uniao for now. However I wanted to provide a better ending to this blog than an abrupt stop. That’s when I thought about the inspiration for the blog, a Sporting Lisbon team that I created full of actual Brazilian superstars and their illegitimate children. So I’m going to play through my final season with a “here’s one I created earlier” Brazilian team.

Here they are then, some familiar names and a few young regens. Luis Carlos Jacare is Jorginho, Glaucio Vinicius is Aldair, Ze Maria is Branco, M Franco is Julio Caesar, Renaldo is Bebeto and Roddy Jetson is Romario. This team took two or three years to create and I had to win the Champions League to attract people like Ronaldo.

1

I’m starting the season like this I’m sure we will change it up as some of the youngsters develop and injuries appear.

2

First up is the Supertaca against Porto. Denilson started the season with a MOM performance and I’m hoping for good things from him as he hasn’t really been firing on all cylinders since I signed him a year and a bit ago.

3

League game one and the season is off to a good start.

4

Our reward for the winning start is an alright Champions League group but Madrid will no doubt give us a little challenge.

5

Having identified a need for some more defensive experience I rescue Marcio from the Midlands.

6

Felgueiras are no real match for us, Ronaldo’s scoring five of the six goals.

7

Juninho is out for a month so I go shopping again and sign left winger Djalminha, he’s got good stats and been playing well for Valencia over the years.

8

At home to Alverca and Djalmin makes an immediate impact, Denilson switches to the right inside winger role and he is loving it there too.

9

The Portuguese league starts so late that it’s already mid September and we face a real test against Real in our first Champions League group game. It’s fair to say it doesn’t go well, but the score does seem a tad unfair and we lose Leonardo and Gralak to injury. Here are the player ratings just to show that we basically the Brazilian national side playing in Europe.

10

We put the bad result behind us and travel to Madeira to face Maritimo, Juninho back from injury and on the score sheet.

11

I’d forgotten we had the second leg of the Supertaca to play. In an odd decision Dida (who seems to be conceding a lot) gets MOM but we win on the away goals rule. Ronaldo is scoring for fun, he is a little too good for this level.

12

It’s Estrela up next and it’s Ronaldo again, bagging a hat trick in the final four minutes.

13

It’s international call up time and we have a few in the squad.

14

Away to LASK in the Champions League and we get the three points to try and keep pace with Real, we might need to sneak through as one of the two best second placers so the more goals the better.

15

Another game and another win, more goals for Ronny.

16

He’s on the score sheet again against Leca but the injury to Flavio is a concern, I don’t have a great replacement for him.

17

I decide to put mini Aldair and captain Vinicius into the DMC role for a tie against Sparta and it’s still all going well.

18

Ex Chelsea legend Hiario is on fine form for Porto and Dida keeps conceding. It was a funny five minutes where we went from certain victory to bad draw.

20

A week later and we play the other powerhouse of Portuguese football and local rivals Benfica. A better performance from Dida gives us a deserved victory.

21

We take all this momentum to the Bernabeu but CM great Miki Landreau plays out of his skin. I look at the stats and I can’t believe we have lost both games against them.

22

We come back strong against Chaves who don’t hit the target in 90 minutes.

23

More goals follow against LASK, which we will need if we are to qualify to the quarters.

24

The first day of advent and we travel to Boavista for the final game of the update. We win again, Ronny scores again and life is good.

25

Unsurprisingly we are top of the league with ten wins and a draw out of the eleven played. Quite surprisingly Vit. G are only three points behind and seem to be flying.

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It’s a strong start to the first update. I do miss the struggles I had in Madeira a little bit but watching the Real Ronaldo do his thing is rather enjoying. Come back for part two to see if we can continue our European adventure

You can follow Rob on Twitter @Taitanator

Building Brazil – Part 12: Tao perto, porem tao longe

Rob Tait is back with the end of Season 4 of his Uniao Madeira adventure. The all Brazil team has taken a bit of a detour but can they finish the season with a flourish? Catch up with part 11 here.

We finished part 2 second in the league and with a real possibility of achieving champions league qualification. This however is not enough for captain Peu who picks now to drop this bomb shell.

1

I really though we might be over all this nonsense, apparently not, obviously my answer is no. This doesn’t go down well and Eddy P makes his feelings known against Sporting when he gives up defending. Cup run over. Don’t be fooled by his 29th minute goal he was trying to deflect Laelson’s shot wide.

2

We then lose loanee signing baby Bebeto when Santos buy him, he didn’t want to come to us!

3

Our next league game is a repeat of the Sporting cup tie. The keepers don’t turn up for this game, it felt like every shot on target went in. We also lose our left back Adriano (Branco) for six weeks. I don’t need these injuries at this stage.

4

It’s another tough game next, away to Braga. Laelson’s former strike partner Nene now plays for them and like Savio did in a previous update he gets a brace and we lose 1-3.

5

With 10 games left we are third with 46 points three points behind Porto. Benfica are runaway leaders and the league will surely be theirs soon. Up next 12th place Belenenses visit the Barreiros and we finally get a result. Bugi comes back from injury and celebrates with a sending off which won’t be helpful. I feel like this challenge is hard enough without all this internal sabotage.

6

To add to our woes AC goes down in training the next day. Come on.

7

We have another home game next against Vit. Set. They take an early lead but we aren’t phased and power through to a good victory. Josa even gets a goal, in for the injured AC. I would play Josa more but he is a centre back with a strength of 6 so I just can’t bring myself to do it.

8

Bugi’s two game suspension begins so baby Lukic is in. Young keepers are the worst, they play like they don’t have any hands. A ghost also gets one of our goals but it doesn’t scare Academica and we throw away 3-1 lead at half time.

9

To make matters worse makeshift wingback Helcinho gets suspended and Leonidas gets injured.

10

I feel like the game knows I’m exploiting some glitch and is trying to stop me building a champions league winning Brazilian team.

We are at home to Varzim, they are bad, we are good. It’s another ghost goal too.

11

Bugi is back for our visit to Chaves, it’s by no means a classic but Vieira gets the winner in the 65th minute. He hasn’t been too bad a support act for Laelson.

12

With 5 games left we are in 2nd place, Porto have been stumbling all season, we are level in 59 points but we have a better goal difference. Can we hold on? The next game is against Porto, a classic six pointer!

13

A bit of an anti-climax but we are still ahead with only four left to play and guess who finally recovers from his knee injury.

14

I can’t start Henry SdC but he will be on the bench for sure, especially since we have the small challenge of Benfica away. It’s not a great start as Peu goes off after 9 minutes but with 30 minutes left we take the lead only to concede 6 minutes later. It finishes level which is a good result but not what we needed. Peu is out for 2 weeks, he also asks to leave again, his timing is impeccable.

15

It’s the other Vit next, Vit. G, we make heavy work of weak opposition but get the win. Henry SdC shows us what we have missed.

16

The penultimate game of the season is away to Farense, they have someone sent off after 24 minutes, I’m really not sure why all these names are going missing. Laelson and Vieira both bag a brace and we run out easy winners.

17

With one game left the league looks like this.

18

That draw against Benfica means we just have to wait and see. The final match is our local derby. We finish the season on song and it’s now just fingers crossed.

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Oh shit, well actually double shit. Shit one is that we finished third Porto also won their final game. Shit two is the fact I haven’t got any pictures of the league. I’m not sure what happened, I think in my frustration I forgot and then just played through till the start of Season 5, sorry. Anyway it is UEFA Cup football for us again and a close season of the inevitable rejections. This save has become a proper war of attrition. I will achieve my goal it might just take all 30 seasons to do it. Here are the awards for the year, Laelson pipped to the post by Leandro. If I could get him up top, Laelson and Leandro oh that would be something.

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Join me for season 5 part one where I will take you through our summer transfers. We will also mount a fresh UEFA cup challenge hopefully with a keeper in goal this time around.

You can follow Rob on Twitter @Taitanator

Building Brazil – Part 11: Laelson, talisma

Rob’s Brazilian experiment has taken Uniao Madeira into Europe…and back out again. Can they push on for domestic glory as season 4 heats up? Catch up with part 10 here.

In part one our European adventure was prematurely ended due to a CM conspiracy however our league form was recovering slightly and we now only have the Taca and the league to concentrate on so hopefully we can continue improving and secure a second season of European football.

First game up and we are away to Varzim who play at a stadium of the same name. It’s a positive start to the this update and Laelson is scoring again. For all the frustration this save idea has caused finding this random Brazilian guy who actually seems quite good has been brilliant. One of the things I love about this game is the random players in the database who get generated, it really makes you feel like you have found a hidden gem.

1

Our Portuguese reputation has increased enough that we are entered straight into the third round of the Taca, with league rivals Beira Mar (sea view) our opponents.

2

Back to the league and our talisman (talisma) Laelson scores again, we’ve got a little run developing, two wins on the bounce and four victories and a draw in the last five games when you look back to part ten.

3

I make another sale, Maga-sarus was average at best so over £1 million is good value.

4

Our first game in December is a real test, away to Porto, it is a close match but our clinical finishing makes all the difference. It wasn’t as one sided as the scoreline suggests.

5

It’s Taca taco time next and Beira Mar are no match for us in this rich vein of form. Laelson with another brace. I need to win a trophy just for him.

6

The quarter final draw sees us face the winner of Sporting and Felgueiras. I know who I would prefer.

7

Another league victory follows, young Bebeto gets a couple, he hasn’t been as prolific as I was hoping he might be, his stats suggest he is a perfect fit for the formation and direct style.

8

Bugi has had enough of this nonsense and wants to go and play in Serie A, Roma and Juve are keen but I’m not selling yet. I want max value for him and he is really good. It seems Zenga’s regen is a must buy if you need a solid cheap keeper.

9

It is a real test next in the league as we host Benfica. As if to prove how good he is Bugi get MOM and keeps us in the game as we earn a point a hard fought point.

10

Obviously Sporting win their third round Taca tie so we travel to Lisbon.

11

Everton come calling for our left winger Da Silva, he is really good but his strength and stamina are so low that I can’t turn down the £3.5 million. Especially when we have Leonidas waiting in the wings.

12

New years eve, our final game of 2000 and Leonidas repays my faith in him as we finish the year with a bang. E.Claudio is starting to show some potential too.

13

December really has been good to us, Robson however doesn’t agree. If you’re not with us you’re against us Robbo.

14

I put the profits towards another unknown with good stats and a solid sounding name. Will he be the next Laelson?

15

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The first game of 2001 is our local derby, Laelson puts us in front and E.Claud and Leonidas do the rest.

17

That game was the halfway point in the season and we have come back strong, 2nd place and Champions league football are achievable but Benfica seem to be running away with the league. Bugi is really coming through in goal, we have only conceded 10 goals. We’ve never been a defensive powerhouse before so it feels a little strange.

18

Off to the coast next and new boy Vieira opens his account as we cruise to an early 2-0 lead and then relax into another clean sheet.

19

Our great form has continued into the new year and the lad Laelson is at it again. Jefferson made it tough but we battled to a victory.

20

The last game of January is away to Alverca, we concede however we score four, Euclides de Claudio is coming into his own on the inside right and H. da Silva da Costa (Rai) is playing great through the middle.

21

Of course he is, it is a tough blow, he is averaging over 7.50 and has made that centre mid position his own. He will be missed.

22

Next up Espinho and new boy Vieira gets a perfect (I like to think it was) hat-trick.

23

The final game of this update and we travel to the Bessa to face Boavista. Unfortunately we are woeful and 0:0 at half time really flatters us. Boavista take advantage of Bugi being sent off and our impotence in front of goal to run out worthy winners.

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What a record to hold! It is a disappointing end to a brilliant middle third of the season but when I look at the table I can’t be upset. We are profiting from Porto being below par but with 12 games left to go second place is still on the table.

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Join me next week for part twelve, I can’t wait, it’s the first time since season one that things seem to be falling into place as a breeze of positivity blows through Madeira.

You can follow Rob on Twitter @Taitanator 

Building Brazil – Part 10: A Europa Acena

It’s time for season 4 of Rob’s Brazilian challenge. He set out to make an all Brazilian team to storm the Portugese league and…it’s sort of worked out. Catch up with part 9 here.

Season four starts early for us, we have such a low reputation that we have to play in the UEFA Preliminary round on July 26th. Oh and as usual I am struggling to attract players and the ones that do want to come aren’t prepared to be paid the £800 p/w that the board have capped my wages at. This save is frustrating and enjoyable in equal measure not to worry we are on a europa acena (European adventure) to Malta and the Naxxer Lions.

1

The squad is a bit low in numbers and because I’m starting so earlier nobody I sign can play in Europe until the quarter finals, which I am optimistically hoping we reach.

2

Rai – not interested

3

Joel – not interested

4

Nene – wants to leave

5

Bebeto – says no

6

I just wanted to show how hard I am trying to actually sign some Brazilians so that you empathises with all the non Brazilian signings I’m going to make in a minute. Before that though, it is the end of July and Naxxer are here. European football in Madeira! It is safe to say they were not great.

7

Told you, I have no idea who Keates is but Craib is Gary McCallister.

8

The second leg in Malta is just a formality and despite theses stats, the result was a little bit shocking.

9

Doesn’t matter though, we are through and the next stop on our great adventure is…

10

Portugal. Vitoria Secrets finished 5th last year but somehow they didn’t need to go through a preliminary qualifier!

I sell Carlos because he’s 33 and doesn’t play so £190k seems a good price.

11

Then, something amazing happens. Word travels back to Brazil about trips to Malta and suddenly they all come running, well sort of.

12

13

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The squad is assembled ready for the UEFA cup first round and guess what, loanees don’t seem to get cup tied, amazing.

15

It’s a tight affair away to Vitoria but Da Silva comes up trumps and we take a strong victory and away goal into the second leg.

16

At this point they all start asking to leave again, I’m going to stop putting in pictures, just assume they all want to leave, it’s easier. I also add a young Italian as midfield cover and John Lukic’s son Nigel as keeper cover. Onto the season opener hosting Beira Mar and all our hard work in europe means we are slow and tired and therefore lose, not the best of starts.

17

Two days later and it’s clear we were saving ourselves for big game. Bring on round two and £250k prize money.

18

The second round sees us face TSV Munich 1860.

19

As we move through the gears in europe the domestic front sees us stall. We lose at home for the second game in a row and we were bad, really really bad, the two goals were undeserved.

20

Away to Estrela next and we dominate but cannot score, it ends 0-0 and we have one point from nine, not the start I was looking for. European football has proved an unwelcome distraction we clearly can’t concentrate on two competitions at the same time. We follow up that 0-0 with another against Espinho, they don’t even have a shot on target but we can’t take advantage, I’m starting to worry.

We have our UEFA tie against Munich next and I don’t fancy our chances however we are fantastic, we play them off the park and lose 2-3, they had five shots on target we had eleven, it’s unjust but with two away goals I’m confident we can still make it through.

21

Uh oh this is not good news

22

This week’s league game is against Boavista at home and it’s another 0-0 draw. After five games we are 15th one place above the relegation zone, Sporting Lisbon are doing even worse than us though so they sack Carlos Manuel just in time for our league match next.

23

It’s just what we need and after they miss a penalty early on we make them pay in the second half. The win takes us up to 12th, few.

24

We host TSV Munich next so this victory and the two away goals are just what we need to overturn the deficit. But then disaster, I don’t know what has happened, well I do but just can’t believe it.

25

I sold Carlos and got a couple of free transfer keepers as backup but since the cup started so early they are both cup tied and Bugi is suspended. The game though can generate a player when this happens but they generate me H Filipe a FUCKING left back, this is BULLSHIT. I’m sorry for swearing but a non keeper in goal is disastrous, you concede pretty much every shot! Edinaldo Peu gets the nod and we give it a really good go but ultimately we lose after extra time. I almost believed at 3-1 up but Becker did us in with his second goal.

26

After that result I go on tilt and sell Nene to Braga because he isn’t scoring and the money is too good to turn down.

27

We go back to the league and another 0-0 away to Belenenses, scoring used to be our thing in the league. There is a little ray of hope though, He’s back.

28

Even though Laelson doesn’t play just having him back makes all difference against Braga, we finally score and win.

29

Next up we travel to Vit. Setubal and it’s another win. I was so happy when Joel scored, I was resigned to another 0-0 draw, I think the tide maybe turning.

30

The final game of this long and eventful update and we face Academica at the Barreiros. It’s another game that we dominate only to concede a late goal that stops us taking all three points. Some games we just seem to concede a goal every time they hit the target. Young Zenga is still a little inconsistent it seems.

31

Our up and down performances leave us in 7th place but with two thirds of the season left to play hopefully we can secure European football for a second season.

32

See you next week for more of this bizarre adventure.

You can follow Rob on Twitter @Taitanator

Building Brazil – Part 9: What is a ÿÿÿÿÿÿÿÿÿÿÿÿÿÿÿÿX?

It’s the end of another season for Rob Tait and his Portugese adventure. His all Brazilian side is on the cusp of European qualification but can they get it done? Catch up with part 8 here.

We finished the last update with 12 league games remaining and a potential UEFA cup place in our sights. My first order of business is to sell Marquinhos, I feel a little bad, he helped me out of league two and was pretty good last year but Nene is better and third choice Robson looks handy to I take the £250,000. The clubs financial position is awful and this small fee will take the pressure off for a week or so.

1

It does seem that any time we sell a player the team respond with a poor performance and ultimately a defeat, since we face Lisbon next that was probably going to happen anyway so when we come back from 0-2 down I can barely believe it, just as I start to think we could snatch a winner the game game senses my optimism and allows Assis to finish us of with 15 minutes left. I think the very unlikely 2nd place is off the cards now.

2

As is the case we bounce back in emphatic style the following week away to Salgueiros and although we conceded two goals the result was never in doubt. Despite the win tragedy strikes in the final five minutes and Laelson is rhino charged by and angry Salgueiros defender while running down the clock. This is heart in mouth time, especially after the recent sales of Savio and Marquinhos.

3

WTF, that is not good, is this what happens when they get a career ender? I’ve never seen this before and I’m scared.

The player screen doesn’t help, as you can see he has scored 21 in 27 games, this is bad, really bad.

4

I check again a week later and am relieved but also nervous. I once had a game where Jon Dahl Tomasson got an injury and his period out just kept rising instead of going down and I’m worried this is going to happen to little Jose. Even if it doesn’t 9 months without him will feel like a lifetime.

5

The next game is a blur, AC and Jefferson take their frustrations out on Farense in a game that we somehow manage to win. I could really do without suspensions at this crucial stage in the season. I can’t do another season where nobody wants to join me, I need Europen football!

6

7

We are on song again the week before all the suspensions kick in and dismantle a poor Leiria side. Maybe we will be alright without Laelson (I’ve never written a sentence with less confidence).

8

This sort of behaviour is really starting to piss me off, I’ve made these boys, nobody else gave them a chance and now just as we lie of the precipice of making the dream a reality and playing in Europe. No Nene, No, NO NOOOO!!!!

9

The suspensions begin and we have travelled to Espinho the home of our ex Brazilian international Savio. In the most even of games we of course lose and who else but flippin Savio pops up with the crucial goals.

10

Things go from bad to worse with the next two pieces of news.

11

12

Well that’s the my keeper gone. Even if he wanted to play for us, which he doesn’t £775,000 is £775,000 more than I can afford. I better start researching New Zenga’s heritage, looks like he will be with us a while longer. A small piece of good news though, Laelson is slowly recovering. I’ve never been more relieved.

13

The suspensions continue to take their toll and even though we can still score AC is being missed in defense as we concede five in the next two games. Even more annoying is the fact we were ahead both times but couldn’t hang it’s four points dropped.

14

15

To make matters even worse the Peu injury is for a month. He is our captain and has been one of the best players this season. I really don’t need this now. I’m scared to check the league table but I know I have to.

16

Five games left and 3rd is still doable, just look at the against column though, 51, 51! The final five games start well though as we beat 6th place Vit. G 1-0 a result that just isn’t in our arsenal.

17

We stay 5th after this one, four games left and Benfica and Vit. S are only one point ahead. Loanee Henrique is an angry young man, I can only assume it is the responsibility of having to fill Rai’s shoes. Oh and of course we get another suspension, just to help out.

18

Oh goodie our next game is away to Benfica, a real six pointer. AC, back from suspension goes down injured in the 7th minute (seriously the game hates me at the moment) and when they go 0-1 ahead I’m dejected, head in hands. But then a ray of hope Robson gets an equaliser, then three minutes later Nene puts us ahead. I spend the next 16 virtual minutes with my fingers over my eyes. I take it back, this is a just and fair game, I will never doubt it’s wisdom again.

19

Three games to go and we are third again two points clear of fourth but with AC out for two weeks Peu, the leader that he is climbs off his death bed to help with that final push. Shit, we are hosting Porto next. No unexpected victories this week.

20

Down to fifth again a point off third and two games to go. I’ve never felt so nervous about a final two games and all we are going for is third but I’m not sure how many teams get European spots so I really want third to guarantee my place. AC is back for the next game and we are getting close to full strength for the final two. Away to Felgueiras first, we smashed them in league two but since our promotions they are a bit of a bogey side. Fortunately Nene gets a couple before they score to make the last 16 minutes another nervous affair.

21

Back up to third again, one point in between fourth and fifth. The final game is a local derby with Maritimo. We get off to the best of starts with Jefferson scoring after a minute however despite dominating it is still only 1-0 at the end of the half.

22

That’s it, we made it. I feel like we have stumbled through the last 12 games but this is an amazing result. We are in Europe next year and surely now we can attract some young regens, plus, maybe we can get rid of some of these big club release clauses and everyone might stop asking to leave.

23

It’s a whopping £330k which actually I didn’t want as I was hoping to get into the red and receive another healthy investment in the off season.

24

The end of year awards roll by and there is limited recognition for this amazing feat of mine. Jardel topped the scoring charts with 28 and I can’t help feel that Laelson would have been close to that without the injury. Never mind, he is on the mend and Europe beckons, better hope this glitch I’ve been banking on actually works. A small positive is Mini Zenga gets the young player award, Zenga had a Brazilian great grandmother didn’t he.

25

Join me for season four to find out how we strengthen in the off season and prepare for UEFA cup football.

You can follow Rob on Twitter @Taitanator