In this guest post @DGR_FM shares with us “The Secret Pioneer” Challenge. He will be doing it on Football Manager 23 and the challenge is open for anyone else to join him. Here he explains what the challenge is and the inspiration behind it.


I recently read the fabulous “Don Revie: The Biography” by Christopher Evans (who as a complete aside is a standing Member of Parliament). A large portion of the book tells the enthralling story of the Revie era at Leeds. That era is the inspiration to A) write this guest blog post and B) start a long term FM23 career with my new found understanding as a blueprint.

 Donald George Revie was a football pioneer. Miscast by history as a match fixer and brutal tactician even by 1960s British football standards


In March 1961, Revie was appointed player-manager of Leeds United, then a Second Division club who had never won a major trophy. Under Revie’s management, Leeds became a major force in English football, winning the Second Division in 1963–64, the First Division in 1968–69 and 1973–74, the FA Cup in 1972, the League Cup in 1968, the FA Charity Shield in 1969, and the Inter-Cities Fairs Cup in 1968 and 1971. Additionally, Leeds were First Division runners-up five times, three times FA Cup runners-up and runners-up in the Inter-Cities Fairs Cup and the European Cup Winners’ Cup. In July 1974 he accepted the job as England manager, but had an unsuccessful three years in the role before quitting in highly controversial circumstances to take up the management role with the United Arab Emirates. He later had spells in Middle Eastern club football with Al-Nasr and Al-Ahly. As Leeds manager he was criticised for the physical and often negative approach of his teams, though the period was noted for its highly physical football across the country.


 The framework for my save is as follows:


  • Build a club from an area that didn’t previously have a substantial football following. Leeds was predominantly a rugby and cricket city when Revie took the job in 1961.


  • Play a ruthless brand of football that excites the fan base yet is seen as abrasive to the opposition and football media. Favouring traditional shapes such as 4-4-2 or 4-5-1.


  • A secondary focus on opposition scouting reports and deploying specific tactical tweaks to exploit weaknesses of the opponent rather than simply maximising what your team does well.


  • Within 13 seasons win every top tier domestic trophy. Example – League title, League Cup, FA Cup.  Win two minor European trophies. The baked in difficult setting here is deciding how low down the leagues you start. Bonus marks for winning the European Cup (or Champions League as its now known) Revie’s white whale.


  • Have 7 players appear for the club over 700 times. Outside of the above trophy haul, this is the only benchmark of success and completion of the save. The number is loosely based on 6 great Leeds players (Charlton, Bremner, Reaney, Hunter, Madeley and Lorimer) surpassing the 700 mark. Its worth noting not all of their appearances came under Revie. But it’s a great way of building a core group of senior players and paying tribute to the great man’s family approach to building a football dynasty. This can and probably will take far longer than the 13 season timeline mentioned previously.


  • Develop an iconic number 4. Be that a destructive defensive midfielder or all action box to box metronome.




My suggestion would be, whichever club and country you decided to take up the challenge in, bow out on top! I’ll be starting my own journey in the coming weeks. Feel free to follow along or drop me a note about your progress.


  • Daniel Gear

    Dan Gear is a vibrant member of the Football Manager (FM) community, renowned for his engaging content and insightful tutorials. He illuminates complex FM concepts on "View From The Touchline" and shares engaging narratives through his unique European Journeyman save reveals. Dan's collaborative spirit shines in partnerships with fellow creators like FM Stag, unraveling new FM features. He's a co-host of the engaging "Grass N Gear" podcast, making the FM experience more enjoyable for many. With a blend of humor, expertise, and a knack for community engagement, Dan Gear's contributions significantly enrich the Football Manager community, making him a cherished figure among enthusiasts.

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