January Out

Gauto leaves after failing to break into the side. Ze Carlos head was turnt by premier league football. Fabio Silva is another who never delivered so returns to England to play for Fulham. Real Sociedad poached my young CB for €38m, Segovia chased the money in Al-Riyadh and Leite was bought by Zenit.

January In

Backup keeper signed on a free purely as cover.

Sold to Chelsea for €7.75m with 50% sell on, a year later resigned for €2.8m with 20% sell on.

League Table

Even with top scorer in the division in Lucca

We couldn’t do better than third. Close to Benfica but Porto ran away with it.

Cup Competitions

Out in the Champions League vs Barcelona, and the Allianz cup in semis vs Benfica but we did win the Taca De Portugal Placard.

Summer Out

This summer we saw a big clear out. Newcastle poached Akdogan for €54m, Carvalho was snapped up by City for €49m, Fabio Carvalho fancied some oil money in a €17.25m move to Al-tal. Estevao joined Juventus for €32.5m. Reyna followed Carvalho to the middle east in a €12.25m deal and was joined by Joao Palhinha in a €43.5m deal. Liverpool swooped in for Caceres on a €54m deal. Dhiego returned to Brazil for €16m. Arsenal then snapped up our wonderkid for €66m. Youngster Felicissimo moved to Empoli for €4.4m. Ajax took Fellahi for €17.5m. Newcastle came back in to take our keeper for €45.5m then our Left back for €68m! Ajax took another youngster for €25.5m and Balseiro went to Greece for €450k. A summer with a potential total fees received of €505.85m!
So now you would think we would be going for a massive spend on overhauling the squad.

Summer in

Nope, 1 signing on a free for the first team As Ruben Neves comes in to replace Joao Palhinha. And 3 signings for the future. Our recruitment and development up to this point has left us in a strong position to promote within.

Just one signing for the first team this summer and its a big one on a free. I wanted a deeper playmaker for our tactical reset and Neves was perfect choice.

Youth Prospects

€9m for 19 year old Mexican from CDF America, A loan to Koln will help his development.

€450k fee for an African talent from Orlando Pirates before agreeing to loan him to PSV for first team football.

€2.6m was spent on this Colombian youngster, who will spend the season on loan in Sweden for first team football.

Staff overhaul

I’ve overhauled the backroom staff and restructured the Chain of command. Vasco Fernandes runs the footballing side of the club with Director of Football Rafa Benitez reporting to him. Under Rafas stewardship is Myself as Head Coach, Stefano Braghin formerly of Juventus as Head of Youth Development, Flavio Costa the Chief scout and new B team head coach Jonathan Risueno.

New tactic

At the start of the January window we were already 10 points behind Porto but hadn’t lost a game, just drew 5 which meant we were losing pace with them.

January rebuild


€60m, release clause met. Ribeiro leaves us for RBL as you can see his value has rocketed.

First Team In

As I mentioned before I don’t tend to do a lot of business in January for the first team, mainly usually it as a window to bring in young talent, We replaced the loss of Ribeiro by recalling Bobrov from his loan before bringing in 3 players to strengthen the team for the run in.

Young Left Back Vyacheslav Zoria joins us for €21.5m from Shakhtar, where he has been their starting LB for the last 2 years, We’ve been following him for a while and with a gap in the squad for a long term LB we decided to move quickly to secure the deal as interest in the player was increasing.

19 year old Englishman Stephen Whittle joins from Championship Fulham. Following their relegation from the Premier League last summer his relegation clause has been active. €29m was enough to bring in this talent.

As the season played out We seemed to lack options on the wing, at times having to use Ribero there. Gomez had 12 goals and 3 assists in Brazil for ATM so I parted with €14.75m to bring him in.

Youth Prospects

We now wanted to look at youth players to bring in for the future,

Our former youth player who we sold to Milan 4 seasons ago has failed to make the break through there, I’ve brought him back as at 21 I think there is still time to work on him, A €5.5m investment.

Staying in Italy, Salernitana starting centre back was impressing in Serie B. €6.25m release clause was paid and we’ve brought him in with and eye on the long term first team.

One of my favourite features the last few years has been the new recruitment focus as I find it helps me find players I would have missed before, Deep in Peru 17 year old Rojas was starting every week for Sport Huancayo with a €650k release clause as soon as he turnt 18 I moved to get him.

We can find talent all over the world, places like Peru but also at home in Portugal, €1.5m was spent on Tiago Maia from Lusitania Lourosa in the second division. Which helps with homegrown quotas long term.

Jego, French youth talent who had broke through to Toulouse first team last season in Ligue 1, following their relegation he had started every game in Ligue 2 so far this season. €8.5m was enough to secure him and he is now on loan to Braga to get a higher level of football.

I like finding young players that have broken through at their clubs at a young age. Sapa was first choice at Rakow who are mid table in the Polish top flight. €3.3m investment to bring him to the club.

Scandinavia is another place I love to scout for talents and I think we have found one here in Johansson, Costing €1.3m from Mjallby AIF, interestingly he is a FC Nordsjaelland youth product and he was release, picked up by Lyngby on a free, after just 5 games Mjallby signed him for $550k, Two great seasons in Sweden playing 42 games, he was highlighted to me for a low fee. He has been loaned out to Alaves to help his development.

€8.75m fee to bring Cappiello in. A centre midfielder who had a great loan in Poland last season and came back and broke into the Udinese first team. With 17 games already this season in Serie A he could be one pushing to start here quickly.

Guardiola has been impressing for Betis youth teams and my scouts were pushing for him to be signed. €14.25m deal was agreed.

€2.1m for another Swedish talent, Had been starting every week for AIK, Loan to Blackburn for his development to continue.

€11.25m for an 18 year old striker who’s scored 11 in 44 goals for FC Kobenhavn so far in his career. Quick, hard working finisher. What more do we need?! Will miss most of the season due to injury.

18 year old Mexican who’s played 50 games for Leon over the past 2 seasons scoring 9 cost us €12m to bring him to Europe.

We invested €19m in this Brazilian attacker who is described as a wonderkid. 47 games for Sao Paulo last season scoring 20 goals. A loan move to Flamengo who finished 4th compared to Sao Paulos 7th gives him a chance to continue his development.

And last but not least €925k was spent on this Argentinian striker from Roasario Central. He has plenty of room to grow. At the moment the B team feels more his level.

This is how our XI looks for the final few months of the season.


  • 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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