♥ ♥ ♥ Echte Liebe ♥ ♥ ♥ The FM13 Journey Ends

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After three seasons, 1’078 days, 1’304 posts, 189 matches, 615 goals, seven trophies, two clubs, and one brief international stint, the RTFM project on Football Manager 2013 has come to an end. I’ve taken the decision to pause the save now before the 2015-16 pre-season begins, but this is NOT the end of RTFM which will reboot with the release of Football Manager 2016.

I haven’t decided on which club I will begin at in FM16, with a handful of options being considered, but the blog will return to a daily format as soon as I have a copy of the game and can “holiday” the in-game date to mirror the actual date before resuming real-time.

I will archive all the FM13 content from my time at Austria U19, Borussia Dortmund, and Wigan Athletic under a separate FM13 menu, with the usual squad, fixtures, and statistics pages being created for the FM16 version.

RTFM will continue to publish articles over the summer, with a weekly “what happened next?” post going up after I resign at my current club Borussia Dortmund and holiday unemployed for six months at a time. I’ll also look to bring you great FM writing from around the community, so keep following the blog and our social feeds!

Thanks to everyone who read my journey so far, and I stress that it’s just due to wanting to reboot the save and take advantages of some fantastic young players who have broken through to top-flight football in real life over the past three seasons, as well as resetting the state of leagues and high-profile transfers.

#EchteLiebe

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Loanees Return to Signal Iduna Park

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The club has welcomed back sixteen players to Signal Iduna Park that spent the last season out on loan, though two of those – Mustafa Amini (with Australia at the Asian U22 Championship) and Marvin Ducksch – have been released after not being offered new contracts.

Kevin Großkreutz and Leonardo Bittencourt return from top-flight action overseas having been on loan at AC Milan and Ajax respectively, while Ogün Gümüstas was at Energie Cottbus who won promotion to 1.Bundesliga, and Marc Hornschuh spent the season at 3.Liga title-winners Sandhausen.

PLAYER            POS  LOAN CLUB     DIV  APP GLS AST POM  AVE
Mustafa AMINI     AMC  Sandhausen    3L   27   5   3   2   6.85
Leo BITTENCOURT   AMC  Ajax          INT  30   5   3   0   6.83
Marcel DEELEN     DL   Rostock       2BL   5   0   1   0   6.38
Nils DIETZ        DM   Aalen         3L   24   0   1   0   6.42
Marvin DUCKSCH    ST   Darmstadt     REG  32   8   3   0   6.72
Jeremy DUDZIAK    MC   Ingolstadt    2BL  13   0   2   0   6.56
Erik DURM         ST   Braunschweig  2BL  32  13   2   2   6.96
Paul EHMANN       DM   Oberhausen    REG  35   1   2   0   6.18
Kevin GROßKREUTZ  AML  AC Milan      INT   8   1   0   0   6.76
Ogün GÜMÜSTAS     ST   Cottbus       2BL   1   0   0   0   6.30
Koray GÜNTER      DC   St Pauli      2BL  29   3   0   3   7.03
Marc HORNSCHUH    DC   Sandhausen    3L   37   1   4   2   6.97
Florian HÜBNER    DC   Braunschweig  2BL  31   0   1   1   6.59
Kai KAUL          DC   Offenbach     U19   0   0   0   0   -
Hervé MATTHYS     DC   Darmstadt     REG  17   0   1   1   6.62
Thomas MEIßNER    DC   Aachen        2BL  30   1   0   0   6.54

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Blackpool have announced that Millwall boss Derek Adams will be their new manager, after the 40 year-old Scot left his post at The Den yesterday. Adams guided Millwall to 16th in the Championship last season, but were knocked out of both domestic cups at the first hurdles.

Former Valladolid manager Miroslav Djukic has been appointed as the new man in charge of Racing Santander. The 49 year-old, capped 49 times by Serbia, had been out of top-flight management since being dismissed by Valladolid in November 2013.

Dortmund Diary: Reus Injury, Season Tickets

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Daily Dortmund Diary, Monday 29 June 2015:

Marco Reus will miss BVB’s opening friendlies after twisting his left knee in a training session. The club’s medical team have indicated that he’ll be sidelined for a fortnight, sitting-out the matches on 08 and 11 July at Wuppertal and Bielefeld respectively.

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The club have announced that they have sold 22,002 season tickets so far since sales began. The marketing team said that they expect to sell another 31,100 as the season approaches taking the total to around 53,100 of Signal Iduna Park’s 80,720 capacity.

Dortmund Submit £15m Bid for Ter Stegen

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Borussia Dortmund have made an official bid for Borussia Mönchengladbach goalkeeper Marc-André ter Stegen, with the domestic transfer window opening on Wednesday. Ter Stegen is transfer listed by request after failing to agree new terms at Borussia-Park.

The 23 year-old German international (7 caps) kept nine clean sheets in 1.Bundesliga last season and has a £23m release clause, but Dortmund believe they can agree a deal at a lower value due to the player’s reluctance to remain at a Gladbach side who missed out on continental football this season.

Gladbach are thought to want closer to £19m for the player ahead of his contract expiring next summer. Though failure to seal a summer deal would surely mean a knock-down price in the new year before the player who has spent his entire career at the club can leave on a free.

Howard Hero as Ten-Man USA Defend Cup

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Tim Howard saved Néstor Araujo’s sudden-death penalty to successfully defend the CONCACAF Gold Cup after a thrilling two hours of football between USA and Mexico in New Orleans which finished 1-1 after extra-time.

It was the sixth meeting between the two nations in the history of the thirteen Finals, with Mexico going into the game with four wins to the States’ one, but it was the hosts who won back-to-back Gold Cups for the second time in their history.

Jozy Altidore put USA in front in the 27th minute when he powered a header home from a fine Tim Chandler cross, and Chandler was involved on the stroke of half-time when he deflected Jesús Zavala’s shot off the line and over his own bar when the Newcastle midfielder had rounded Howard and looked certain to equalise.

That equaliser came with eighteen minutes to play as Javíer Hernández scored his sixth of the tournament when he was played in by Giovani dos Santos, beat Howard to the ball and slotted home.

Five minutes later it looked like things had gone from bad to worse for USA as Ángel Reyna was put through by Hernández, only to be tripped two yards outside the box by last-defender Édgar Castillo who was dismissed by the referee. Mexico couldn’t make the advantage as the game went to penalties after a dull extra-time.

Brek Shea, dos Santos, and Bradley Johnson all scored before Howard pushed Hernández’s spot-kick around the post, but Joshua Gatt couldn’t capitalise and had his weak effort saved by Guillermo Ochoa.

David Cabrera, Altidore, Zavala, Michael Orozoco Fiscal, and Néstor Vidrio then all found the back of the net and it was tied at 4-4 after five penalties apiece.

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Clint Dempsey stepped-up and found the top corner to put all the pressure on Arajuo to keep Mexico in it. He went to Howard’s left with a powerful spot-kick, but the Everton ‘keeper went the same way and pushed his penalty on to the post and out to win the States their sixth Gold Cup.

France Beat England to Win European U21s

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Neal Maupay’s goal ten minutes from time won France their first UEFA U21 Championship since 1988 with a 1-0 victory over holders England in Plzen this afternoon. The two sides were evenly matched after four straight wins to take them to the Final, though France lost tournament top-scorer Yaya Sanogo in the Semi-Final with an arm injury.

England goalkeeper Aidan Grant faced his first serious test shortly after the half-hour mark when Baptiste Sanchez was played through by Philippe Pierre, but Grant was able to flick the ball wide as the Bordeaux striker went to round him and slot home.

Lucas Digne came closest to breaking the deadlock in a close-fought encounter when he hammered against the crossbar from six yards out as France were better in the air at their sixth corner of the match.

France looked the more likely to score, and the goal finally came when Saphir Taïder drilled a low shot at goal from the edge of the box. Grant managed to push it away but couldn’t hold on, and Maupay scored his fourth of the tournament by poking home the loose ball.

England pushed for a late equaliser, but couldn’t find it through Harry Kane or Thomas Ince, and were nearly caught on the break inside the final five minutes but a poor finish from Paul Pogba kept it at 1-0. French captain Kurt Zouma was voted man-of-the-match award and, moments later, lifted the trophy.