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Author Topic: Peterborough Utd. - 2012 & beyond - Quad Quest  (Read 8495 times)

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  • Suffering from early-onset douchiness
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Peterborough Utd. - 2012 & beyond - Quad Quest
« Reply #15 on: July 22, 2005, 04:10:01 PM »

Wesley Sneijder picks up a sprained ankle in training, but should only miss a week or so.

Unfortunately, the news on Niko Kranjcar is much worse... Kranjcar tears a groin muscle, and is expected out for a month.  The doctors all suggest he get surgery... but I'm reluctant, as it could leave him out for up to 6 months.  I decide to hold out, and just nurse him back to health the old fashioned way.  We have a wealth of attacking midfielders, so his loss for 1 month shouldn't be too painful.

19 year old reserve GK Ricardo Galo requests to leave London Road, saying he's having too much trouble adjusting to life in England.  He is Portuguese, and doesn't speak much English, so that's probably part of it.  I'll have to keep my eye on him.

Sept. 19, Match 7 (TV)
4-2-0, 1st pl., 14 pts.
@ Chelsea (3-2-1, 5th pl., 11 pts. - Leading scorer: Fernando Torres, 5)
Series: Even, 4-2-4, @ Stamford Bridge, Posh lead 2-1-1
Fav: Blues, 6:4

If Chelsea win by 2 goals today, they'll jump into 1st place.

Injured: Kranjcar, Zaccardo, Bocanegra, Sneijder
GK: Arenas
D: Lazzari, Alex, Sarr, Heitinga
M: Vanden Borre, Mngomeni, Karsnak, Gerard
S: Wallner, Cole

A surprisingly scoreless first half at Stamford Bridge... considering the average scores of our matches run somewhere around 3-2 to the winner.  Neither team had any golden opportunities, but several long shots were tracked down by the keepers, keeping the defenses fairly busy.

The second half is even slower than the first, as Chelsea put several balls wide of the target, and we are lucky to even get into good shooting position.  Not a barnburner as I had expected.  Our first scoreless draw with Chelsea in 11 matches.

Draw, 0-0, remain in 1st
Shots/on target: Blues 12/3, Posh 15/8
Poss: 55-45, Blues
MoM: Chelsea GK Petr Cech - 9 rating, 8 saves
Posh ratings: Heitinga (9), Arenas (8), Vanden Borre (8)
Posh subs: Mokoena (for Cole, 75'), Montolivo (for Gerard, 75')
A: 37,920

We put Manchester United in a great position with the draw, as they sit only 2 points back with 2 games in hand.


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Peterborough Utd. - 2012 & beyond - Quad Quest
« Reply #16 on: July 22, 2005, 04:12:57 PM »

The third leg of our attempted Quad gets underway, as the 32 remaining teams are put into the draw for the English League Cup (also known as the Carling Cup).  We get about the easiest draw imaginable, drawing a home game with League Two Bury.

Sept. 22, Match 8 (TV)
4-3-0, 1st pl., 15 pts.
@ Arsenal (2-3-1, 9th pl., 9 pts. - Leading scorer: Fernando Cavenaghi, 4)
Series: Gunners lead 5-2-2, @ Emirates Stadium: Arsenal lead 4-1-0
Fav: Gunners, 5:4

Injured: Sneijder, Zaccardo, Kranjcar
Unfit: Bocanegra, Gerard
GK: Arenas
D: de la Cuesta, Marcos, Alex, Gavilan
M: Jesus, Montolivo, Mascherano, Lampard
S: Mokoena, Cole

11'- Gavilan barges over Fernando Cavenaghi at the very edge of the box... we do not get the benefit of the doubt, and the penalty is given.  Cavenaghi takes it himself... SAVED!!!  Arenas guessed correctly, and de la Cuesta clears the rebound!

16'- Reyes crosses into traffic... and Hatem Ben Arfa heads it in past Arenas.  Absolutely clinical finishing by the French striker, and we trail 1-0.

43'- Cavenaghi with a great early ball to Reyes, who charges at the back post... Jose Antonio Reyes maybe hits the hardest shot I've ever seen... it skips low and past Arenas and in.  2-0 to The Arsenal.

We switch to an attacking 3-4-3 at halftime.  Mascherano has to leave with an injury.

60'- Fredrik Ljungberg with a corner kick... he gets a return pass, then crosses to the top of the six... Cavenaghi is there to head it at goal... Vagner deflects it, and Arenas can't quite keep it out.  3-0, Arsenal, as this is quickly becoming a rout.

We again fail to get a point at Emirates Stadium, our 6th straight fruitless trip to this part of London.  I had a secret goal of going totally undefeated in all competitions this year, but that falls by the wayside with this resounding defeat.

Loss, 3-0, drop to 3rd place
Shots/on target: Gunners 12/6, Posh 9/2
Poss: 51-49, Posh
MoM: Arsenal's Jose Antonio Reyes - 9 rating, 1 goal, 1 assist, 3 key passes, 21/23 passing
Posh ratings: Arenas (6), Mascherano (6)
Posh subs: Bellomo (for Mascherano, 45'), Vagner (for Gavilan, 45')
A: 53,106

ManU and Chelsea both pass us, and we slip to 3rd place.

Reserve keeper Ricardo Galo fails to show up for training... I give him a warning.

John Heitinga is named to the Team of the Week.  He is having one hell of a year for us already.  Too bad I don't have 2 of him to play every game... but he's gotta rest sometime.


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Peterborough Utd. - 2012 & beyond - Quad Quest
« Reply #17 on: July 29, 2005, 01:47:13 PM »

We drop to 4th, as Manchester United and Liverpool continue their unbeaten runs to open the season.  

We have a bit of trouble at the club now, as Ricardo Galo complains that my warning for his failure to turn up for training was unfair... I list him, at about half his $3.2 million listed value.  I also notice that Arenas is now unhappy with his contract again... this won't help us win games.  I'll probably have to bump his salary up a good bit yet again.

Sept. 25, Champions League Match Day 2 (TV)
v. Barcelona (beat Dinamo Kiev 3-0 on Match Day 1)
Fav: Barcelona, 6:4

Injured: Sneijder, Kranjcar, Zaccardo
Ineligible: Gerard, Svensson, Sarr, Montolivo
GK: Arenas
D: de la Cuesta, Alex, Marcos, Heitinga
M: Vanden Borre, Mngomeni, Gavilan, Mokoena
S: Wallner, Cole

Barcelona with 2 mildly worrying chances early, but neither force Arenas into action.

15'- Cole gets a loose ball off the clearing header by de la Cuesta... Cole beats one man, then plays a great long ball to Wallner at the edge of the area... Wallner with a dribble, then he shoots at an impossible angle around Victor Valdes... and it bends inside the far post and in!  What a strike by Wallner to give us a 1-0 lead!  That's the goal of the season!

We control play for the remainder of the half...

45'- Wallner with a 50 yard free kick... he bends it to the top of the arc, where Mokoena gets it with a man on his back... Mokoena whirls and hits a blind shot to the right post... Cole shields the keeper a bit, and the shot rings the post... and caroms in!!!  2-0, Posh on another marvelous strike, this one at the stroke of halftime!

48'- FCB doesn't waste much time in the second half... Carlos Tevez wheels on a brilliant free kick and volleys it from 12 yards... it hits the crossbar, and Alex is able to clear out for a corner kick.

50'- Vanden Borre leaves with an injury.

55'- Things go from bad to worse for Barca, as def. middie Thiago Motta draws his 2nd yellow card for chopping down Mokoena... we go a man up.

63'- Carlos Puyol with a throw in near the corner flag... he throws it into the box... Arenas comes out to get it, but he misjudges it, and Carlos Tevez heads it past him and into the open goal... no defenders there to stop the weak header from crossing the line.  Barca with a lifeline, now down just 1.

70'- de la Cuesta is forced to leave with an injury.

85'- After Carlton Cole fails to finish 2 one-on-ones with the keeper, we get the insurance goal we desperately seek... Mngomeni plays ahead to Wallner... Wallner with a great hold-up, then passes to a cutting Mokoena.  Lebohang with a single touch, and it skips low and inside the far post for our third goal of the match.  Just great football there by Wallner and Mokoena.

A dominant performance over one of the European favorites.  A very satisfying win over what should be the 2nd place team from this group.  Ronaldinho was quiet all match.

Win, 3-1, remain 1st in Group E
Shots/on target: Posh 14/10, Barca 5/2
Poss: 55-45, Posh
MoM: Lebohang Mokoena - 2 goals, 4 key passes, 29/34 passing
Posh ratings: Wallner (8), Mngomeni (8), Cole (8), Mokoena (8)
Posh subs: Jesus (for Vanden Borre, 50'), Lazzari (for de la Cuesta, 70')
A: 18,245

After the second matches, only us, Olympiakos, Ajax, and Chelsea have 2 wins in 2 matches from Group Play.

J.J. de la Cuesta picks up a groin strain and will miss 2 weeks, while Vanden Borre just has a bruise that shouldn't see him miss any time at all.


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Peterborough Utd. - 2012 & beyond - Quad Quest
« Reply #18 on: July 29, 2005, 01:49:11 PM »

Does the Barcelona win mean that we're ready to contend in Europe?  We were nearly ready last year, but Bocanegra scored an own goal in our 2 legged quarterfinal against Milan, and that was the only goal of the entire 180 minute affair.  Maybe this year, we can find a way to get over the hump now that we seem to be on our way to cruising into the knockout stages.  A good draw there will be our next key.  A 1st place group finish would help that.

We decide to throw some more money at our 2 most unhappy players: L.A. Arenas, and Thando Mngomeni, both of whom are crying for a new contract.  We up Arenas' base salary by about 3/4 million to $2.2 million and give him another $500k in a bonus.  The board, though, does not want us to re-sign Mngomeni... he wants $2.6 million, and the board will only allow us to offer $1.5 million in salary.  He is turning 30 this year, but I would like to keep him for 2 more years at least.  Don't know if he'll stay at these prices.

Arenas signs his new contract immediately... Mngomeni rejects his.  I could give Thando something like a $2 million bonus to get around the base salary restriction, but I'll wait him out for a little while.

We've slipped to 4th in the standings, but only need a single win to jump back into 1st place.  We have 2 weeks off after this match, and play a few backups today to give a little extra rest to the starters.

Sept. 29, Match 9
4-3-1, 4th pl., 15 pts.
v. Manchester City (3-4-1, 6th pl., 13 pts. - Leading scorer: Jermain Defoe, 7)
Series: Even, 3-3-3, @ London Road: Even, 1-2-1
Fav: Posh, 5:4

Injured: Kranjcar, Zaccardo, de la Cuesta
Unfit: Vanden Borre
GK: Gallacher
D: Lazzari, Bocanegra, Svensson, Gavilan
M: Mascherano, Montolivo, Bellomo, Gerard
S: Jablonski, Vagner

9'- Gallacher looks shaky and slow on a long range shot early, but he gets his old ass over there and tips it away.  You can definitely tell the difference between the catlike Arenas and Gallacher.

30'- Our first decent chance, Montolivo with a free kick on the very edge of the box... he aims it for the far corner, but keeper Robert Green tips it away... but Bellomo is there to follow up past the prone Green!  Bellomo's 1st goal of the year makes it 1-0, Posh.

45+'- During the 2 extra first half minutes, Jablonski gets free on a breakaway thanks to a magic pass from Vagner, but he can't find his way around the keeper... then Adrian Mutu gets free on Gallacher but screams his shot into the side netting.  1-0 at the break.

75'- We move to a 4-5-1 as the Citizens increase the pressure.

We turn the tables and have the better of play for the final quarter hour, and are able to hold our 1-0 win.  Our offense is not quite as prolific as last year's, but we're getting the job done right now.  A grinder of a win, with the only goal off a set piece.

Win, 1-0, return to 1st place
Shots/on target: Posh 21/9, Citizens 9/4
Poss: 55-45, Posh
MoM: Milciades Omar Bellomo - 1 goal, 5 key passes, 5 headers won
Posh ratings: Gallacher (8), Gavilan (8), Bellomo (8), Jablonski (6)
Posh subs: Kargbo (for Jablonski, 75'), Lampard (for Bellomo, 75')
A: 21,090

Brighton with a great start to the season, they pound Sheffield Wednesday 4-0 to move to 12th in the table... very positive start for the newly promoted minnows.


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Peterborough Utd. - 2012 & beyond - Quad Quest
« Reply #19 on: July 29, 2005, 01:49:55 PM »

Man U lose at hom to Portsmouth to drop one of their 3 games in hand on us... but they're still just 2 points behind us.  Liverpool are now the only unbeaten, winning 2-1 at home v. Chelsea.  They pass us into 1st on goal difference.

As October begins, the board continue to be merely "very pleased" with me, as are the fans.  This is quite a step backward from when they've been "absolutely thrilled" with me for the past 2 years.  The only award we contend for this month is Manager of the Month, and I finish 2nd in that voting.

Midfielder Gerard breaks his arm in training, and he'll miss the entire month of October.

Disgruntled reserve keeper Ricardo Galo accepts a 3 month loan spell to 6th place Championship side Nott'm Forest.

Man U with a mid-week win over Villa to vault into 2nd place... Liverpool with a draw against West Ham to increase their lead on us to 1 point.  We're now back level in games played with the league, except for Man U's single game, and we're back to 4th place behind the Reds, the Devils, and the Gunners.

Reserve striker Jim Johansen with 2 more goals in a reserve match, and he's coming back to the senior squad.  Michal Jablonski heads to the reserves.  He won't be happy, but he was pretty awful against Man City, missing 2 free and clear chances that I'm sure Johansen could've finished at least one of.

World Cup Qualifying - Posh roundup
October 6
Carlton Cole (England) - He has his finest game as an international player, opening the scoring, and ultimately netting a hat trick in a 6-0 drubbing of Belgium during which he is named man of the match.
Karl Svensson (Sweden) - A pedestrian 7 in a 3-1 win over Latvia.
Riccardo Montolivo (Italy) - 2 goals, an 8 rating, and MoM honors in a 2-1 win over Belarus.
Michal Jablonski (Poland)- He nets the game winner in the dying seconds, as Poland beat N. Ireland 1-0.
Carlos Bocanegra (USA) - He captains the USA to a 3-0 win over the Reggae Boys.  A 7 rating.
John Heitinga (Holland) - Rough game for the Dutch, they lose to a soft long goal and can't respond.  Heitinga is captain and nets a 7 in the 1-0 loss to Slovakia.
Jan Karsnak (Czech Rep.) - The young midfielder rates a 7 and creates a goal in a 2-0 win over Ukraine.

October 9
Cole - He comes in for a routine sub outing long after England had handed the Faroe Islands their hat.  Another 6-0 win, a 7 for Cole.
Svensson - DNP
Montolivo - Montolivo is named MoM again, setting up Italy's single goal... but the Italians lose 2-1 in Riga, Latvia.
Jablonski - Jablonski with a poor 6 in a chippy 0-0 draw with Austria... 3 red cards between the two sides.
Bocanegra - He earns an 8 as the US breezes to a 2-0 win at T&T.
Heitinga - Heitinga picks up a yellow and an average 7, but his effort not really needed as the Dutch bounce back with a big 4-1 whoopin' of Croatia.
Karsnak - Karsnak with a stellar passing performance, earning an 8 for his midfield play in a 2-1 win over Norway.

October 13
Libis Andres Arenas (Colombia) - A disasterous outing for Arenas, as Colombia are drubbed by Uruguay 4-1.  He still rated a 7, meaning the defense probably had a lot to do with the blow out.
Diego Gavilan (Paraguay) - The 32 year old captains Paraguay to a home 1-0 win over Peru.
Alex (Brazil) - Rates an 8 in Brazil's 1-1 draw with Argentina.
Javier Mascherano (Argentina) - Rates a 7 in the same match.
Ibrahim Kargbo (Sierra Leone) - Kargbo with an assist and an 8 in Sierra Leone's 3-1 win over Congo.
Sarr (Senegal) - An assist, a yellow card, and an 8 as Senegal pound Eritrea 3-0.

October 17
Arenas - A strong showing, as he rates an 8 in Colombia's 2-0 home win over Argentina.
Gavilan - Scores once and gets an 8 as Paraguay all but punch their ticket for the World Cup with a 5-0 beating of Venezuela.
Alex - Alex coasts to a 7 as Brazil beat Bolivia easily 2-0.

We fall further behind on Oct. 13, as Chelsea now pass us, putting us in 5th place... and Manchester United extend their lead over us to 4 points, with both of us on 9 games played.

Riccardo Montolivo approaches me and lets me know he wants to leave us because he's having trouble settling in.  He just had his finest game for us, and has been tearing up World Cup Qualifying.  I'm reluctant to grant a request, especially considering we have 2 other Italians on the team, Andrea Lazzari and Cristian Zaccardo who should be helping to ease the transition.  I'll keep my eye on him.

Arenas is preparting for the Argentina win as our 3rd Champions League match rolls around.

Oct. 16, Champions League Match Day 3 (TV)
v. Dinamo Kiev (0-1-1, 4th pl. in Group E, 1 pt.)
Fav: Posh, Evens

Injured: Gerard, Vanden Borre, Kranjcar, Zaccardo
Int'l duty: Alex, Mascherano, Gavilan, Arenas
Ineligible: Svensson, Johansen, Sarr, Montolivo
GK: Gallacher
D: de la Cuesta, Bocanegra, Marcos, Heitinga
M: Jesus, Mngomeni, Sneijder, Lampard
S: Wallner, Cole

25'- Kiev with the first chance of the game, a 25 yard free kick that Gallacher does well to save.

36'- Cole in a rare appearance on the sideline... he crosses for Lampard, but it's cleared.  Sneijder sends it back to Cole, who crosses far post this time... Roman Wallner is there, and he heads it in!  Perfect delivery and finish, and we take a 1-0 lead!

75'- After a long lull, we get another chance... Sneijder's corner is headed from 10 yards by Lampard... it hits the crossbar, and the attempted clearance spins back into the net for an own goal!  2-0, Posh.

An easy 2-0 win over the Ukrainian powers.

Win, 2-0, remain in 1st in Group
Shots/on target: Posh 18/9, Kiev 3/2
Poss: 51-49, Kiev
MoM: Thando Mngomeni - 8 rating, 3 key passes, 5 headers won
Posh ratings: Gallacher (8), Mngomeni (8)
Posh subs: Karsnak (for Wallner, 72'), Vagner (for Cole, 72')
A: 16,177

Barcelona with a 2-0 road loss at Trabzonspor, so they fall into 3rd place with just 3 pts., and the Turkish side is now 2nd on 4 pts.


  • Suffering from early-onset douchiness
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Peterborough Utd. - 2012 & beyond - Quad Quest
« Reply #20 on: July 29, 2005, 01:56:07 PM »

We finally get back to league action after over 3 weeks off.

Oct. 20, Match 10
5-3-1, 5th pl., 18 pts.
@ Blackburn Rovers (4-2-4, 10th pl., 14 pts. - Leading scorer: Will Johnson, 4)
Series: Even, 4-2-4, @ Ewood Park: Blackburn lead 3-0-2
Fav: Posh, 4:5
Milestone: Carlos Bocanegra's 300th English league appearance

Injured: Vanden Borre, Zaccardo, Gerard
GK: Arenas
D: de la Cuesta, Bocanegra, Marcos, Heitinga
M: Jesus, Montolivo, Gavilan, Mngomeni
S: Johansen, Cole

We are lucky enough to stop not one but two absolute point blank chances off corner kicks in the first 10 minutes... great defensive positioning to stop the shot, but not the header.

16'- After some nifty possession, Thando Mngomeni with a curling left footer that bends right into the top left corner from 25 yards... a marvelous strike, and we take a 1-0 lead.

23'- Bad luck strikes as Marcos deflects a long range shot right into the net behind Arenas.  1-1.

Terrific end to end action, but good saves are keeping it even.

38'- After Arenas snatches down a free kick, he sends a long ball for Cole... Blackburn's defense is caught out with people on the left, and Cole streaks down the right... he outruns everyone, then finishes past Stack for a superb goal!  Cole's 2nd league tally of the year makes it 2-1, Posh.

50'- Occasional transfer target Christopher Eagles with a nice pass to Will Johnson, and the American beats Arenas low and to the near post to make it 2-2.

We hit a bit of a lull, and make a couple of subs for fatigue.

81'- Sub. Wesley Sneijder with a terrific short chip onto Cole's run, and Carlton Cole surprises Graham Stack by shooting first time... and scoring!  Absolute magic by Cole, and we take a late 3-2 lead!

We push Blackburn to the very end and keep them out of our half successfully to take another single goal victory.

Win, 2-3, up to 3rd place
Shots/on target: Rovers 14/7, Posh 19/12
Poss: 52-48, Rovers
MoM: Carlton Cole - 10 rating, 2 goals, 4 key passes, 40/46 passing
Posh ratings: Arenas (8), de la Cuesta (8), Gavilan (8), Montolivo (8), Cole (10), Mngomeni (10)
Posh subs: Sneijder (for Jesus, 64'), Mokoena (for Johansen, 64')
A: 27,500

Chelsea rips Barnsley to stay ahead of us on goal difference for 3rd place.  Man U continue on in 1st, 4 pts. clear of us.  Liverpool win on Monday night to nip back into 2nd.


  • Suffering from early-onset douchiness
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Peterborough Utd. - 2012 & beyond - Quad Quest
« Reply #21 on: July 29, 2005, 01:57:10 PM »

Vagner breaks his collarbone in training, and will miss a month of action.

Mngomeni and Cole are selected to the Team of the Week.

Jesus strains his groin, and will miss about 2 weeks.

The media asks me if we can beat Bury... I give the tired old magnanimous "yes, but we'll have to play well" crap.

I check out my manager stats, and notice that my reputation has now reached "World Class" status.

Oct. 24, League Cup Third Round
v. Bury (8th in League Two)
Fav: Posh, 1:20

Never before have we been so large a favorite.  We beat Bury once 8 years ago, in a pre-season friendly 4-1... and that was back when we sucked.

GK: Gallacher
D: de la Cuesta, Svensson, Sarr, Gavilan
M: Kargbo, Lazzari, Bellomo, Lampard
S: Johansen, Karsnak

Frank Lampard runs rings around Bury during the first 20 minutes... but 2 headers from corners are saved, and one 20 yard shot is tipped onto the post, and barely cleared off the line.

Then Bury settles down, and we're scoreless at halftime despite holding 65% of the possession.

Mokoena on for Karsnak at the break to inject some life into the offense.  And we up our attack.

50'- Bellomo heads a goal kick back toward the Bury end... Mokoena runs onto it, past a defender, then nearly blasts a hole in the keeper and the net with a ferocious strike... it's in!  1-0, Posh.  Mokoena's skill is no match against a tiring Bury bunch.

70'- After an easy save, Gallacher launches a long ball to Lazzari down the left... he simply outraces the defense, and shoots... his first shot is stopped, but he forces the rebound past the keeper and in for his first Posh goal.  2-0.

74'- For good measure, Frank Lampard scores on a direct 25 yard free kick to make it 3-0.  Also his first Posh goal.

75'- Things go from bad to worse for Bury, as they lose a defender to his second yellow for dissension.

We hit 2 posts in the final quarter hour, but settle for a 3-0 margin of victory.

Win, 3-0, advance to League Cup Fourth Round
Shots/on target: Posh 29/16, Bury 1/1
Poss: 63-37, Posh
MoM: Milciades Omar Bellomo - 10 rating, 1 assist, 4 key passes
Posh ratings: Gavilan (8), Johansen (8), Lampard (8), Mokoena (8), Bellomo (10), Lazzari (9)
Posh subs: Mokoena (for Karsnak, 46')
A: 8,044

Everton with a surprise win over Arsenal 1-0 in Emirates Stadium is probably the surprise of the Third Round.  We pick up $52k for the win here.


  • Suffering from early-onset douchiness
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Peterborough Utd. - 2012 & beyond - Quad Quest
« Reply #22 on: September 14, 2005, 12:38:40 PM »

This dynasty will be returning soon.... so, the 2 of you big readers of it will have to brush up on your Posh facts to prepare for our glorious return!

But first, I have to remind myself just what the hell my long term plans were for all these quality players.


  • Future Boy
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Peterborough Utd. - 2012 & beyond - Quad Quest
« Reply #23 on: September 14, 2005, 12:50:05 PM »

Ah ha ha...good deal. I look forward to the resumption.

I'm busy right now trying to get Scotland qualified for the World Cup. Talk about a long term project.
"I believe that in the long view of history, the British Empire will be remembered only for two things. The game of football, and the expression 'fuck off.'" - Sir Richard Turnbull


  • Tetris Master
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Peterborough Utd. - 2012 & beyond - Quad Quest
« Reply #24 on: September 14, 2005, 04:41:34 PM »

You were going for the Quad, I believe.  At least, that's what you announced to the public.  Maybe in private you were hoping to hump them individually, but I don't really know anything about that.


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« Reply #25 on: September 16, 2005, 04:44:57 PM »

We hit a bit of a soft spot on our schedule now, with the only real tough game in the next month or so being a visit to Liverpool.

The Fourth Round League Cup draw is made, and we'll face our next opponent on the road, on November 7th at Selhurst Park... it just so happens to be the same team visiting London Road today.

Oct. 27, Match 11
6-3-1, 4th pl., 21 pts.
v. Crystal Palace (3-2-5, 15th pl., 11 pts. - Leading scorer: Collins John, 7)
Series: Posh lead 4-4-2, @ London Road: Posh lead 3-2-1
Fav: Posh, 4:6

Injured: Zaccardo, Vagner, Jesus, Gerard, Vanden Borre
GK: Arenas
D: Bocanegra, Alex, Marcos, Sarr
M: Mascherano, Mngomeni, Sneijder, Karsnak
S: Wallner, Cole

We go with aggressive attacking tactics at home to try and put the Eagles away early.

5'- Works like a charm early, as Marcos heads a goal kick forward to Cole... Cole finds Wallner with some room in the middle... he tees up from 20 yards, and the shot hits a boot and goes in past the wrong-footed keeper.  1-0, Posh.

We dominate play for the next half hour, forcing Palace into a shell.

31'- Bocanegra with a long throw into the box... Karsnak with a great directional header sneaks it in past Gabor Kiraly to make it 2-0.  Karsnak's first senior goal with the Posh.

We switch to our standard defensive counter-attacking posture after the interval.  We held nearly 60% of the ball in the first half.  

64'- Marcos' long ball into the box finds Cole, but he's pushed over and the penalty is given... defender Alex takes it, and Kiraly guesses right and makes a great fingertip save at the left post.  

It ends 2-0, but easily could've been 3-0.  A solid home win.

Win, 2-0, up to 3rd place
Shots/on target: Posh 18/12, Palace 8/3
Poss: 53-47, Posh
MoM: Roman Wallner - 1 goal, 4 shots on goal, 2 key passes
Posh ratings: Arenas (8), Bocanegra (8), Wallner (8), Mngomeni (8), Karsnak (8)
Posh subs: Kargbo (for Cole, 71'), Kranjcar (for Wallner, 71'), Montolivo (for Sneijder, 71')
A: 16,381

We're now 4 points back of ManU and level on games played with them... we're also even on points with Chelsea, but hold a game in hand on them.


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« Reply #26 on: September 16, 2005, 04:45:33 PM »

Southampton fire manager Mark Hughes, not a surprise considering the Saints are in 17th place after 10 games played, earning just 9 points in those 10 matches.

Bocanegra and Wallner are picked to the Team of the Week.

Ibrahim Kargbo fails to turn up for training... I warn the 30 year old defensive midfielder, and he agrees to improve his behavior.

17 Posh players are called up to their respective international squads for friendlies in mid-November.  

Recently returned from injury Anthony Vanden Borre suffers another setback, fracturing a rib in practice.  He'll miss another 3 weeks, and our bad luck with defensive midfielders continues.

Oct. 31, Champions League Match Day 4 (TV)
@ Dinamo Kiev (last in Group E with 1 point)
Pvs. meeting: Posh 2:0 Kiev, in last Champions League match
Fav: Posh, Evens

Injured: Zaccardo, Vanden Borre, Vagner, Jesus, Lazzari
Ineligible: Gerard, Svensson, Johansen, Sarr, Montolivo
GK: Arenas
D: de la Cuesta, Alex, Marcos, Heitinga
M: Kargbo, Sneijder, Gavilan, Lampard
S: Mokoena, Bellomo

10'- Great long ball down the left by Marcos to Mokoena... he turns on his man, waits for support, and crosses to the back post... Kargbo with a powerful header that is tipped away... but Bellomo is in perfect position to clean up things and earn a goal!  1-0, Posh.

31'- Kiev with their finest chance of the opening 45, as a corner kick to the near post is flicked onto goal, but Arenas' great reflexes keep the ball out of the net.

69'- Lampard with a nice steal of a throw in, he gets it back to Kargbo... several midfield passes later, Lampard is free from 30 yards, and has time to pick out Bellomo at the corner of the area... Bellomo wheels on his man, beats him cleanly, then fires it past the Kiev keeper!  Great goal to give us a 2-0 lead.

89'- Kiev pull one back, as Arenas stops one shot, but the rebound from a tough angle hits Alex's leg and goes in.

Luckily for us, that's it and we take 3 more points on the road in the Champions League.  

Win, 2-1, advance to Knockout Stages
Shots/on target: Kiev 9/5, Posh 17/13
Poss: 55-45, Kiev
MoM: Milciades Omar Bellomo - 2 goals
Posh ratings: Heitinga (8), de la Cuesta (8), Kargbo (8), Bellomo (8)
Posh subs: Mngomeni (for Sneijder, 46')
A: 16,829

We join Chelsea, Roma, Inter, and Olympiakos as early qualifiers into the First Knockout Stages of the Champions League.

We pick up another $400k for our match win over Kiev.


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« Reply #27 on: September 16, 2005, 04:46:30 PM »

As November begins, the board and fans both are merely "pleased" with my performance, despite early qualification out of the Group Stages in the Champions League, and sitting 4th in the Premiership, just 4 points adrift of the Red Devils.

A big early season game for us next, as we visit 5th place Liverpool.  A loss would put us out of the top 4, and maybe put just the teensiest bit of heat on the team to perform.  Liverpool are the only unbeaten side remaining in the Premiership, thanks to a stout defense that has yielded just 6 goals in 11 league tilts.

Nov. 4, Match 12
7-3-1, 4th pl., 24 pts.
@ Liverpool (6-5-0, 5th pl., 23 pts. - Leading scorer: Djibril Cisse, 5)
Series: Even, 3-2-3, @ New Anfield: Liverpool lead 2-1-1
Fav: Reds, 5:4
Milestones: Arenas - 100th Posh start, Cole - 200th league appearance, Gerrard - needs 1 goal for 50 career for Liverpool

Injured: Zaccardo, Vanden Borre, Vagner, Alex, Mngomeni, Jesus, Gerard
GK: Arenas
D: de la Cuesta, Marcos, Bocanegra, Heitinga
M: Gavilan, Montolivo, Sneijder, Kranjcar
S: Wallner, Cole

34'- After Arenas made 2 good saves on long range shots from Shaun Wright-Phillips and Kim Kallstrom, we get a break on the other end, as Montolivo sends a masterful long ball right to the toe of Carlton Cole... Cole gets keeper Chris Kirkland to commit, then lofts it over him from 12 yards and scores!  Cole's 4th league goal of the season gives us the 1-0 lead!

38'- A loose ball in midfield is picked up by Cole... Cole totally baffles Steven Gerrard, and gets in free!  Cole lobs it over Kirkland again... and scores!  Cole with a vintage first half singlehandedly gives us a 2-0 lead!

64'- Right as we're readying some defensive subs, Liverpool pulls back a goal... sub. Cesar Delgado sends in a near post cross to young striker Luke Grant, who heads it past Arenas to cut it to 2-1.

We switch to a 4-5-1, putting in another defensive midfielder in place of Roman Wallner, who is tiring.

78'- Grant busts through our back line... Arenas is able to block his shot wide... Delgado with the follow-up chance, but Arenas gets over to deflect that as well!  Great goalkeeping.

Liverpool get one more chance, but Ashley Cole strays offside to end the chance, and the final whistle goes on the restart.  A huge road win to move us up the table!  Arenas was spectacular today, making at least 4 world class saves, while Cole was our entire offense.  But today, that was enough.

Win, 2-1, move up to 2nd
Shots/on target: Reds 11/9, Posh 5/3
Poss: 54-46, Rreds
MoM: Libis Andres Arenas - 8 saves
Posh ratings: Arenas (10), Heitinga (8), de la Cuesta (8), Cole (8), Montolivo (8)
Posh subs: Karsnak (for Sneijder, 64'), Lazzari (for Wallner, 64'), Mokoena (for Cole, 80')
A: 52,880

Man U easily dispatch West Ham at home, so we remain 4 points back, but we pass Chelsea and Arsenal into 2nd place.


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« Reply #28 on: September 16, 2005, 04:47:01 PM »

Former Barnsley, Reading, and Watford manager Mark Wright is hired on at Southampton.

No rest for the weary, as we travel to London to face Crystal Palace.  We do get a 10 day spell off after this match, however.  So I guess there IS rest for the weary.

Arenas and Heitinga are picked to the Team of the Week.

This is a League Cup matchup, so it is vital in our Quest for the Quad.  With rest coming on the other side of this match, I send out the first teamers.  Well, as many as I can considering this is just a 2 day rest period.

Nov. 7, League Cup Fourth Round (TV)
@ Crystal Palace (16th in Premiership)
Series: Posh lead 5-4-2, @ Selhurst Park: Even, 1-2-1
Fav: Posh, 4:6

Injured: Zaccardo, Vanden Borre, Alex, Gerard, Jesus, Vagner
GK: Arenas
D: de la Cuesta, Sarr, Svensson, Kargbo
M: Mascherano, Lazzari, Bellomo, Lampard
S: Johansen, Mokoena

2'- Mokoena crosses to the middle into a thoroughly confused Eagle defense... Johansen with no one near him from 10 yards, has time to settle the ball, but he hits it right at keeper Gabor Kiraly.

10'- Johansen tees up a 30 yard shot out of nothing... and it hits a defender and trickles in behind the keeper!  Weird goal, but I'll take it.  1-0, Posh.

36'- Bellomo with a great run down the right... he cuts it inside to Mokoena, who lays it back further for Lampard... Lampard with an open 15 yard shot, but he unselfishly passes to his right to Andrea Lazzari.... Lazzari with a quick left-footed strike that beats Kiraly!  2-0, Posh!  Lampard with some more quality team play to give us a 2 goal cushion.

42'- Palace pull themselves back into the match with a nice header in off a corner kick.  These corners have been giving us all sorts of problems.  2-1.

45+'- Lazzari is down injured, meanwhile Palace play on and attack our goal, nearly scoring a 2nd while Lazzari lays prone near the top of the box.  We take a 2-1 lead into the locker room.

Karsnak enters for Lazzari, and Sarr and Kargbo switch places, with Kargbo moving to center back and Sarr to right fullback.

55'- We get some breathing room again, as Karsnak passes inside to Johansen... Johansen crosses far post... Kiraly tips the cross, but can't stop it from getting to Bellomo, who has an easy tap in for a 3-1 lead!

89'- We appear to get the clincher as Karsnak with a great cross to Mokoena, who heads it in... but Lebohang pulled his man to the ground to gain some space, so it's called back.

Either way, we're moving on.

Win, 1-3, advance to League Cup Quarterfinals
Shots/on target: Eagles 18/5, Posh 10/7
Poss: 54-46, Eagles
MoM: Milciades Omar Bellomo - 1 goal, 1 assist, 7/10 headers won, 6/11 tackles won, 5 key passes
Posh ratings: Kargbo (8), Sarr (8), de la Cuesta (8), Svensson (8), Johansen (8), Bellomo (10), Mascherano (8), Lampard (9)
Posh subs: Karsnak (for Lazzari, 45')
A: 22,822

Lazzari's injury is not serious, and he should be ready for our next match if needed.


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« Reply #29 on: September 16, 2005, 04:47:51 PM »

Riccardo Montolivo decides to skip out on training since he's having a tough time "adjusting".  I give him one warning before I start fining his ass.  He decides my warning is unfair, and now he pretty much wants out.  He's valued at $29 million, but he has had some flashes of brilliance that make me reluctant to sell him.  Still, he's probably outta here pretty soon.

We get a big road block on our way to the Quad... our Quarterfinal League Cup draw is made, and we have to visit Old Trafford and beat Man U to advance.  No, we couldn't draw away at Leicester, Bolton, or even League 1 Yeovil... we get the hardest team left, on the road.  This game will be on November 28th, so it's coming up fairly soon.

Ibrahim Kargbo decides to turn up absent from training as well, so he gets a one week fine, which he accepts as fair.

We still can't get Thando Mngomeni back on the pitch... he dislocates his jaw in a South African friendly vs. Romania, and will probably be out until around the start of December.

We have 3 kinda blah games in our runup to the League Cup Quarters.... home to Brighton and Trabzonspor, then on the road at cellar dwellars Barnsley.  Hopefully, we can guard against the let down and go into Old Trafford on a roll.

The Seagulls feature former Posh-hand Lamine Traore in central defense... he's playing well on the South Coast, rating over a 7.1 so far this year.

Nov. 17, Match 13
8-3-1, 2nd pl., 27 pts.
v. Brighton and Hove Albion (4-3-6, 13th pl., 15 pts. - Leading scorer: Jean Beausejour, 4)
Series: Posh lead 2-0-0
Fav: Posh, 1:2

Injured: Gerard, Mngomeni, Vanden Borre, Zaccardo, Vagner
GK: Gallacher
D: Lazzari, Marcos, Alex, Gavilan
M: Jesus, Montolivo, Bellomo, Lampard
S: Johansen, Cole

After a half hour of some pretty boring football, I decide to put the fire to the minnows and attack.  

43'- Sadly, this backfires, as Jean Beausejour breaks the trap, crosses to the far post where left winger Kris Commons hits a sweet volley past Gallacher into the back of the net to put Brighton up 1-0 at the break.

We switch to a 3-4-3 for the second half.

A slow start to the second half, but we eventually get rolling.

57'- Johansen with a great cross to the back post to a streaking Bellomo, but he puts a little too much on the header and it flies over the bar.

59'- Gavilan with a corner kick into the near post... Jesus charges onto it and heads it into the net!  Jesus' second ever senior goal for the Posh, and we tie it up!

77'- Alex with a long free kick... he drops it into the box for Johansen, who lays it off for Jesus... Jesus has a go from 15 yards... the shot takes a deflection and goes in!  Jesus with his first 2 goals of the year in the same match, and we lead it 2-1!

83'- Bellomo with some nice play, beating his man, then laying it off for Karsnak... Karsnak's shot is charged down, but the ball runs free to Bellomo, who powers it in from a tight angle for his 5th of the year!  3-1, Posh.  Bellomo is growing into one of the finest players on the squad.

88'- Mokoena with a perfectly placed header makes it 4 Posh tallies in the second half to end the Brighton upset attempt.

The final whistle goes, and we take home a 4-1 win thanks to a stellar final 45 minutes on the offensive end of the field.  Jim Johansen with a fine game today, netting 2 assists on our 4 goals.

Win, 4-1, remain in 2nd
Shots/on target: Posh 24/10, Gulls 5/2
Poss: 61-39, Posh
MoM: Milciades Omar Bellomo - 1 goal, 4 shots on target, 4 key passes
Posh ratings: Bellomo (9), Jesus (9), Johansen (8), Mokoena (8)
Posh subs: Mokoena (for Lazzari, 45'), Karsnak (for Montolivo, 45')
A: 21,091

Man U with a 2-0 road win at Sheffield Wednesday to keep their 4 point margin over us.  We now have 3 points over 3rd place Arsenal, and 5 over 4th place Chelsea.
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