Florence And The Goal Machine (4.0) Who Are We 2021-2022

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Welcome to the latest post of my FM19 save with Fiorentina. We are entering the fourth season on the back of winning the Scudetto after the clubs 52 year wait since winning the title back in 1969. The 2021-2022 season promises to be an interesting season with Pep Guardiola replacing Zinedine Zidane at Juventus, Jose Mourinho replacing Carlo Ancelotti at Napoli and Marcelo Bielsa already at Atalanta, the entertainment value is about to increase.

A little bit different this post I decided to knock up a few graphics and show you who will be wearing the Viola shirt this season plus I have added the tactic that I have developed and that led us to the title last season after a number of requests however I can’t stress enough that I can’t guarantee that it will work with your club so if you do decide to try it don’t expect miracles.

I would love to finish on top of the pile again consolidating our position within the Italian game. We also have a Champions League campaign to look forward to so preperation for the new season got underway just 24 hours after the season came to a climax back in May.

The board expectations are to qualify for Europe whilst advancing to the first knockout round of the Champions League were we have drawn Borussia Dortmund, AS Monaco and Galatasaray, a tasty group to look forward to.

We have had a few departure’s including first team squad players Marco Benassi and German Pezzella. Benassi was looking to start more games something that I could not guarantee with Abdou Diakhate being my first choice in the box to box midfield role. Ideally I wanted Benassi to stay and challenge Diakhate for a place but I can see Benassi’s frustration because he is a good player and needs to be playing so I negotiated a deal with Internazionale of £30m that will see the midfielder join Federico Chiesa at the Giuseppe Meazza.

German Pezzella was another player who I would have happily kept but again he was now back up for Gianluca Mancini and Alessandro Bastoni my first choice  centre backs. The Argentine defender was subject to a bid from Boca Juniors of which he expressed his desire to speak to them so I granted his wish. I said in a previous post that I won’t stand in any players way if they want to leave.

Boca Juniors met Pezzella’s personal terms so the Argentine defender moved to Boca for £6m. I also decided to say goodbye to both Riccardo Sottil and Gabrielle Gori, both players have struggled to break in to the first team so it was only right for me to let them have a go at making the grade elsewhere.


Barella Arrives in Florence 

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With the departure of Marco Benassi for £30m I decided to go after one of my long time targets Cagliari’s midfielder Nicolò Barella. The Sardinian Barella is a product of Cagliari’s youth development system and adds quality to our Midfield in a season that will see us compete in the Champions League. I have followed Barella from season one to see how he developed and was surprised that nobody made a move for him until now when AS Roma shown an interest it was the right time for me to go and get him. With Barella coming in to the squad it gives us good quality rotational options for the season ahead. Barella joins us for an initial £27m rising to £31m with add ons.

An Argentinian Rolls In 

Argentinian Inside Forward Benjamín Rollheiser joins up with the first team squad img_20190122_075022after I signed him during the winter transfer window last season after triggering his £9.5m release clause at River Plate. Rollheiser is the latest in a string of Argentinians to ply his trade in Florence. I had decided that Riccardo Sottil was not at the level I need to play in rotation with Domenico Berardi. I believe Rollheiser can become a useful member of our club with the best years ahead of him. Florence likes a good Argentine and we could see both flanks being occupied by our South American connection with Maximiliano Romero set to continue his new role of Inside Forward on the left side of our attack.

Cozza Replaces Pezzella 

img_20190122_075029Our third and final signing of the transfer window is the loan signing of Central Defender Nicolas Cozza from Montpellier. Cozza comes in to the squad to back up Mancini and Bastoni along with Ceccherini after the departure of German Pezzella to Boca Juniors. The French Defender is on a season long loan with an option to make the deal permanent. Cozza could just be a rough diamond in the waiting that could blossom in our squad. A versatile player who for a defender also has an eye for a goal with a finishing attribute of 13, Cozza can play the Libero role which may just come in handy in giving us a different dimension to our system going forward.


First Team Squad 2021-2022 

Goalkeepers 

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(SK) Alban Lafont 🇫🇷 : Our number one keeper between the sticks, Lafont is blossoming in to one of the best keepers in the World and deservedly so, the French keeper as been a rock for our defensive unit from day 1 of my time in Florence. The attacking players usually get the credit for our victories but Lafont is instrumental in our success. I see Lafont being France’s number 1 for years to come. I will be opening contract negotiations in the near future hoping that we can keep the French stopper for years to come.

Age: 22
Contract: June 2024
Fiorentina League Record: 112 App -96 Goals


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(SK) Bartlomiej Dragowski 🇵🇱 : Our back up keeper and despite my staff telling me that he is surplus to requirements I am quite happy to keep the Polish stopper in Florence for at least another season. Dragowski when called upon as performed very well and as been unlucky that Lafont is the man ahead of him. I am sure Dragowski will get more games when he does leave the club but until that day I am more than happy to see the big man stay. With the Champions League campaign ahead of us it is likely that Dragowski will see more game time especially in the Coppa.

Age: 24
Contract: June 2024
Fiorentina League Record: 10 App -3 Goals


Defenders 

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(WB) Claud Adjapong 🇮🇹 : Our first choice right sided wing back in his second season in Florence after joining from Sassuolo for an initial £10m. Adjapong had a solid season for us making 34 appearances at an average rating of 7.32 contributing 1 goal and 7 goals. Adjapong recently signed a new contract that keeps at the club until 2026 which is good news for the club.

Age: 23
Contract: June 2026
Fiorentina League Record: 32 App 0 Goals


 

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(WB) Kevin Diks 🇱🇺 : Back up right wing back, Diks can be relied upon to come in to the first eleven and perform at the required level that I expect. Diks is a quality player that I have come to rely on during my reign at the club. I am pretty sure that with a Champions League campaign to manoeuvre this season Diks will add to his appearance record in Florence.

Age: 24
Contract: June 2024
Fiorentina League Record: 54 App 0 Goals

 

 


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(BPD) Gianluca Mancini 🇮🇹 : Swopped Bergamo for Florence last season for an initial  £15m with add ons taking the fee up to a possible £20m. Money well spent with the central defender making 43 appearances at a rating of 7.17. Mancini is no stranger to Florence after being at the club in the youth ranks.

Age: 25
Contract: June 2026
Fiorentina League Record: 39 App 0 Goals


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(CD) Alessandro Bastoni 🇮🇹 : A product of the Atalanta development system Bastoni joined us last season from Internazionale for £10.5m rising to £13m with add ons. Our first choice central defender along with Mancini, Bastoni had a good solid first season in Florence despite picking up a back injury making 35 appearances at a rating of 7.29

Age: 22
Contract: June 2025
Fiorentina League Record: 31 App 2 Goals


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(BPD) Nicolas Cozza 🇫🇷 : Signed on loan from Montpellier in the summer to replace German Pezzella in the squad to offer a quality back up at the centre of our defence with an option to join us permanently if we desire.

Age: 22
Contract: June 2022 Loan
Fiorentina League Record: 0 App 0 Goals


 

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(CD) Federico Ceccherini 🇮🇹 : Back up central defender Ceccherini has been a credit to himself and the club accepting his status within the first team with grace. Limited to just 8 appearances last season at a rating of 7.41 the Italian is probably in his last season at the club

Age: 29
Contract: June 2022
Fiorentina League Record: 18 App 1 Goals


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(WB) Luca Ranieri 🇮🇹 : The young full back is really making the most of his inclusion in the first team squad. Ranieri made 33 appearances last season scoring 3 goals and 6 assists at an average rating of 7.27 which is a really good return from him after taking his chance coming in for the injured Biraghi.

Age: 22
Contract: June 2026
Fiorentina League Record: 34 App 2 Goals


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(WB) Cristiano Biraghi 🇮🇹 : What can I say about Biraghi, Mr dependable and a true leader and professional in our changing room. Unfortunately Biraghi was blighted by injury last season but he performed exceptionally when called upon. Biraghi still with two years left on his contract can contribute in our search for more silverware. Without a shadow of a doubt Biraghi is one of my favourite players in the save so far and with over 100 league appearances for the club he will surely be a fans favourite.

Age: 29
Contract: June 2024
Fiorentina League Record: 108 App 2 Goals


Midfield 

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(HB) / (DLP) Manuel Locattelli 🇮🇹 : My record signing from U.S Sassuolo for £33m, Locattelli is our Sergio Busquets type player. Like El Pivote himself Locattelli is the heartbeat of our team in the Half Back role he is simply a World Class Midfielder and a master of time and space. When on the ball Locattelli plays simple passes whilst making himself available for a return pass at any given time. His quality in the Half Back role gives our Wing Backs a licence to push forward dropping in to the defensive line to make a back 3 and open up more passing angles Locatelli had a pass succes rate of 93% last season making 33 appearances at a rating of 7.10.

Age: 23
Contract: June 2025
Fiorentina League Record: 30 App 0 Goals


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(HB) / (DLP) Christian Nørgaard 🇩🇰 : A quality option in our midfield, the Dane had 14 starts last season along with 18 substitute appearances at an average rating of 7.04 shows how much he contributed to our title winning season as a squad player. The Danish midfielder is now in the last year of his contract and I am yet to decide if I will open contract talks with him due to having a couple of young Violets in the Under 20 squad ready to step up. It will be nice to see the Dane reach 100 League appearances for us this coming season.

Age: 27
Contract: June 2022
Fiorentina League Record: 92 App 3 Goals


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(BBM) Abdou Diakhate 🇸🇳 : A player who I put my faith in from the first time I set my foot in to the club and he didn’t let me down. The Senegalese midfielder kept both Marco Benassi and Jordan Veretout on the bench during his time at the club. I have come to rely on Diakhate in the big games and it’s no coincidence that the tough midfielder is already at the 100 league appearances mark,

Age: 22
Contract: June 2025
Fiorentina League Record: 100 App 11 Goals


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(MEZ) / (DLP) / (HB)  Sandro Tonali 🇮🇹 : Joined us at the start of season two from Brescia after we aquired him in the January 2019 transfer window but we loaned him straight back to Brescia for the rest of the season. Tonali’s natural position his in the Defensive midfield strata in Deep Lying Playmaker role but I am using him in the Mezzala role and occasionally he can cover in the  DM strata. Tonali will eventually be our Deep Lying Playmaker or Half Back depending on how things go during the coming season with the playing staff ect. Tonali is also on the wanted list of a lot of Europe’s top clubs. Last season saw Tonali make 33 appearances scoring 7 goals and 5 assists with an average rating of  7.26

Age: 21
Contract: June 2025
Fiorentina League Record: 61 App 8 Goals


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(MEZ) Alessandro Cortinovis 🇮🇹 :  The first player that I made an offer for after taking the reigns at the Franchi. Cortinovis is another one of the Bergamo boys dripping with talent. The boy from Bergamo is developing well and posted a good return from 25 appearances last season scoring  6 goals and produinģ 3 assists. Cortinovis could well be approaching his breakout season in Serie A this season.

Age: 20
Contract: June 2024
Fiorentina League Record: 44 App 4 Goals


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(BBM) / ( MEZ) Nicolò Barella 🇮🇹 : Barella a new signing from Cagliari this summer adds to an already quality midfield. Barella arrives from Sardinia with a big reputation and now he will get the chance to perform on the Champions League stage. Barella is a player who I have had an eye on for a few years and his addition to the squad is an absolute positive for the club going forward.

Age: 24
Contract: June 2025
Fiorentina League Record: 0 App 0 Goals

 


Forwards

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(IF) Rafik Zekhnini 🇳🇴 : The flying Norwegian is more than an handful playing in the left Inside Forward role with his tricky dribbling skills cutting in off the flank. Zekhnini will be keen to continue his development this season after injury problems along with Maximiliano Romero’s emergence on the left last season saw the Norwegian play second fiddle to the Argentine despite returning 7 goals and 6 assists last term.

Age: 23
Contract: June 2025
Fiorentina League Record: 50 App 12 Goals


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(IF) / (CF) / (F9) Maximiliano Romero 🇦🇷 : Signed from PSV Eindhoven in July 2019 the young Argentine was instrumental in us winning the title last season. Maxi deputised for Zekhnini on the left flank in the Inside Forward role and had an absolute banger scoring 23 goals in all competitions last season picking up the fans player of the year award, the Viola tifosi have taken young Maxi to their hearts already. With Romero now showing his ability to switch roles it will give me quality options going forward

Age: 22
Contract: June 2025
Fiorentina League Record: 57 App 23 Goals


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(CF) / (F9) Patrick Cutrone 🇮🇹 : Signed for the club from Milan for £20m  after the departure of Giovanni Simone at the end of the 18/19 season and I have to say it was money well spent. Cutrone is the focal point of our attack. With 36 league goals already netted Cutrone should be the first player to hit 50 goals for me in the league. I think when you look back now I really think we robbed Milan in getting Cutrone for £20m

Age: 23
Contract: June 202
Fiorentina League Record: 67 App 36 Goals


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(CF) / (F9) Dejan Joveljic 🇷🇸 : The young Serbian Forward will be looking to continue his development this season after scoring the opening goal in the title win against Milan last season. The Dreamweaver looks to have a bright future in front of him and can claim a stake for a starting place in the near future.

Age: 22
Contract: June 2024
Fiorentina League Record: 16 App 3 Goals

 


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(CF) / (F9) Fabio Gentile 🇮🇹 : The young Italian forward is the first Newgen to make it in to our first team squad and what a player Gentile could become. Young Fabio will be made available for our Under 20 squad but my intension is to introduce him in to Serie A football by first giving him a run out in the Coppa Italia. Gentile did make an handful of substitute appearances for us last season but a good run of games under his belt will give the talented forward chance to develop to the World of Italian Football. I have big hopes of Gentile and one to watch whilst the save develops.

Age: 18
Contract: June 2025
Fiorentina League Record: 5 App 0 Goals


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(IF) Domenico Berardi 🇮🇹 : After taking a season to get settled at the club Berardi was on fire last season scoring 21 goals in all competitions last season with 10 assists to boot the Italian attacker was instrumental in us winning the title. It will be interesting to see if the arrival of Benjamin Rollheiser will spur Berardi on to perform even better this season.

Age: 27
Contract: June 2024
Fiorentina League Record: 57 App 25 Goals


img_20190122_075022(IF) Benjamín Rollheiser 🇦🇷 : Joined us in the summer from River Plate the Argentine comes with loads of potential that gives us a quality option behind Berardi. Keeping the Viola – Argentine connection going Rollheiser is well respected in South America and I was really pleased to be able to add him to our squad in the summer.

Age: 21
Contract: June 2026
Fiorentina League Record: 0 App 0 Goals


The Viola 433

A few people have asked for the details of the system that I am using with Fiorentina and whilst I don’t mind sharing it I must stress that if you are looking for a wonder tactic aka a plug and play that will get you instant results then you are in the wrong place. The system below is a result of 3 seasons tweaking and analysing whilst training players and recruiting players to fit in to the system. I don’t use any set piece instructions so you won’t see the long throw or short corner kick routines it’s all set on default. Feel free to use the system but if your team gets relegated using it or you get the sack then I apologise in advance.

tactic

I have to say the system that I am using is producing really good football by building from the back focusing the play through the middle creating width via our Wing Backs that allows me to play with two Inside Forwards who can come inside and take advantage of the movement of either a Complete Forward or False 9.

Our midfield three is made up of an Half Back, Box To Box Midfielder and a Mezzala. The Half Back whilst watching games back is a joy to watch dropping in between the central defenders allowing the wing backs to really push on, whilst we are in possession he becomes available for a pass so many times he becomes the heartbeat of the team stroking the ball around.

Team Instructions 

See above (All team instructions in the screenshot above along with player roles)

Individual Player Instructions 

Sweeper Keeper – Distribute To Full Backs – Distribute To Central Defenders

Wing Backs – Stay Wider

BPD – Default

CD – Default

BBM – Default

MEZ – Default

IF – Default

CF / F9 – Default

Set Pieces 

All Default

Opposition Instructions 

All Wide Players Show On To Weaker Foot

Forward Players Hard Tackle


New Kit Design

We will be wearing a new kit design this season thanks to @Redesign_FM. I wanted the shirts to incorporate both the Scudetto Shield and the nostalgic Nintendo sponsor. I think all three shirts look quality.

Home Shirt 

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Away Shirt 

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Third Shirt 

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Florence And The Goal Machine : The Story So Far 

2020-2021 Serie A 1st Place /  (Manager Of The Year)

2019-2020 Serie A 5th Place / Coppa Italia Runners Up

2018-2019 Serie A 3rd Place / (Manager Of The Year)

Arriverderci

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