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[OC] What if every world cup team had the same population? - Group C

Hello again all, trying to distract myself from the fact that it’s already May, I’ve put my matching Friday pants and socks set on to bring you another edition of the alternative World Cup. For those of you who are unfamiliar with the premise of this series why not indulge yourself in the last two groups.
Group A, Group B
Whilst yesterday featured a group with sprinkles of quality throughout, I’m afraid to say this gathering is a little one-sided. One African team dwarfs three squads of an Asian persuasion, so with more utopian island spots than full time pro’s on display, I’ll try my utmost not to drift into a Thomas Cook holiday blog, no promises though.
Group C
West Africa
Togo, Ghana, Côte d'Ivoire, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Guinea, Guinnea Bissau, Senegal, The Gambia, Mauritania, Mali, Burkina Faso, Western Sahara, Algeria, Morrocco
Population (millions): 240.19
When it comes to brainchildren it’s strongly advised not to have favourites, but between you and me this is the funnest squad of the lot.
Similarly to Eastern Europe, West Africa has often been a hive of sporting talent restrained by the labyrinth of borders within its confines. George Weah, Emmanuel Adebayor, Yaya Toure, Didier Drogba and Abedi Pele are some notable stars of the past, but the conveyor belt of sporadic world-class attacking talent over the last 30 years appears to have crescendoed into a full blown production line of stars in every outfield position.
Something that my hypothesis can’t fairly simulate is what affect an open plan Africa would have on the decision making of some of our games Euro-Africano elite. N’Golo Kante is of Malean descent whilst fellow Parisian Paul Pogba boasts his Guinean parentage. It would be a safe bet to assume at least some juggling would take place with the region's newfound affluence, but until I am able to read the minds of millionaire athletes I’m not going to touch the subject with a barge pole, besides I think I’d go for the sort codes well before I look at their national preference.
What we DO have however is a terrific squad on paper that will continue to improve as the years continue, with 17 year old Barcelona wunderkind Ansu Fati hailing from Guinea-Bissau, as long as he doesn’t succumb to a Spanish inquisition.
Goalkeepers Birthplace FM20 Value Age
Edouard Mendy SEN Rennes GK Montivilliers, France 65 €4.40 28
Yassine Bounou MAR Sevilla GK Montreal, Canada 68 €10.00 29
Defenders
Faouzi Ghoulam ALG Napoli LB Saint-Priest, France 72 €17.10 29
Dakonam Djene TOG Getafe CB Dapaong 74 €26.80 28
Kalidou Koulibaly SEN Napoli CB Saint-Die, France 84 €64.30 28
Achraf Hakimi MAR B. Dortmund RWB Madrid, Spain 72 €23.30 21
Eric Bailly CIV Man United CB Bingerville 72 €31.40 26
Salif Sane SEN Schalke 04 CB Lormont, France 69 €9.00 29
Serge Aurier CIV Tottenham RB Ouragahio 70 €19.90 27
Kwadwo Asamoah GHA Inter Milan LWB Accra 74 €21.10 31
Midfielders
Riyad Mahrez ALG Man City RW Sarcelles, France 77 €62.00 29
Hakim Ziyech MAR Ajax CAM Dronten, Netherlands 79 €42.80 27
Thomas Partey GHA Atleti CDM Krobo Odumase 76 €33.40 26
Naby Keita GUI Liverpool CM Conakry 78 €52.20 25
Ismaila Sarr SEN Watford RW Saint-Louis 67 €22.20 22
Pepe CIV Arsenal RW Mantes-la-Jolie, France 76 €45.60 24
Idrissa Gana Gueye SEN PSG CDM Dakar 75 €28.80 30
Amine Harit MOR Schalke CAM Pontoise, France 69 €10.07 22
Forwards
Sadio Mane SEN Liverpool LF Sedhiou 90 €92.40 28
Wilfried Zaha CIV Crystal Palace CF Abidjan 77 €59.60 27
Moussa Marega MLI Porto ST Les Ulis, France 70 €16.80 29
Islam Slimani ALG Monaco ST Algiers 68 €19.80 31
Average/Totals 74 €712.90 27.13636364
A difficult pick but I’ve settled on a squad that could play in numerous formations, Sadio Mané and Riyad Mahrez are two of the Premier Leagues most potent wide players whilst the midfield is a superfluity of athleticism and technique.
The likes of Feghouli, Kessie and Gervinho didn’t survive the longlist but the competition was stiff. I’m not overly happy with the inclusion of goal starved Islam Slimani but the area is surprisingly scarce of talented out and out forwards.
If this team fails to collect all nine points in this group it would be the worst thing to happen to West Africa since Di Caprio’s accent in Blood Diamond.
South India & Arabian Sea
6 Indian provinces (Karnataka, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Goa), Sri Lanka, Maldives
Population (millions):239.70
Another region that practises footballing atheism, this was one of the most difficult to research. But if any documentarians want to make this into a series then I’d be happy to take some time out to fly out and research the Maldives for a while.
The two island nations donate their services to an uninspiring mess of Indian nonentity. Including the world’s sixth highest scoring active player Ali Ashfaq, never heard of him? Nah me neither.
Goalkeepers Birthplace FM20 Value Age
Kamaljit Singh IND Hyderabad GK Goa 24 €0.02 24
Chathura Ekanayake SRI Eagles Malé GK Sri Lanka 22 €0.00 27
Defenders
Anas Edathodika IND ATK CB Kerala 33 €0.03 33
Adil Khan IND Hyderabad RB Goa 32 €0.02 31
Mandar Rao Dessal IND Mumbai City LB Goa 31 €0.02 28
Lenny Ridrigues IND Goa CDM Goa 24 €0.02 32
Mohamed Imtiyas SRI Renown CB Kotahena 25 €0.01 24
Akram Abdul Ghanee MDV Valencia (MDV) CB Maafaru 28 €0.01 33
Edwin Sydney IND Chennaiyin RWB Kerala 21 €0.01 27
Asikur Alawadeen SRI Pelicans CB Kurunegala 23 €0.01 26
Midfielders
Brandon Fernandes IND Goa CAM Goa 33 €0.03 25
Rowllin Borges IND Mumbai City CDM Goa 32 €0.02 27
Sahal Abdul Samad IND Kerala Blasters CM Kerala 34 €0.04 23
Michael Soosairaj IND ATK CM Tamil Nadu 32 €0.03 25
Nikhil Poojari IND Hyderabad CM Karnataka 29 €0.02 24
Ahmed Razeek SRI Berliner AK CDM Berlin 44 €0.06 26
Mohamed Umair MDV Maziya CM Malé 27 €0.01 20
Romeo Fernandes IND Odisha RM Goa 23 €0.02 27
Forwards
Ashique Kuruniyan IND Bengaluru CF Kerala 35 €0.04 22
Jobby Justin IND ATK ST Kerala 28 €0.02 26
CK Vineeth IND Jamshedpur ST Kerala 27 €0.02 31
Ali Ashfaq MDV Club Green Streets ST Malé 27 €0.01 34
Average/Totals 29 €0.47 27.04545455
Ali Ashfaq has officially netted 463 times in his now 19 year career. Haters will say most of that was in the Maldivian league but I think I’d only be able to score half that amount so fair play to him.
The most notable islander is German born Sri Lankan Ahmed Razeek, the Berliner came through the ranks at now-Bundesliga team Union Berlin, but finds himself playing fourth tier football at the time of writing. At 25, Razeek only dedicated his services to Golden Lion in 2019, a bit of European experience may help the nation who have commanded just four wins in the last five years.
India’s most promising contribution to the side is 22 year old Ashique Kuruniyan, the young forward lacks goals but is known as something of a playmaker, Kuruniyan to Ashfaq could be the new Ozil to Ronaldo, but realistically I think this team will be lucky to find the net at all if the ratings are anything to Goa on.
Oceania and Southeast Asia
Australia, American Samoa, Cook Islands, Fiji, Kiribati, New Caledonia, New Zealand, Niue, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tahiti, Tonga, Tuvalu, Vanuatu, Cambodia, Singapore, Phillipines, Malaysia, 11 Indonisian Provinces (Papua, West Papua, Maluku, North Maluku, Sulawesi Island, East Nusa Tenggara, West Nusa Tenggara)
Population: 231.57
I almost broke the comma button on my laptop writing out all those islands, and it still doesn’t quite reach 240m. The pacific islands are home to some of the worst national teams out there, none more infamous than American Samoa who hold the record for the biggest ever defeat in international football, a 31-0 loss to Australia. If anyone hasn’t seen the documentary that was inspired subsequently to the loss, ‘next goal wins’ is perhaps my favourite football film and couldn’t recommend it highly enough when trying to explain the humanity of playing football in this part of the world.
The antagonists of the Samoan’s defeat, Australia have since changed confederations from lack of challenge. Joining the Asian Football Confederation in early 2006, the Socceroo’s have since won the Asian Cup on home soil and qualified for each of the previous four iterations of the World Cup. In 2006 a ‘golden generation’ fronted by Harry Kewell and Tim Cahill narrow missed out on a quarter final berth being beaten by eventual champions Italy in the 95th minute thanks to a controversial penalty.
While the likes of Kewell, Cahill and Mark Schwarzer have long since retired, the Aussies produce a modest yet constant procession of pro’s. Along with fellow anglophone New Zealand, the select Oceanic islanders often choose a path of playing in England’s football pyramid, with a few Premier League stalwarts found within the squad below.
Southeast Asia has a curious footballing culture, a strong general interest in the European game with seemingly little rewards for their appropriation, no malaysians manage to sneak into the selection whilst the Phillipines’ most famous athlete behind Manny Pacquiao only makes back up keeper.
Goalkeepers Birthplace Football manager Value Age
Matthew Ryan AUS Brighton GK Plumpton 66 €15.80 28
Neil Etheridge PH Cardiff GK London, England 64 €11.00 30
Defenders
Winston Reid NZ West Ham CB Auckland 66 €14.50 31
Milos Degenek AUS Red Star CB Knin, Croatia 62 €1.30 26
Trent Sainsbury AUS Maccabi Haifa RB Thornlie 60 €0.88 28
Bailey Wright AUS Bristol City CB Melbourne 59 €3.30 27
Wesley Lautoa NCA Dijon CB Epernay, France 62 €2.20 32
Aziz Behich AUS Basaksehir LB Melbourne 60 €2.20 29
Brad Smith AUS Bournemouth LWB Penrith 63 €9.50 26
Stephan Schrock PHI Cares RB Schweinfurt, Germany 57 €0.77 33
Midfielders
Aaron Mooy AUS Brighton CM Sydney 70 €26.70 29
Tom Rogic AUS Celtic CAM Griffith 67 €11.90 27
Mathew Leckie AUS Hertha Berlin CM Melbourne 65 €4.80 29
Robbie Kruse AUS Mebourne Victory RM Brisbane 64 €1.30 31
Awer Mabil AUS Mitdtjylland RW Kakuma, Kenya 63 €1.50 24
Craig Goodwin AUS Al-Wehda LM Adelaide 58 €4.60 28
Ryan Thomas NZ PSV CDM Te Puke 65 €6.50 25
Massimo Luongo AUS Sheffield W CDM Sydney 62 €7.80 27
Forwards
Chris Wood NZ Burnley ST Auckland 67 €23.40 28
Adam Taggart AUS Suwon Bluewings ST Perth 62 €0.84 26
Aposrolos Giannou AUS AEK Larnaka ST Nousa, Greece 63 €1.30 30
Daniel Arzani AUS Celtic CF Khorramabad, Iran 60 €8.20 21
Average/Totals 63 €160.29 29.68181818
As you can see the team is dominated by Aussie and Kiwi men, but there is some polynesian persuasion in the way of Wesley Lautoa who takes restbite trying to defend the likes of Neymar, Mbappe and Depay by bullying semi-pro strikers playing for New Caledonia.
Daniel Arzani is the best bet for a future talisman, despite really struggling to make the grade in Europe he’s still only 21 and could yet fulfil his potential. The Celtic forward has impeccable technical ability and has an eye on one day becoming a regular at his parent club Man City.
Chris Wood has a Premier League goal record that any striker would be proud of and is the archetypal Sean Dyche forward, but I would suggest that his physical play style precedes his genuine international quality. New Zealand famously exited the 2010 World Cup as the only side to leave undefeated, and part of that was due to the defensive talents of Winston Reid, who at that time was a 21 year old padawan learner to Blackburn hero Ryan Nelson. Now 31, The former West Ham captain Reid leads this sides defensive line where he’ll do his best to make the younger lads do most of the legwork.
Neil Etheridge is unlucky not to be the standout number one in this team, the keeper come underwear model caught the eyes of English fans saving three penalties in the 2018-19 season, although when on loan to Bristol Rovers he caught a free-kick and stepped backwards into his own goal, don’t think we’ve forgotten Neil.
Western China
9 Chinese Provinces (Feng Jin, Gansu, Shaanxi, Sichaun, Tibet, Xinjiang Uygur, Ningxia, Qinghai)
Population (millions): 256.25
A little over the limit for this one but you wouldn’t notice from the squad. The west of China is the least densely populated region and the one with the least investment in the club game, so it is no surprise that there is correlation to the talent, or lack thereof.
Every metric I’ve used in research points to this being the Chinese team that will struggle the most, the bulk of the players hail from Sichuan, which since we’re on reddit may give most of you PTSD of Rick and Morty fans standing on McDonalds counters.
None of the following players featured in the most recent Chinese national squad. In a sporting wilderness that hasn’t been invited to the game of Monopoly out east, you can’t blame this side for underwhelming.
Goalkeepers Birthplace FM20 Value Age
Wang QI CHI Shaanxi Athletic GK Shaanxi 35 €0.60 27
Yerjet Yerzat CHI Chongqing Lifan GK Xinjiang Uygur 36 €0.72 27
Defenders
Yang Xiaotian CHI Jiangsu Suning LB Shaanxi 40 €1.40 30
Wang Erzhuo CHI Shaanxi Athletic CB Shaanxi 28 €0.24 33
Alishat CHI Xinjiang Sport Lottery CB Xinjiang 40 €0.43 25
Zhang Ao CHI Xinjiang Sport Lottery RB Shanxi 28 €0.37 29
Liu Yu CHI Shanghai Shenxin CB Sichuan 30 €0.44 25
Zhou Xuri CHI Dalian Yifang CB Sichuan 29 €0.30 21
Otkur Hesen CHI Sichaun Jiuniu LB Xinjiang 20 €0.00 27
Bari Mamatil CHI Qiangdao Huanghai RWB Xinjiang 39 €1.50 31
Midfielders
Peng Xinli CHI Shanghai Shenhua CM Shanxi 47 €2.60 29
Mirahmetjan Muzepper CHI Shanghai SIPG CAM Xinjiang 46 €3.30 29
Zhang Xiuwei CHI Guangzhou E CM Sichuan 46 €2.70 24
Luo Senwen CHI Hebei China Fortune CDM Sichuan 44 €2.10 27
Li Yuanyi CHI Shenzhen CM SIchuan 42 €1.30 26
Zhang Chiming CHI Tianjin RW SIchuan 38 €1.10 31
Shewket Yalqun CHI Guangzhou E LW Xinjiang 33 €0.94 27
Yehya CHI Xinjiang Tianshan CM Xinjiang 24 €0.24 32
Forwards
Yan Dinghao CHI Gondomar CF Sichuan 45 €2.40 22
Li Fang CHI Chongqing Lifan ST Sichuan 34 €1.30 27
Gan Yingbo CHI Sichaun Longfor CF Sichuan 24 €0.16 35
Abduhamit Abdugheni CHI Jiangsu Suning CF Shaanxi 35 €0.75 23
Average/Totals 36 €24.89 27.59090909
Finding a 22 was a real struggle and there is an imbalance of positions to show for it. The only true striker is Chongqing’s Li Fang, who is officially listed as a striker-come-right back which is an oddly specific duology of skills.
The squad is predominantly composed of players from the nations second tier CL1, which to enlight the general reader means they probably aren’t going to win the tournament.
Another day another group, tomorrow we finally see one of the long anticipated Western European megasquads, and play a game of spot the Uzbekistani. Thanks again for reading, let me know if you think I've missed anyone from the squads or made an error and try to have a stab at the starting XI’s for today's teams.
submitted by Mel0n_Collie to soccer [link] [comments]

What if... One-club men lived forever

The year is 2017. Top scientists have finally cracked the ability to stop ageing, and the world rejoices. The discovery prompts an immediate FIFA investigation into exactly what this means for world football from now on. How will the careers come and go when every team can just preserve their best stars? How will the next Messi break through? The Qatar FA suggest restricting it to only Qatari players, a motion that's only narrowly defeated. In unrelated news, a bunch of mysterious Qatari bank accounts are seized the day before the vote. Eventually, a compromise is decided upon between. Only those players who’ve proven themselves to be in it for the sport, and their team, can use it. The players who have stuck with their team through thick and thin, who’ve turned down bigger money offers to stay where they are. One-Club Men. However, should their loyalty ever waiver, and they choose to leave, those players will lose their right to an everlasting career, and have to face the advance years once again. Who will remain loyal the longest? Who will ride out the lowest of lows to stay at their lifelong club?
Unfortunately for those of you hoping I’ve found a secret miracle, that’s just the best nonsense I could come up with to frame this scenario. In less dramatic terms, using FM 2017, I'm going to select 50 one-club men from the top 5 leagues and de-age them to around 22. Every 5 years I'll de-age them down to 22 again, unless they abandon their loyalty. I'll also be adjusting everyone's contract to expire in 2020 to make it equal, and undoing international retirements where necessary. Nothing overly complicated, but I’m expecting this one to run a long long time if I’m going to have everyone leave, so I’m good with it not being too complicated.
Reddit side note! It's me again. Some may remember my experiments from ages ago. I'm back and writing again, but as you can probably tell, with a new name and website. If you want to see this post with much better formatting, all the images, and everyone's profile at the end, go here to read it in full: link You can stay here if you prefer though!
So who actually qualifies for this? I've restricted it to players from the Top 5 leagues of England, Italy, Spain, Germany and France, and only included those that have been at their clubs the longest. As well as the genuine candidates like Messi and Totti, loaned out players like Lahm qualify, as do those like Iniesta who haven't left in FM 2017, and even those that have left in-game, but are known for their careers at one club. Buffon is a good example of the latter. I've included a link to an image with all 5 players here: link
With all this loyalty around, I wanted to mix it up a bit by adding in one final player. Someone completely opposite to everyone picked so far, the anti-one-club man, the journeyman of all journeymen. And after some research, I came up with the perfect candidate. Sebastián Abreu, a man who in his career has played at an impressive 29 different teams in 11 different countries, setting a Guinness world record along the way. Abreu will receive the same treatment as the loyal players, except it won’t stop when he moves team. I want him to move around more, spread his wings, see how many teams he can collect over an illustrious career.
That’s enough explaining for now. Should be pretty clear what’s going on, just a bunch of footballers never getting old. Time to get things rolling and see who eliminates themselves. Who can stick it out the longest, who will become THE one-club man?

2016/17

With our younger one club men unleashed on the world, many of them attract instant attention from new clubs. For a while it stays quiet and looks like the first transfer window may pass without incident. Only a few loans crop up... until Javi López because the first man to fall. With Espanyol not meeting his standards, he makes a £2.4M trip down the coast to join Valencia. He proves to be the only summer casualty by the time the window slams shut.
January brings the winter window, and the Premier League clubs start to sniff around, ready to throw bags of cash at unsuspecting players. It doesn’t take long before the next two players are reeled in by money and lose their eternal youth. First Marcel Schmelzer in a £20.5M move to Liverpool, followed by Bruno joining moneybags Man City. By the end of the window, Nacho also heads to the north of England, joining rivals Man United. I’m not sure if any of them have realised how damn cold it is up there. That window swiftly ends, settling the bottom 4 finishers in the competition.
Returning to the world of actual football results briefly, and there aren’t many shocks to be seen. Man City finish 6th, Everton get relegated and Borussia Mönchengladbach reach the Champions League Semi-Finals. A few players see their team relegated, as Werder Bremen, Caen and Freiburg go down, so there could be a few casualties once that disappointment has set in. But all in all, the footballing world has coped just fine.
Loyal Players Remaining: 46
Abreu Club Count: 23 clubs in 10 countries
Odd Winners: None

2017/18

With everyone’s transfer budgets warmed up, it doesn’t take long for the action to get back underway. The previous season has barely finished before Chris Solly trades in his morals for a Premier League move to Norwich. Sergio Álvarez joins him in England, making the slightly odd move to Bournemouth before a big £52M move sees Koke trade loyalty for a big move to Man City. That’s the most surprising move so far, as I expected many of the players at top clubs to stick around. The final two transfers of the window take us to sunny Spain, where both Xabi Prieto and Mario become massive glory hunters, trading in their life long clubs for Atletico Madrid and Barcelona respectively. Javi López, having left Espanyol to join Valencia last year, immediately realises his mistake and rejoins Espanyol. It’s too little too late though, his status as a one-club man is already ruined.
The winter window comes and goes without even a hint of action, so things may already be starting to quieten down. Over in Brazil, Sebastián Abreu has his contract with Bangu come to an end after a good season but fails to attract any new suitors before the European season ends.
Around the world, things keep ticking on relatively normally. Watford take a surprising FA Cup win despite finishing rock bottom of the league, meaning they’ll have European nights alongside their Championship campaign. The loyalty of Seube, Höfler and Bargfrede is rewarded, as Caen, Bremen and Freiburg are immediately promoted back to the top tier. Las Palmas head in the opposite direction, which causes David García to hand in an immediate transfer request. The Spaniard could very well be the next player to go.
Loyal Players Remaining: 41
Abreu Club Count: 23 clubs in 10 countries
Odd Winners: Watford (FA Cup)

2018/19

My suggestion that things may be quietening down is immediately disproved by the biggest move so far. Bayern Munich legend Philipp Lahm makes a huge £82M transfer to Manchester City, throwing away all he’d built up at Bayern so far. But it doesn't end there, as 2 more huge transfers are finalised right after. First Claudio Marchisio drops Juventus, clearly not happy with them losing the title to AC Milan, and moves to Real Madrid. Then Daniele De Rossi trades in Roma for Barcelona. Whilst both have moved in real life, I didn’t expect either to fall so early in this, being icons at such huge clubs. A little later, David García makes his predicted move away from relegated Las Palmas, opting to stay in Spain with Osasuna. And then on the final day of the window, one last move. David Zurutuza decides the Premier League is more to his taste and joins Noble at West Ham. Javi López continues his tour of Spain, realising rejoining Espanyol doesn’t earn him back everlasting youth, and so heads to Sevilla instead. Currently, he’s moved around more than the specific journeyman player I chose to actually move around. Talking of, Abreu does find a new contract, heading back to Uruguay to join River Plate Montevideo.
The winter transfer window is again mostly quiet, with very little potential action. There are still some transfers though, as Robin Knoche becomes the 15th person out, heading to Borussia Dortmund. Then a legend moves on, as Iker Casillas decides that barely getting any game time behind Keylor Navas isn’t worth it, and so joins Monaco for a mere £11M. I guess you can't escape the real world after all.
The summer of 2018 means a World Cup, a tournament which regularly creates bizarre results in Football Manager. This year is no exception, as the likes of Italy, Belgium and Argentina fall in the group stages, before South Korea beat both Germany and France in the knockouts. The final between Brazil and Croatia proves 100% less heartbreaking than the real 2018 final for the Croatians, as they become champions of the world. In domestic football, Man United take all the English trophies on offer in a Quadruple, whilst Freiburg find themselves relegated yet again, as do Montpellier.
Loyal Players Remaining: 34
Abreu Club Count: 24 clubs in 10 countries
Odd Winners: Croatia (World Cup)

2019/20

Another season, another transfer window, another set of swirling rumours around our one-club men. Borussia Dortmund manage to steal away another of our competitors from a German rival, taking Timo Horn early in the window. Having been relegated yet again last season, Nicolas Höfler decides enough is enough and leaves Freiburg for Hertha Berlin. Over in Italy, and Chievo Legend Sergio Pellissier finally caves, leaving his relegation-threatened lifelong team for European battlers Fiorentina. But that's all the entertainment I can offer, no big signings this time around I’m afraid. Let's go see what Javi López is up to instead. His merry-go-round of clubs continues yet again, moving over to Deportivo de La Coruña in the latest of his ever-decreasing value of transfers.
January retains its typical bleak and dull atmosphere, with no sign of action whatsoever until the final day of the window. Hugo Mallo decides to try and add to his trophy cabinet and heads to Man United. Not the worst career move to throw away eternal life for considering their dominance right now. And with his departure, the total number of players that we've lost hits a nice round 20.
In the Premier League, Man United claim their 4th title in a row, exerting total dominance over everyone. But where one dominance rises, another falls, with Dortmund claiming the Bundesliga to knock Bayern off their perch. The shock of the season comes in the Coupe de France, where 3rd tier LB Châteauroux knock out Lyon, Auxerre and PSG before falling to Caen in the semi-finals. With Monaco having fallen to 4th tier SA Spinalien, Caen beat an easier opposition of RC Lens in the final, leading to Seube lifting the teams first-ever Coupe de France. Not bad for a player I expected to never lift a trophy. On a less joyous note, Höfler having left relegated Freiburg, sees his new team Hertha relegated immediately too. It seems there is no escaping the 2. Bundesliga!
On the record front, Gianluigi Buffon sets a huge benchmark, breaking the 200 cap mark for Italy. With no-one else close to him, he’ll stay the leader for a long time. Messi also breaks a boundary, climbing through 400 league goals during his career at Barcelona. Like Buffon, he’s way clear of any competitor, and unless a miracle happens that sees him abandon Barcelona, I can’t see anyone catching him soon.
Loyal Players Remaining: 30
Abreu Club Count: 24 clubs in 10 countries
Odd Winners: Caen (Coupe de France)

2020/21

2020 arrives, and with it, two important points arrive too. Firstly, everyone gets de-aged for the first time in this experiment. The 20 that have left get to watch from a distance thinking about what could have been. Second, the initial contracts are set to expire, so anyone that hasn’t re-signed will out the door. Which is exactly what happens to Víctor Valdés. Having barely appeared for Barcelona since his return, he leaves the club on a free and heads to the southern French coast to join Marseille. A day later and someone else leaves France, as Romain Danzé who decides one de-ageing is enough and moves to Schalke. Tony Hibbert also struggled for games at Everton despite his new youthful look, and so he walks out the door. He opts for Aston Villa, who to my great surprise have sunk to a mid-table League 1 team. Feeling left out, Spain joins in, with Oier Sanjurjo departing Osasuna and moving to Villarreal. The window is then capped by a bizarre final free transfer. Despite appearing regularly, Xavi isn’t offered a new contract by Barcelona. Man City can’t quite believe their luck and snap up the Spanish wizard a few days before the window shuts.
Winter brings with it just one transfer in its usual action-heavy way. Roberto Torres leaves Osasuna, making a £35.5M switch to Atletico. I’m not sure whether Atletico thought they were getting a different de-aged Torres because that can only be described as an overpayment. Either way, that means we've now lost over half the competitors.
Euro 2020 passes, and Croatia prove their World Cup victory was no fluke, becoming both champions of the World, and champions of Europe. On the Continental front, things have been fairly predictable so far, at least until this years Europa League. Hoffenheim escape a tough group and go all the way to win the entire thing. Not bad for a team that barely qualified in the first place. Oh, and Messi wins a little thing called the Ballon d’Or for the 10th time. I think he’s only just getting started.
Loyal Players Remaining: 24
Abreu Club Count: 24 clubs in 10 countries
Odd Winners: Hoffenheim (Europa League)

2021/22

The 21/22 season begins with two transfers on the first day. Loïc Perrin makes his way to the Premier League to join Leicester. But that's a minor splash compared to the other move, as after 768 appearances and 302 goals, Francesco Totti leaves Roma. It seems wrong to see it, but he’ll now be wearing a Man United kit. Dortmund continue their run of stealing loyalty, this time bringing Tony Jantschke into the fold. Another contract is run to the end, forcing Álex Bergantiños out of Deportivo without much choice, before being picked up by Cagliari. Mikel González opts to end his time at Real Sociedad, joining Pellissier over at Fiorentina. And as August comes to a close, it looks like Totti may be the only big departure. That is until Gianluigi Buffon decides to call time on his Juventus career. It’s an odd move, with the legend going sorta sideways from a regular starting Juventus spot to Bayern Munich. But there’s no going back now, as his 636 league appearance career with the Italians comes to a close. Two legends down in one window.
No season is complete without a single winter signing to warrant an entire separate paragraph, and this season is no different. Sergi Roberto moves away from Barcelona, in a £24M move to French giants PSG. A good way to guarantee yourself plenty of titles I guess. Abreu also makes a winter move, adding Guarani in the Brasilian second tier to his collection.
Roberto’s decision proves to be a good one, as PSG go on to claim their 10th one in a row. Not many surprises elsewhere, although Real Oviedo get close to pulling off a shock in the Copa del Rey. The second tier team beat Osasuna, Barcelona and Sevilla on the way to the final, but ultimately Real Madrid prove a step too far. Elsewhere everything is won by a team you’d probably expect. Exciting stuff.
Loyal Players Remaining: 17
Abreu Club Count: 25 clubs in 10 countries
Odd Winners: None

2022/23

With the pool of players rapidly decreasing, very few of the crew are even wanted by other clubs anymore. Perhaps deterred by their steadfast loyalty? A few moves do still happen though, so we’re not dead yet. Firstly Anthony Lopes gets fed up of PSG dominating his league and moves to AC Milan for a better shot at a trophy. It’s not long before that story is forgotten, as the biggest transfer fee in the competition so far is dropped. Andrés Iniesta is stolen away from Barcelona, in a huge £86M move to Man United. The midfield maestro fell 2 appearances short of 600 league games for Barcelona, but with his new £300K per-week contract it’s not hard to guess why. That proves to be all the action for the summer window, with no-one willing to top that huge move.
After half a season of hearing their noisy neighbours gloating about their star signing, Man City snap. And if there’s one thing City are good at, it’s splashing the cash. In probably the easiest negotiation over fee Barcelona has ever had, Sergio Busquets makes a £95M move to the sky blues. Yeh, that’ll show United. Once again no-one wants to get in the middle of the awkward Manchester squabble, and the winter transfer closes with a whimper.
The second World Cup of this experiment comes and goes. This time all the giants make it safely through the Group Stages, but it’s Africa that really excels. Morocco make the knockouts, Egypt battle through to the Quarter Finals, but Nigeria come out best. They beat South Korea and Argentina before falling valiantly to France in the Semi-Finals. A 1-0 victory of Italy does see them finish in an impressive 3rd place, becoming the first African team to finish in the top 3 of the World Cup. France win the title on penalties after a deceivingly action-filled 0-0 draw with Spain. The domestic scene follows that with a similar lack of real shocks. In the Carabao Cup, Bournemouth beat Arsenal, Chelsea and Man United on the way to lifting the trophy. But it’s the lesser Cup, so outside of Bournemouth no-one really cares. PSG finally have their grip on the Ligue 1 broken, as Casillas leads Monaco to a fantastic title. Otherwise, all the league titles and cups fall to teams you’d expect them too. Another thrilling year.
Loyal Players Remaining: 14
Abreu Club Count: 25 clubs in 10 countries
Odd Winners: Bournemouth (Carabao Cup)

2023/24

Literally nothing happens. Thomas Kessler decides that no team can ignore his existence for 20 seasons in a row and get away with it, leaving Köln to join Trabzonspor. So as I said, literally nothing happens. Even Javi López moving to yet another club would be more interesting than that.
The same applies to the footballing season. Asides from Casillas captaining Monaco to a Champions League title, or Atletico winning the title again, exactly 10 years after their last win, everything is frustratingly normal. And even those two events are hardly shocks.
Before I start to lose hope, there are a few interesting moves over the last few years from the losing group that are worth highlighting. First season mover Bruno didn’t make the impact he hoped and found himself moving to the lovely Stoke. Robin Knoche barely received any playtime at Dortmund and found himself cast out to Dinamo Zagreb. Even in League 1, Tony Hibbert could barely get any game time at Villa and so moved on the Scunthorpe in League 2. But the winner of the oddest move has to be Zurutuza, who somehow manage to pull off a move to Liverpool after West Ham found themselves relegated, only make a few disappointing performances, before being released on a free to join Al-Arabi in Qatar. Not quite the career he was anticipating when joining the Premier League I bet.
Loyal Players Remaining: 13
Abreu Club Count: 25 clubs in 10 countries
Odd Winners: None

2024/25

The summer transfer window arrives for another season, and with it finally comes a huge deal! Javi López has found yet another club! Hooray! As for actual competitors, absolutely no movement whatsoever. Even from Abreu, who’s been at Guarani for 2.5 years now. Manceau, Lewington and Seube complain to their managers about playing time or relegation, but none of them actually make a move anywhere. So our final 13 will add another 5 years onto their career length.
There are some fun statistics from our 51 worth mentioning at this point. Buffon leads the way with both total league appearances (935) and international caps (259). His caps are at a point where they’re too high for the game to display, as the value is stored as an unsigned 8-bit integer, and so has rolled over to just show 3. Most appearances for a single club goes to Dean Lewington however, who thanks to being a regular sits at 857 league appearances for the MK Dons (or 889 if you include Wimbledon). In the goals department, the winner is obvious. With almost 500 league goals, 100 international goals and 14 Ballon d’Or awards, Messi sits on top of everyone. On the international scene, he’s run close by Müller and the fast-approaching Kane, but for league goals, it’s not even close.
2024 brings with it a Euro tournament, which doesn’t provide much in the way of surprises, but brings with it some exciting high scoring matches. All ending in a 4-3 victory for a Thomas Müller led Germany over neighbours Netherlands. Which I’m sure went down very well. The domestic scene decides to spring a few shocks though. In Serie A, Roma claim an impressive title thanks to main striker Iheanacho, their first since 2001. The German and French cups provide surprise winners, in the form of Hertha Berlin and Dijon. Both cap an impressive run by beating their respective league winners, Bayern and Monaco. Even the continental tournaments turn up too. First Monaco cement their place as a top power in football by winning their second Champions League in a row. That coming a week after the best win there could possibly be. Tottenham win the Europa League! Screw the other stuff, that last part is all I need!
Loyal Players Remaining: 13
Abreu Club Count: 25 clubs in 10 countries
Odd Winners: Dijon (Coupe de France), Hertha Berlin (DFB Pokal)

At this point though it’s fair to say that the competition results are more interesting than the movements of the players. Which is the perfect signal that things need to speed up a little bit. So from now on, updates will be every 5 years, which lines up perfectly with player age resets, letting us see who has made it to the next checkpoint.

2025-2030

Another round of de-ageing hits, and you’d think that would incite some interest in our final 13. Instead, it’s a ghost town. We do have an immediate dropout though, as Nicolas Seube finally gets fed up with his lack of playtime at Caen and heads for Panionios in Greece. A year later the situation is repeated. I’m not entirely sure what his unhappiness was about, but Iker Muniain decides he’s had enough of Athletic Club and moves to Hamburger SV. At least he left on exactly 100 goals for Athletic though, a nice round number. With 11 left, a standoff to reach the top 10 ensues. For 3 years no-one budges in their show of loyalty, until in 2029… Dean Lewington leaves for Derby County on a free. It’s a huge move, with Lewington becoming the first man to break through 1000 league appearances for a single club before leaving. But he’s moved on now, and it won’t be long before that record is broken. That move means we’re left with our final 10 contestants. Terry, Iraola, Messi, Susaeta, Noble, Jourdren, Müller, Kane, Manceau and Bargfrede have secured a top 10 spot, and now all that’s left to do is fight it out for number 1.
Over in Brazil, our anti-one-club man continues his journey, although it remains in Brazil for the moment. Only 2 clubs are added to his count, with a long stay at Atletico Goianiense followed by a £2M move to top tier Coritiba. I’m kind of hoping he starts to make enough waves in the Brazilian league to move to Europe and add some new countries to his history.
Those that fell before the first de-ageing are retiring, finishing off their magnificent, or in some cases very un-magnificent, careers (as losers). Javi López finishes his fine anti-loyalty tour around Spain with 7 transfers to his name. Schmelzer, Nacho, Solly, Álvarez, Koke, Mario, Prieto, Marchisio, De Rossi, David García, Zurutuza, Knoche, Höfler, Pellissier, Mallo, Horn and Hibbert end their careers. Many, such as Nacho, Horn and De Rossi stay just as committed to their new clubs as they did their old, finishing out their careers after just a single transfer. Of the pensioners, Sergio Pellissier manages to rack up the most career league appearances and goals, at 894 and 246, although that’s largely thanks to a huge head start. De Rossi dominates on the international scene, earning a whopping 197 caps over his 30-year career. Naturally, all those records will be blown out the water once the next group start retiring, but it’s nice to have some benchmarks.
Around the world, plenty has gone on worth hearing about. The Netherlands claim their first-ever World Cup win, beating Brazil in the final, whilst in the Euro’s Germany win their second tournament in a row. The Gold Cup throws up a few interesting results too, as first, the Mexico B team win it, with their A team tied up in the Confederations Cup. Then 4 years later Canada take the title, only the second time in their history. Over in Italy, Lazio find themselves relegated as the league starts to shake itself up a bit. But other than that, domestic football remains relatively unspectacular. Oh except… TOTTENHAM WINNING THE LEAGUE. Didn’t even have to reset it and we won it before Arsenal did. North London is very much Lilywhite now, suck it Gooners!
Loyal Players Remaining: 10
Abreu Club Count: 27 clubs in 10 countries
Odd Winners: Tottenham (Premier League)

2030-2035

Another 5 years pass and to start with it looks like the top 10 are going to hold firm. Eventually though, the temptation of money proves too much for one man. That man is Geoffrey Jourdren who trades in his starting slot at Montpellier for a cosy backup contract at PSG. Then comes… dead silence. Not even a rumour, or an unhappy player. No-one even hints at leaving for the next 4 years, which means we end the period with nine players on the books. The real waiting game has begun. Even our journeyman Abreu is moving in a very slow way, as a five year Coritiba stint finishes with a free transfer to Red Bull Brasil. I think my hopes for a European move have died.
At least there are a lot of retirements to run through. Bruno, Lahm, Casillas, Valdés, Danzé, Oier, Xavi, Torres, Perrin, Jantschke, Bergantiños, González, Roberto, Iniesta and Busquets hang up their playing boots. That does leave us without some noted legends, with Lahm, Casillas, Iniesta and Busquets reaching 200 caps for their country. You’d think Spain would have won more with that golden generation. Casillas and Xavi also both hit 1000 league appearances thanks to a strong head start before the experiment. But it’s Andrés Iniesta who is the most loyal of the bunch, racking up nearly 600 appearances for his original club before departing.
Five years leaves plenty of time for interesting results once again. England take a World Cup win, which is always a sign of the apocalypse, only made more bizarre by Scotland making the semi-finals in the same competition. Portugal take the other title in that period, whilst the Euros also see a surprise winner in Switzerland. France provides the biggest shock at club level, as Lille come from nowhere to win Ligue 1, and then immediately revert back to mid-table once again. Otherwise, the time belongs to Manchester City. The oil bar… sky blues take 4 out of 5 titles in both the Premier League and Champions League, with all that cash flinging finally paying off.
Loyal Players Remaining: 9
Abreu Club Count: 28 clubs in 10 countries
Odd Winners: England (World Cup), Lille (Ligue 1)

2035-40

With just nine players left, once again we get a transfer fairly early on in the period. Early as in the first transfer window, which makes me wonder why they waited so long. Anyway, Mark Noble has had his patience tested by West Ham’s yoyoing between the Premier League and Championship a bit too much and finally caves. He makes a £20M move to Burnley, who… are doing the exact same thing. Not sure that was the brightest idea. Like the previous 5 years though, one transfer is all we get. None of the others move, despite some pretty heavy unhappiness from Bargfrede and Manceau. Abreu keeps up his trail, running out his contract with Red Bull Brasil and opting for Chapecoense to reach 29 clubs in his career.
With very few moving recently, that also means less and less are retiring, as just 7 ex-competitors leave the game. Totti, Buffon, Lopes, Kessler, Seube, Muniain and Lewington call time on their football life. The fact they all stuck with it for so long means there’s so impressive stats between them. Totti racked up 1154 league appearances, with 768 at Roma. Dean Lewington, after leaving MK Dons with 1003 appearances finished with a total of 1287. Italian legend Gianluigi Buffon finished with a whopping 1307 league appearances, but perhaps more impressively, 334 international caps. But the single most surprising statistic goes to Thomas Kessler. Despite barely playing in Germany he manages to notch a grand total of 7 goals after his move to Turkey. Maybe if he’d been a striker he’d have actually played at Koln. Oh and Seube ends his career Greek. Because why not.
As per every time, a quick look around the world’s results is needed. Spain win back the World Cup titles, whilst Italy take a Euro win. Argentina, Mexico and Australia claim all their continents international trophies in the window, so no massive surprises there. The domestic world isn’t exactly littered with shocks either. Brescia win a Coppa Italia, and Nîmes Olympique grab 4 top 5 finishes in a row in France, but there’s not really much to shout about. I think it’s best to just get on with the next de-ageing.
Loyal Players Remaining: 8
Abreu Club Count: 29 clubs in 10 countries
Odd Winners: Brescia (Coppa Italia)

2040-45

Down to 8 now, so it’s getting tougher. And a lot slower, so slow in fact that not a single transfer in our group happens in five years. For a moment I was excited to see Manceau at Recreativo de Huelva, but that was just a loan. So I was back to being crushed. On the plus side, Abreu makes some huge steps. He adds not just 1, but 2 new countries to his history! The first is Portugal, in a huge step up to join Braga. As usual, it’s just until his contract ends, before he moves on to Frankfurt in the Bundesliga. He’s hardly setting Europe alight but I don’t care, he’s actually moving!
There’s only one retiree to talk about too, as pretty much everyone has already gone. Geoffrey Jourdren finishes up with 925 total league appearances. It probably could have been a bit more, if he’d not spent 10 years of his career being a backup at PSG and Bayern. On a far more interesting note, Terry breaks through 1500 career league appearances. Kane also hits 256 international goals, which results in the number resetting to 0 just like caps. So the game has him on 96 caps with 11 goals, when the actual numbers are a stunning 352 caps with 267 goals.
Having seen my disappointment last time around, the world decides to liven things up. Denmark become both Champions of the World and Champions of Europe in 2042 and 2040, although they lose the European title to Germany 4 years later. At the continental level, the Champions League stays on track, but the Europa League brings some bizarre winners into the mix. Nîmes Olympique, Real Sociedad, Leicester and Bristol City all win a trophy. It seems Mark Noble finally made a right move transferring to Bristol City, as the club is now a strong top 6 Premier League side. Manceau wins a Coupe de France at Angers, but it’s still Nîmes making waves, forming a big three with PSG and Monaco. It may not be long before either Nîmes or Bristol City win their league, which is not something I expected to be saying.
Loyal Players Remaining: 8
Abreu Club Count: 31 clubs in 12 countries
Odd Winners: Nîmes Olympique/Bristol City (Europa League), Angers (Coupe de France)

2045-50

2045 kicks off and once again Manceau deceives me. This time it’s a loan spell in Denmark with Brøndby that had me thinking he was gone. Well you know what they say, fool me once shame on you, fool me twice… I’m probably gonna fall for it. It looks like there’s going to be no moves whatsoever once again, until June 2047 arrives and I notice a contract is set to expire. Imagine my shock when Lionel Messi is not offered a contract by Barcelona and is let go. It’s made doubly worse by the fact that of all teams to pick him up, it's Atletico Madrid. Apparently, 37 Ballon d’Or awards aren’t good enough for Barcelona anymore. I don’t even care that nothing else happens. That’s enough to stun me.
Over in the retirement home, Mark Noble moves into a room. After an up and down career, the Englishman did manage some silverware with Bristol City and ended his career with 1317 league appearances. He even earned not just 1, but 90 England caps across his 44-year career.
Around the world, interesting results are still cropping up. England grab their third World Cup win beating Colombia, whilst Honduras win their first-ever Gold Cup. Much to my bitter disappointment, Arsenal win 4 of the 5 Champions Leagues on offer, as well as 3 Premier League titles. Chelsea have a period of bottom 10 finishes which deeply upsets Terry, whilst over in France, Chamois Niortais begin to try and join the top 3. Don’t worry I’ve never heard of them either.
Loyal Players Remaining: 7
Abreu Club Count: 32 clubs in 12 countries
Odd Winners: Honduras (Gold Cup)

2050-55

With the world still reeling at the fact the Messi has moved from Barcelona, everyone kinda forgets to make any moves. In fact, Messi is the first person to move yet again, leaving Atletico in a very cheap 34.5M move to Man City. Which is more in line with where I originally expected him to go. Abreu finishes one contract, at Hapoel Be’er Sheva, and moves onto the next, but it’s with Monterrey so doesn’t count. Sebastian, it has to be new clubs. John Terry is starting to get frustrated with a Chelsea team that has really fallen from grace. The Londoners barely survive relegation in 2052/53, so Terry may be the next to go. Or maybe I know nothing and it’s completely random.
No-one retires this year, so let’s take a brief look at some statistics of our remaining 7 + Messi. All our players have now reached 1000 appearances, with Bargfrede in last at 1173. Messi has crossed 1000 league goals, now a full 300 clear of the chasing pack of Abreu and Kane. On the international level, Thomas Müller becomes the first player to need a rollover of caps twice, moving on to a massive 524 international caps. But it’s Kane who still leads the international goal stat, nearly breaking 350, a full 50 ahead of the German.
Müller does, however, grab a World Cup win for Germany so I’m sure he won’t be too upset. At least until they’re deposed by Holland 4 years later. On the continental level, Bristol City win another Europa League title beating previous champions Espanyol. Middlesbrough also nearly earn a trophy, having joined Bristol as a top 6 team. But the winner of the biggest shock, although I did say this might happen, goes to Chamois Niortais, who topple the dominance of PSG and Monaco to capture a miraculous Ligue 1 title in the last season of the period.
Loyal Players Remaining: 7
Abreu Club Count: 32 clubs in 12 countries
Odd Winners: Chamois Niortais (Ligue 1), Bristol City/Espanyol (Europa League)

2055-60

The summer window of 2055 opens and as I warned may happen, there’s an almost immediate transfer. Fed up with Chelsea’s mediocre finishes, John Terry decides to move on. Unfortunately for Chelsea fans, Arsenal is his next club, which I’m sure will cause a few shudders. A year later and another move comes around, once again due to unhappiness over the club’s performance. Surprisingly it's Thomas Müller,who's annoyed by the fact that Bayern haven’t won a Bundesliga title since 2048, and so runs down his contract. Leverkusen almost earn his signature, but eventually its the glory of PSG that proves too much to resist. But we’re not done there! Another player runs down their contract, opting to move to Vitoria de Setubal in Portugal. Vincent Manceau finally makes a real move rather than constantly faking me out. So with another 3 players down, we’re left with our final 4. The race for the top 3 is hotting up now!
We do have a retirement this time thanks to the transfer window livening up. The world's best-ever player, Lionel Messi, retires from football. He ends up on a total of 1858 league appearances, scoring a massive 1068 goals in this time. 1430 appearances and 895 goals of those belonging to his 45-year career at Barcelona. On the international scene, he earned an impressive 505 caps and 276 goals. But it’s the awards where he shines. 279 individual awards, 82 team titles, 22 league titles, 6 Champions League titles, 45 Ballon d’Or awards. What makes it even crazier is 41 of those Ballon d’Or awards were in a row, as he earned every single one from 2015 to 2056. I don’t think I’ll see another player like that crop up in any save, truly the world’s best player.
Looking out on the world, I can say that it’s a Chamois Niortais player that breaks Messi’s streak, as the French team claim another two Ligue 1 titles. It’s hard to say they’re a “surprise winner” at this point. Bristol City finally make the full step up to join the big guns, winning 3 Carabao Cups, 1 FA Cup, 2 Premier League titles and even a Champions League trophy. If any Bristol City fans want this save to give themselves hope over the future, I can send it over. Internationally it's the era of Portugal, as they claim both the Euro and World Cup trophies.
Loyal Players Remaining: 4
Abreu Club Count: 32 clubs in 12 countries
Odd Winners: Bristol City (Premier League/Champions League), Lyon (Relegation)

With so few players left, now is probably a good time to speed it up once again. The final four will be tough to budge, so how about we move to 10-year intervals to try and cut down on dead years. And I'll be moving to the comments, because I've hit reddits character limit.
submitted by whatif_gaming to footballmanagergames [link] [comments]

Homusubi Analyses All 116 Primaries (AKA the long post), Part 1: Europe and Africa

A few people have gone through all sixty-one voting districts and made their endorsements public, but nobody, so far, has aped the legendary Lacsirax Long Post from the previous season and gone through every vote, even if next week is now primaries-only week. I don't know what possessed me to go through every primary, especially seeing as there are (by my count) one hundred and sixteen of them (yes, there will be over a hundred votes next week),
Let me know if I've missed someone and if there's a primary that I haven't realised is happening. It is equally possible that I've identified a primary that actually won't happen, because the rules for what does and doesn't go into a primary are a bit different from last time (plus, there are more civs). So, for example, I already know that Nasser (modern Egypt) isn't going into the ancient Egypt primary despite having the same five-letter civ name, instead progressing directly to the general.
I reserve the right to change these endorsements if more evidence comes about, especially in the field of AI tests, but I'll be transparent about it if I do (I'll use strikethroughs and so on on my edits instead of just editing things out that turned out to be wrong).
Here goes.
DISTRICT 1
ICELAND
Our first vote is one with a repeat in it, and as you will soon find out, I'm not that keen on repeats. Ingolfur's Iceland, at least, was one of the more entertaining civs in Mk2, though, and made the very most it could out of a frankly terrible TSL. Therefore, unlike other primaries featuring repeats, I won't judge you if you vote for Ingolfur. Nonetheless, I'll be voting for Kristjan Eldjarn, a civilisation from the Cod Wars (no, not Call of Duty, I mean an actual war over the actual fish) with nicely fishy uniques to match.
SCOTLAND
The best Scotland mod is Alba under Alexander III, no question about it. Its uniques are pretty good, with plenty of passive production and naval bonuses that sound useful in a Royale, but what's more, it has input from our resident Scottish power ranker Lordie, and also has an absolutely beautiful colour scheme. AI-wise, it performed semi-decently in the Elimi-Nation AI game before getting voted out in favour of Northern Ireland. The only catch is that Alba might not be in the Scotland primary in the first place due to its separate name. In that case, of the two James VI's, I would recommend voting for LastSword's James, as I've seen the JFD one plenty of times in AI games and it has never impressed me.
DISTRICT 2
IRELAND
Ireland has got far more interesting since the S1 vote, in which there were only two options - contemporaries of each other - and one was disqualified for being in Mk2. We now have four, more diverse, Irelands. I'm not particularly thrilled at the thought of Malachy again or Brian Boru, not least because they didn't actually rule all Ireland even though they claimed to (afaik). Daniel O'Connell is a more interesting choice, an influential politician who never actually ruled Ireland but secured greatly expanded rights for his people, and is also a rather nice shade of blue. However, his AI is pretty lacklustre, which leaves us with Easter Rising hero Michael Collins and his pub UB (not kidding). None of these leaders achieved lasting Irish Unity as some might claim, but either way, I'm voting for Mick.
CORNWALL
I'm quite fond of Hiram's mods. We started modding at around the same time as each other, after all, and it took ages for either of us to learn Lua. Having said that, I don't think I can back him here. His Cornwall, nice colours notwithstanding, is a fairly awkward mixture of uniques that includes a rather incongruous vanilla Celtic UA. Therefore, I'm going for Senshi's Gwendolen, which includes both a rare female leader and plenty of well-integrated tin mine mechanics.
LONDON PRIMARY (UK/BRITAIN/ENGLAND)
My current home region and one of four primaries in which I am fielding a mod. No surprises, then, that I am giving my endorsement here to the wonderful Clement Attlee, living proof that sometimes it's best not to have a strong leader so much as a good one. His historical record and general status as an oddball choice for a Royale leader would make for a decent reason to endorse him on its own, but his AI is at least decent and his uniques are more relevant to a Royale setting than their peaceful economic nature may suggest at first - including a way to use all that gold. If for some reason you hate Attlee and would rather have a more Conservative choice here, I recommend Theresa May, who is in every way the Millard Fillmore of the Isles.
WALES
I am very much struggling to see the difference between the two Waleses, other than slightly more Welsh language used in Glyndwr's unique names than Llywelyn's (which must surely be a good thing). Civ AI Games's archive suggests that Llywelyn has the better AI, though, so I guess I'd go with him.
DISTRICT 3
DENMARK
The AI record of the Denmarks does not show any mention of a universally strong or weak variant, so let's go with history and all the other factors. I'm not the biggest fan of vanilla civs, so I'd rather not vote for vanilla Harald here despite their nice colours, so I'm going to go with Struensee, mainly because he's (imho) a more interesting historical figure than the other two; a doctor who was able to seize unofficial power in Denmark for a time, rather than 'just another monarch'.
NORWAY
The mod I've been working on recently has been quite close to Norway and includes quite a few references to it. Over the course of my research, I've encountered both Olaf II and Haakon VII, and I can think of worse leaders than both. Haakon IV, Mk2's Snoreway, is not really an experience I'd like to go back to. Of the other two, though, Olaf II edges it for me, although I'll be honest, most of that is voting for the modder. In this case, Lungora, best known as the creator of the maps on which the Royales are run.
SWEDEN
Back to politics on this one. Although he does not yet have an AI record that I know of, I'll most likely be voting for Olof Palme here, and hoping that whenever another civ does badly at something, I can do what I normally do and unfavourably compare them to the Swedes. Also, the last time we had a late-20th-century Scandinavian politician leader, it was brilliant. My second and third choices, and my recommendations for an older Sweden, are Karl XII and Birger Jarl, both of whom have excelled themselves in past AI games.
DISTRICT 4
PORTUGAL
How am I to know which Portugal to vote for? There are eight of 'em, and most of share about three names between them! Five of them have unfavourable comments in the CAG archive, leaving me with a choice of Afonso de Albuquerque, Antonia Salazar, and LS's Maria. The latter is city-state based, Salazar depends on whether you like dictators or not, and Afonso seems like a fun civ but not an easy one for the AI to use... y'know what, stuff this, vote for Firaxis's Maria aka the Mad from Mk2. Because why not.
SPAIN
Carlos III is the only Spain which has been campaigned for so far, and is also the only one of the earlier Spains not to have a leader which I've already grown bored of from either Civ 5 or Civ 6. However, RanseStoddard's analysis of AI values suggests that it might not be that good, which would leave us with General Franco. Personally, I'd vote for Carlos, but vote for Franco if you will. Just make sure not to vote for any Spain in the general, because #NeverSpain is way too entertaining to abandon now.
DISTRICT 5
BELGIUM
Leopold II is my choice here, for two reasons. One, because it has had a better AI record than Albert, for a civ which I particularly want to see competitive in the general for the 5th district. Two, because not every mod has the balls to reference Congolese atrocities and chocolate-making in the same set of uniques. You do you, Leo.
BRITTANY
This might be surprising to some, but I'm voting for Anne here. Although Nominoe is a much more polished mod, I haven't seen them do much AI-wise, and their uniques are very much orientated towards human play. So, Gedemo's sole European mod it is.
FLANDERS
Flanders memeage doesn't really dictate which Flanders it has to be - after all, the name is the important thing, so I doubt that the primary here will get as much attention as the general. The AI record favours LastSword's Flanders (Robert III) over JFD's Flanders (Rorbrecht III) while saying nothing about Moriboe's Flanders (Filips van de Elzas). I don't feel strongly about this primary at all, and it's worth pointing out that Robert might have the ability to polder one or two gulf water tiles with his UI, but at the end of the day, i'll vote for Filips van de Elzas. Modder diversity, and a mod I remember playing with a very long time ago.
FRANCE
Mon Dieu, fourteen kinds of France? Luckily, not too long ago there was an AI game which was pretty much nothing but Frances. The winner (spoiler alert, sorry) was Louis XI, who immediately rockets up to near the top of my list. The other standout one for me is Clemenceau, who I like mainly because of the weirdly large amount of First World War-era history I've had to study and thus the soft spot I've developed for leaders from that era. However, that's personal, so I feel more inclined to 'endorse' Louis (and his S-tier UA name, The Universal Spider), even if I might give my own vote to Clemenceau
SWITZERLAND
How are Switzerland mods supposed to fight each other in a primary? They're supposed to be neutral, aren't they? Either way, I'm backing LastSword's Dufour here, because I've seen JFD's plenty of times and its AI has never impressed.
DISTRICT 6
BOHEMIA
Vaclav (JFD's Bohemia) has a mixed AI record, but perhaps the most relevant one in a crowded European setting is its Groundhog Day performance, which was... not great. Therefore, I'm voting for Charles IV. His uniques sound fun - they'll either doom him completely or win him the game, admittedly most likely the former.
CZECHOSLOVAKIA
Didn't we already do th... oh wait, Czechoslovakia. Pretty torn on this one, honestly. Both the Uighur and SabyZ versions have good and bad points on their uniques, and the Uighur one has such a mid-tier AI that I can't even predict whether or not Saby's is better or worse. Uighur's is the only one which conforms to orthodox mod structure (Saby's two uniques are a UB and a UI), but I'll probably vote for SabyZ's Czechoslovakia, purely because I like voting for civs made by CBR fans, and Saby made the previous Czechia.
GERMANY
I want to endorse Merkel. I badly want to endorse Merkel. The trouble is, her uniques make that very hard to do. Her UA is city-state based, and her UU might actually be a debuff for an AI, as she can only use it properly when she purchases it. Her saving grace is the UB, which provides extra production and culture based on events which are common as muck in a Royale. I'm not really feeling it with Wilhelm, despite his WWI connections, because I can't really look at him and think something other than "worse Bismarck". Moving on to actual Bismarck, although the JFD overhaul gives me a way out of voting vanilla, once again, it's city-state based. So I'm back where I started. I'm going to do it. Vote Angela Merkel. Imagine how fun it'd be if she started ruthlessly conquering like mad.
LIECHTENSTEIN
This one isn't even close. Johann I (QQQ) is one of those very old mods made by one-shot modders which might or might not work. Johann II (DuskJockey), on the other hand, is a very new mod with a creator still hanging around the place, and more complicated uniques to boot. Its AI record is mixed, but you can't have everything. Except when you're voting for Kakuei's Japan, of course.
SAXONY
This one's a toughie. On one hand, JFD's Saxony makes tourism actually useful, and has a more Saxon colour scheme. On the other, Firebug's mod makes faith useful, by making cities that look as if, were they given time to build up and get a few faith buildings going, they'd be entertainingly hard to capture. I think I'll vote for JFD's Saxony (Frederick Augustus I), though, as Mitteleuropa is not a forgiving region for late-developing civs, and Frederick Augustus I (aka Augustus the Strong) is the more entertaining historical character.
DISTRICT 7
GENOA
I'm going for LastSword's Genoa here. Why, you ask? Simple. Stronger crossbowmen which can automatically attack when embarked. What with the pivotal importance of the crossbow in many Civ games, and the embarkation-friendly Western Med, that could be a unique that - shock horror - actually does something.
ITALY
This comes down to whether you want to vote for Mussolini because Mussolini, or vote for not-Mussolini because not-Mussolini. It's a personal choice and not one I want to go into because I'm pretty sick of this argument (I'm not going to be disappointed if either wins by a landslide). However, I did promise I'd endorse someone in every primary. So, on the basis of a slightly better AI record (although both are mid-tier) in a difficult TSL, Victor Emmanuel III it is.
PAPAL STATES
Unsurprisingly, all three Papal civs are faith-based. The AI record only mentions one of the three, and so a lot of this comes down to who makes the most use of that faith outside of religion. I'm going with Innocent III, partly because his unique Great Generals make faith a bit more useful in military matters, and partly, of course, because he's the Battle Pope with the decidedly non-turtley AI record. Deus Vult and all that!
ROME
Whoever I pick here, I'm going to make someone angry. So I'll apologise in advance and say that, one, I know embarrassingly little about most of these leaders, and two, my choice isn't based on history. It's JFD's Julius Caesar. This is partly because they have been known to perform very admirably in AI games, unlike most of the other Romes, and partly because their icon and colour combination are very classic Rome and get me into that S.P.Q.R. state of mind more than most of them do.
DISTRICT 8
ATHENS
Ugh, both of these have bad AI records. MC's Athens has the classic colour scheme and is the one probably more familiar to long-time watchers. LastSword's, however, has the more intriguing uniques, including an interesting degree of freedom when researching techs and Civ 6-style cities that aren't coastal but can still build naval units. So LastSword's Athens it is.
AUSTRIA
Austria is one of my favourite vanilla civs, but unfortunately, its star attraction has to do with city-states, which don't exist here. A nifty UU that's one of the few to fall in the Enlightenment Era seals the deal for me, then - JFD's Joseph II it is. It's also yellow and black, for all the history nerds frustrated by the constant use of white and red for Austria in everything despite the precedent.
BULGARIA
Six Bulgarias? Seriously? And quite a few of them have badass UA names to boot. One of them even seems to be led by a Harry Potter character. I'll follow the lead of colour schemes, very snowbally-sounding UAs, and endorsements from ExplosiveWatermelon, and pick Ferdinand I, but this is not a primary I'm sure about my choices in at all.
GREECE
I'm not sure whether or not this primary is going to happen, as one civ is vanilla Greece and the other is an early 20th-century modern Greece. If it does come to this, though, despite their moderate AI record and very peaceful unique set, I'll be rooting for Eleftherios Venizelos, purely because a modern and real-life Greek hero makes a nice change sometimes from most of the civs in this region.
HUNGARY
Another primary in which the AI record becomes king for my decision - my Hungarian friend's favourite leader doesn't have a mod, if I recall correctly - and it's driving me towards Miklos Horthy. The three other Hungaries, which also have less militaristic uniques. The AI record says negative things about three of the civs here, see, and the fourth one is Horthy, who has performed well in Elimi-Nation so far. Another vote for a rather different Mi(c)k to the last one.
ROMANIA
I don't know that much about the Balkans, OK? Please stop throwing primaries at me. Another AI one, then, I guess. Carol I has been entertaining - sometimes successful, sometimes not, but never sleepy - in AI games in the past, so I'm leaning towards him. But again, don't take my word as gospel here, especially seeing as DJSHenninger's Mihai Viteazul has the wonderful UA name The Eagle, Aurochs, and Seven Hills. That's right up there with One Million Elephants and a White Parasol (that's Laos) for the "Best UA Names Involving Random Animals and Objects" competition.
SERBIA
Another AI-performance process of elimination jobby here. Stefan Dusan (Discord emoji loyalty) and Peter I Karadjordjevic (WWI character loyalty) are both net positives for a Serbia civ imho, but this is another example of a civ being beset with bad AI records. The exception, with no record whatsoever, is DJSHenninger's Peter, whom I thus reluctantly endorse.
THEBES
I'm backing LastSword's Thebes here, despite it having the worse colour scheme by some distance. Firebug's uniques, while easier to understand than the competition, are CS-based, and what is more, their performance in Elimi-Nation was decidedly mediocre.
WALLACHIA
The EU4 fans' favourite and home to Dracula, Wallachia has two leaders and three mods to choose from. None of them have a good AI record, other than the mystery Mircea Wallachia with no record, but you can't not vote for Vlad in Wallachia. So of the two we're left with, I'm going with DJSHenninger's Vlad, with its unusual light-green-on-black colour scheme and steamrolly UA with the potential to make enemies adjacent to the vampire army 25 percent weaker by the end of the game.
YUGOSLAVIA
I'm voting for Tito here. It's mainly because I find him to be a more interesting figure than yet another Peter, and because the Non-Aligned Movement is criminally underrated. Don't worry too much about the UA being city-state based, as his UU and UB do not mention them. Seriously though, why would you want a Yugoslavia that isn't Tito?
DISTRICT 9
LITHUANIA
Before I start this write-up, I would like to thank the people of Lithuania for looking at the countries to their south and west, seeing a veritable sea of Peters and Stephens with numbers after their names, and deciding, no, we're giving our monarchs uniquely Lithuanian-sounding names and not repeating them. Anyway, AI. Gediminas's Lithuania seems to have a consistent record of starting out strong but collapsing, so take from that what you will. Vytautas is a unique sort of civ that benefits from having no religions (presumably a reference to Lithuania's unusually long history of paganism) and no city connections. Last but not least is Mindaugas, who doesn't seem to do much with his uniques if he isn't lucky enough to get a religion, so I'm not particularly confident. I think I'll just go with Gediminas. It's the Lithuania we all know and love by now, and at least it tries hard.
POLAND
Twelve! Twelve Polands! Much of this is thanks to the (elected) monarch of this part of the world, LastSword, who has eight Polands under his belt. I know that a fair few people are taking my lead on Japanese affairs, and, grateful for that as I am, it seems only fair to return the favour for other modders with a clear 'capital' to their mod empire. So that's Pilsudski out, despite his being an interesting and impressive historical figure. It has to be an LS Poland. Put all eight above the rest - this is a joint endorsement. As for which one to put first, there was an AI Game of Polands ages ago, but the winner... um, wasn't a Poland. The only one recorded as being a dominant power is John III Sobiesko, a vaguely sciencey cavalry civ. The other two I would prioritise are Sigismund III, the sole blue Poland, whose laissez-faire management promoting UA gives literally free happiness when it's being played by an AI, and which also gets stronger ranged attacks from cities; and Stephen Bathory, who inherits vanilla Poland's strong UA and has strong-sounding musketman and zoo replacements.
DISTRICT 10
FINLAND
I loved Top Kek, but especially seeing as I have already endorsed Olof Palme in Sweden, I wonder if it's time to let the other Finland shine. Mannerheim, hero of the Winter War, makes culture useful in war with unique promotions, and also has a sauna as a UB in true Finnish fashion, which automatically heals all your units trained in a Sauna city every turn. Honestly, even writing this has made me more enthusiastic about Finland, Monty Python/Scandinavia and the World references and all.
RUSSIA (ST PETERSBURG)
Especially if you discount the boring Civ 5/6 leader choices, this primary for me comes down to two choices. Alexander Nevsky can force peace with certain civs by sending three trade routes to them, which could either be very crafty or irritating depending on how the AI uses it. Alternatively, there's Tsar Nicholas II, known to be good with his big carpets and who won a hotly-contested Arctic AI game not too long ago. On balance I'm probably going with Alexander Nevsky, a more historically successful figure and one that makes a nice change from the normal Russias, but feel free to vote for Tsar Nick, especially if you also want a Soviet Russia in the 11th and are anticipating the rematch of the ages.
DISTRICT 11
KIEVAN RUS'
The famous Kievan Rus' mod, Tomatekh's Yaroslav, has a very mixed AI record and one CS-based unique. The unknown challenger, TarcisioCM's Olga, on the other hand, has a set of nifty uniques based around various kinds of diplomatic deals, and they're more useful in an AI game than that sounds. To be honest, Olga sounds like a better AI bet, but I'm an old modder, and we look out for our own. Yaroslav was one of Tomatekh's first mods at a time when Lua modding was in its infancy, and I'll be voting for it so we can be reminded - in the words of Emperor Meiji from The Last Samurai - who we are and where we come from.
USSR
Lenin or Stalin? It's up there with "Mario or Luigi?", "gif or jif?", and "one horse-sized duck or twenty duck-sized horses?". It's a question that's echoed down the ages anywhere with a decent enough communist presence - I say 'decent' because every proper town has one - and now it has come to CBR. However, the historical version of this question is a much deeper one than the CBR version, as the latter essentially boils down to whether or not you want a repeat of Mk2's USSR, which was Stalin. I don't, particularly; I'd be perfectly happy with more Soviets, but that can be achieved without the full repeat. I'm voting for a combustible Lenin that burns life's house down.
DISTRICT 13
BYZANTIUM
I said STOP THROWING PRIMARIES AT ME, BALKANS. Weren't you listening? And this one's Rome all over again. The Lacs Long Post from last time recommends DJSHenninger's Basil II, but the AI record seems to lean more towards JFD's Justinian I. There's also DJSHenninger's Justinian I, not just there to make the last two choices more confusing, but also there because its background is shocking pink, which in my humble opinion is a reason to choose it in itself. Ultimately, though, I'm picking another mod. Although I do like voting for modders in their strongholds, and this is DJSHenninger's, this time I'm going for EnigmaConundrum's Basil II, as this is the more likely of the two of (CBR fan) EnigmaConundrum's mods to qualify. The other one, after all, is an America.
HITTITES
These Middle Eastern regions are irritating for me, because I know that the region has a shitload of history, but I am equally aware that I don't know much of it at all beyond modern times. The Hittites are a prime example of this. I know that they lived near and interacted with ancient Greeks and Egyptians, and that they left behind a decent amount of archaeology, and that's... it, really. So if you know who Suppiluliuma I or Mursili II are and think one's cooler than the other, vote for them. As for me, if I even vote at all in this primary, I'll vote Suppiluliuma I, because Mursili crashed and burned in Elimi-Nation.
ISRAEL
Two Israels, hmm, I'll definitely go for... oh phew, they're both the Biblical sort of Israel. David was the one we had in Mk2, and although he'd be welcome to come back, I wonder if Solomon might be worth a look-in here. If you want more Israeli scouts, Mk2-style, then David is the one to pick, and besides it's quite a nice civ to look at imho. I might go Solomon, though, for his better AI record and not-repeat-ness.
JERUSALEM
Neither has that good an AI record, so I'm going on uniques, not least because even the names of these two are the same but for one having a larger Roman numeral suffix. Baldwin III it is. Its uniques, with their talk of unique 'crusading orders', are reminiscent of a LastSword civ, odd seeing as the LastSword Jerusalem is the other one. Anyway, although Baldwin IV has a lovely white and gold colour scheme, its uniques don't really come into play when there aren't any holy cities nearby (so 95% of the time), so I'm going for the more versatile MC option.
LYDIA
The two Lydias don't have much between them. Neither has an AI record, and all three uniques reference the same things, although the CurlySnail version has more interesting specific effects for the bonuses. It's down to modders, then, and although ryanjames deserves credit for being the creator of the Manx, I'm going for CurlySnail's Lydia, not least because it's clear from the campaigning that he cares about getting his civs in.
OTTOMANS
I feel like I'm going through Death by Mediterranean Primary right now, and the Ottos, with their seven civs to choose from - even after JFD's Mehmed was removed for being an immediate repeat - aren't helping one bit. Being judgemental about AI history eliminates Mehmed V, Mahmud II, and vanilla, but we're still left with four. I'll pick Mehmed II (note, do not confuse with Mahmud II) by LastSword, which at least looks like a strong scientific pick, gaining science when building a military and featuring a semi-liberalised observatory UB.
PHOENICIA
We've reached the Land of Purple, however much these interminable Med primaries are reminding me that Pokemon teaches us that purple means poison. Nonetheless, I'm immediately biased against LastSword's Pygmalion due to lack of violet. That leaves us with the two Hirams, neither of which was made by his modder namesake. Sukritact's Phoenicia underperformed in Elimi-Nation, but has a decent AI record in general, and was responsible for a brief if entertaining game of cat and mouse before their demise in the aforementioned game. I'm still going with the apparently "militaristic" AI of MayorS's Hiram, though, albeit partly because their colour scheme is double purple. Well, pink on purple. Close enough.
UMAYYADS
Last one in the 13th! This one is fairly close, both of them have mid-tier AI and pleasant enough colour schemes. The uniques, too, aren't too far off from one another in quality, but I'm giving the edge to DJSHenninger's Al-Walid I, which can make faith output actually useful by passively spawning military units based on said statistic. Put this in the "I don't know really" pile, though. Al-Malik's looks quite fun to play as, at least.
DISTRICT 14
GEORGIA
I don't want Georgia. Like, seriously, I don't want Georgia. Tamar fans feel so entitled sometimes, especially when the competition in this famously diverse part of the world is so fierce. Abkhazia! The Khazar Khaganate! There are so many better options! Therefore, I'm backing David IV in the primary, mainly to reduce the chances of Georgia winning the general. I encourage anyone else who wants a non-Georgia civ in this district to do the same.
DISTRICT 15
AYYUBIDS
This is another one where I need to search a bit to find excuses to back one civ over another, given that the repeat/not-repeat question is going to loom more over this primary than the actual relative merits of the two Ayyubid civs. Neither has a good AI record. The MC one, which is the one from Mk2, has the nicer colour scheme by some distance (imho), but its uniques are a bit more situational and a bit more dependent on the religion game. Therefore - and this is very much a tentative thing, I know 95% of people will ignore this one way or the other, which sounds OK to me - this is one of the rare times I'll back a repeat, of a civ that we didn't see much of at all in Mk2 at the end of the day. MC's Saladin it is.
EGYPT (ANCIENT)
Ancient Egypt has perhaps the highest "total history:history Homu knows" ratio of any primary in the game. It sounds fascinating, but I still haven't got around to actually learning much about the details yet, especially seeing as there's so much of it. Like, thousands of years. Anyway, I'm deferring to someone who knows better here - in this case, our friendly neighbourhood modding expert, TopHatPaladin - and backing Thutmose, with Djoser a good second. HOWEVER, I know of one effort underway to do a much more comprehensive analysis of this primary, so I might hold back on full-throated endorsements just yet.
EGYPT (PTOLEMAIC)
I'm going with Cleopatra here, because if we're going Ptolemaic, we might as well go the whole way. Yes, she probably doesn't deserve the amount of attention history has given her, but on the other hand, it's good to have a few familiar faces, and I find Cleo less boring than, say, Peter I. Probably because of the RNG biasing towards Russia the few times I played Civ 6. If you want to vote Ptolemy, I'm not going to try and persuade you otherwise.
DISTRICT 16
CARTHAGE
Seriously, I had to google which Carthage it was that was in Mk2. Turns out it was Hannibal, and I don't feel as warmly towards a Hannibal repeat as I would for Saladin or David. So we're down to Didos. So, for once, I'm going vanilla. I'm endorsing Firaxis Dido, because JFD's edited UA, despite being further away from Hannibal than the vanilla one is, seems distinctly unfun with its gobbling up sea tiles in a crowded area.
DISTRICT 18
ASHANTI
Another repeat vs not-repeat primary, and the third one of the many primaries of this category in which I'm endorsing the repeat. Although my top choice in this region is not either Ashanti (Sankara! Sankara! Sankaraaaaaaa!), I can't help but smile if I consider a return of the civ's legendary Pikeman, this time in disembarked form. Vote MC's Osei Tutu for old school gold stool cool.
DISTRICT 19
KANEM BORNU
A lower-mid tier AI and general feeling that Gedemo is underappreciated won't stop me in this case from going with DMS/MC's Idris Alauma in this humdrum primary. It has a slightly-below-average AI record, but it is one with one breakout included, and although its uniques feel rather unpredictable, that's a good thing, surely?
NOK
Again, sorry Gedemo, but I'm going with Ultra's Nok here. I don't know much about the culture, but that's not the point here. Nok is a legend in the modding community, a mod that took so long to come out it became a meme, and then... it actually got released. Let's celebrate that and get it through the primary, shall we? (Not my top choice in the general, but still.) Also, snakes.
NRI
The bombshell here is JFD's Nri UA: civs being unable to declare war on them before the Industrial Era if they share "their" religion. While it's unclear whether that means they have to have founded it or not, that would seriously change the course of the Africa game, especially seeing as they are apparently unlikely to declare wars on their own. Moriboe's doesn't seem militaristic either, despite its UA that sucks population from other civs (again, only in "pre-modern" times), and I feel like taking a bit of a punt on an unusual Africa. JFD's Nri it is.
DISTRICT 21
ETHIOPIA
If Ethiopia has two carbon atoms in it, what's the rest of it made from? ...Chemistry gags aside, there are five Ethiopias, courtesy of DMS, for whom Addis Ababa appears to be something of a centre of power. Of course, I'm immediately going to rule out the vanilla version, which is also a repeat. Likewise, I don't feel enthusiastic about Menelik II, who inherited the vanilla uniques in the DMS split. DMS's Haile might be worth a look with its updated uniques - including the Makonnen triplane, which I keep misreading as Harkonnen triplane - but I think I'm going with Zara Yaqob. She's another female leader, with defensive-religious hybrid uniques that sound like they could be as awkward for would-be invaders as Gudit's were against Zimbabwe. Oh, and if you like Indira Gandhi's colour scheme, Zara isn't too far off.
SOMALIA
I'm leaning towards TopHat's Mohammed Siad Barre in Africa's last primary. To be honest, I don't quite understand some of the uniques of the other Somalia, and although that hasn't stopped me in the past, loyalty to a modder who's helped me out on countless occasions must play a part here, along with an intriguing mixture of naval military, trade, and unique writers, and a rather nice blue colour scheme.
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February Half-Blood Chronicle

As night hit the camp and the campers would return to their cabins they’d notice a stack of papers would be at the doorstep of their cabin. The language was default in Greek, making it easier for the demigods to read, but Spanish, English and Braille copies were available on request.

Camp Half-Blood Chronicle

May The Odds Ever Be In Your Favor

General News

Camp Half-Blood’s got Talent!

This month Su Jin Choi hosted a Talent Show for the campers, which had a decent turn out. Every camper tried their best so give them a big round of applause, won’t you?

Tearful Goodbyes

This month, we unfortunately had to see two campers that were beloved by many leave for greener pastures. Both Hailey Lovett and Andrew Vethos left for the Hunters of Artemis and England respectively. We wish both the best with their new lives wherever it may lead them.

Update: The Heind Chase

The judges have decided who the winners of the Heind chase and the winners are Deklyn Hayes, Tristan MacMillan, and Arthur Morse who had a brilliant plan to trick the deer with illusions. The runner ups are Alice Cinnamond, Flora Bandersen and Sebastian Constantine whose ambush almost went south if not for some quick thinking and sharp vines

Game 4: A Stable Job

Matching the pattern, next in order is the cleaning of the stables. Honestly….this one was the one I dreaded but my sister wanted a pony. Oh well! For this task, we have to clean mountains of shit while dealing with dangerous horses non-lethally. Real fun.

Game 5: Birdemic

The last Game of the Month is the Stymphalian Birds Relay Race! According to Lord Zeus, the remaining events will be based on the Olympic Games. This one is a one team race with a twist....you’re racing against flesh-eating birds. Fun. Let me watch from a safe distance because I’m going to go anywhere near those things, count me out.

Artemis’s Huntresses Welcomes a New Camper

Since time immemorial, Camp Half Blood has existed for one purpose: the training of demigods for the next generation. Chiron, our very activities director has trained many legendary heroes such as Jason of the Argonauts, Heracles, and Achillies. This last month, Camp Half-Blood can add another hero to the long rank of heroes it has trained: Hailey Lovett.
Lovett, a daughter of Circe, is and will always be a hero. Lovett, who had joined camp in January of 2034, almost a year and month later has left to join the Huntresses of Artemis. Huntresses of Artemis are a group of formidable female warriors, who have sworn an oath of maidenhood to be forever young and become maidenservents for the Goddess Artemis. Like their name suggests, these huntereresses travel the world to hunt down mythological monsters. Artemis and her Huntresses also supervised the third Olympic event, the capture of the Ceryneian Hind.
There are so few kids who are 14 and younger. I bet I could count these children on my two hands. It is no wonder that I would try to get close with other campers around my age. Hailey was no such exception. We essentially became best-friends. I made a drastic mistake however, the former counselor of Phobos, Blake Yang, told me to not hang out with Lovett, and I abandoned her. Lovett earlier had accused Yang of being a traitor as camp was embroiled in the Mycenaeans in a timeline that never was. Let the record forever show that I never listened to Lovett’s side of the story. It is something that I regret all my life.
Perhaps one of the reasons I am writing this is to atone for my mistakes. Yes, Hailey will most likely not return to camp, and even if she does, it is unlikely that she will look in the archives of old Camp Half-Blood archives to find this specific article. Yet, the least I could do is help her legacy at camp.
For those who participated in the battle of Manhattan during early fall, you would know it was very chaotic. Perhaps, you might have even seen campers turn on campers with seemingly no logical reason. Lovett’s mother, Circe, who was in her Mycenaean form at the time had manipulated Lovett into sowing discord into Camp Half Blood’s ranks in a way that only Eris would be proud of. I bring this up because some of you might still have lingering concerns of if Lovett was willingly working with Myceneans. Let me dispel all myths about this now: Lovett’s actions were out of her control.
I firmly believe that Hailey will be an amazing hunter. She is courageous at heart, she could create useful potions, and had a kindness that she was willing to show to some people. This is not to say that she was perfect, she had plenty of faults like any one of us. But for those that have any lingering worries, let those dissipate and fall to the wayside.
Everyone here at the Camp Half Blood Chronicle family wishes her good luck as Hailey begins her life as a Huntress. (Mackenzie Lee-Knoton)

Poseidon Poses Possible Problem For Alex Midkiff

On February 16th, Poseidon, lord of the sea hosted the 5th Olympic event, the fifth task of Hercules. Campers were forced to deal with dirty troublesome animals as they cleaned the Camp Halfblood stables that were filled with feces, food, and cobwebs. Armed with shovels, rakes, and implements of destruction, campers took to the task like moths to an open flame.
Though the task was stinky, for the most part, Poseidon and most campers were having a good time. Alex Midkiff, one of the few sons of Hecate present in camp must have been feeling most-resentful at Poseidon for the events that were undertaken by Odysseus and the Mycenaean version of Poseidon. While campers were grouping up, a Mare managed to sneak up behind Alex and bite him in the behind. (A picture showcasing the unfortunate event has been printed to the right of this article.) Alex, after using a quick healing spell and repair spell to undo the damage caused, proceeded to call Poseidon a discount Thanos, based on the antagonist from the immensely popular cult classic movie; Avengers: Infinity War. Let the chronicle now dispense some critically useful advice. NEVER anger a divine being, for they can smite you all the way into next month. At the time of this writing, Alex Midkiff has yet to be smited. (Mackenzie Lee-Knoton)

Music Review: Peter Paul and Mary

During the 1940s when the United States and the rest of the Allies were embroiled in a war against Germany, Italy, and Japan, America had experienced a revival of Folk Music. Performers such as Woody Gutherie, Pete Seeger and the Weavers had created a successful career for themselves.
Following the end of World of War Two, in the booming postwar economy of the 1950s, the Folk revival would soon reach its climax. Folk singers like Joan Baez and Bob Dylan would be listened to around the nation by college students on campuses and in coffee houses. Until the early 1960’s, when the British Invasion began, folk music would be all the rage. More folk bands would form.
Amongst the folk groups that formed, one particular stands out. In an obvious reference to biblical figures Peter Yarrow, Noel Paul, and Mary Travers would form a group in 1961 in New York City called Peter, Paul, and Mary. Despite the British Invasion that happened, Peter Paul and Mary would be immensely popular during this decade. The next year, in 1962, Peter, Paul, and Mary would release their first record Peter, Paul, and Mary which would include “500 Miles”, “Lemon Tree” and Pete Seeger classics like “Where have all the flowers gone?” For seven weeks, the album would be listed in the number one position of Billboard Magazine Top Ten and would go on to eventually sell two million copies.
“Puff the Magic Dragon” was released in 1963, a song about the loss of Childhood innocence based on a poem written by Lenny Lipton that Peter Yarrow put to music. The poem was inspired by both Peter Pan and another dragon poem by Ogden Nash.
Originally written by their friend John Denver, the group’s rendition of “Leaving on a Jet Plane” would go on to be the group’s only number one signle. The band broke up in 1970 for each member to work on their own career (and legal problems for Peter Yarrow, with a pardon by Jimmy Carter later). The band would rarely come together to host reunion concerts in the 1970s. During 1978, a summer reunion tour would be popular enough to get the band back together.
The band would due about 45 concerts a year, however in 2004, Mary Travers would be diagnosed with Leukemia. Unfortunately, following treatment, on September 16th 2009, Mary Travers at 72 would die following complications with her disease. It was also this year that the group would be inducted into Hit Parade’s Hall of Fame.
The group is characterized by soothing guitar accompanied by calming vocal lyrics. Mary Travers had such a wonderful peaceful singing voice. After a long day of training in the Arena or competing in the olympics, one could easily fall asleep after relaxing in bed. The group’s music often deals with powerful issues, hoping to change the world. “Leaving on a Jet Plane” for example is a song about a soldier saying goodbye to his girlfriend before he has to leave for Vietnam.
I would recommend this music group to almost anyone. (Mackenzie Lee-Knoton)

WHO MURDERED JESUS?

It was a sad night for the matchmaking. During the romantic evening, it was revealed that one person’s evening ended in death.
“It was a nightmare,” Coco smiled over a drink. “My type of fun.”
Coco, sarcastic wind nymph, was one of the suspects, among Rora, dryad and environmentalist, Lyn, flowery wolf lover, and Yal, a naiad. The halfbloods each could ask three questions to each to determine who the killer was.
As of publishing, no one has yet figured out who murdered Jesus. However, several halfbloods seem to be sniffing the right leads. Maybe soon this tragic event will be solved. (Jiana Mapleleaf)

Submissions

Ophelia’s Poems

"Mercury"

Listen up, to camp’s first halfblood track
A word filled gurgle, verbal attack
Who is the lucky one to hear my rhyme?
Listen up, y’all it’s Mercury time!
And what’s the real focus of this diss
Hurt some ponies, my God he was pissed
What an idiot, what a shame
Who’s to blame but himself?
Kicked him off the highest mountain
Shove him, shove him in a shelf
Where one stood a boy then there stood a flippin
Full of dissin, hear my spittin, Motherfudging Dolphin
A motherfudging dolphin
I bet that word just spoke for me
So go and boo-hoo at the slowest Mercury

“The Witch”

I am the witch of day’s end,
I weave the webs of the path’s I bend.
I breathe magic as easy as air
It fuels my soul, should I take care
The souls in the wind blow for I
As the trees bow, so does the sky.
I push and pull water, the ocean and sea
The rain is my friend, the wet’s my decree
The water below, lay dead and die
From driest of desert, to the tears I cry.
I let my hands roughen through earth and soil
The night is its rest, the day is my toil
The dust is truth, strength for the weak
And through all the lies, truth I shall seek
I roar in the sun, the light and the fire
My eyes are the flame and my feet are the pyre
The darkness, the smoke, the air, the light
My ashen remains, to see any sight
For I am the witch of day’s end
I weave the webs of the path’s I bend

Romantic Advice From The Matchmaker

Romance. It’s one of the most difficult things for anyone to cope with. One day, your relationship is fine, the next, you’re dumped for a nymph who is hotter then a daughter of Aphrodite. Not to be biased, but you halfblood females really have a lot of competition. Halfblood men too. Nymphs can be men as well. When you want to compete against literal nature goddesses for love, you have to play on their own turf. So, here is a list of five romantic nature places here at Camp Halfblood to take your beloved man, woman, or nonbinary halfblood too.

5 - A date by a waterfall

If you keep following the river upstream, you’re going to find a small lovely waterfall. This waterfall is a perfect place for a secret kiss. Most nymphs avoid it due to a… less than savory individual who resides there.
Nymphs, yes, this is Yal’s waterfall. Don’t inform them.

4 - A majestic rock

Okay, I know what you are thinking. A rock, how boring? This isn’t just any rock. About a mile out from what you halfbloods call Zeus’ Fist stupid name, resides a beautiful blue rock, known as Wind Rock. When the wind hits it right, it sings. Yes, sings. It’s amazing.
Coco, I give you full permission to do your thing.

3 - Wolf’s Cave

This sight is tucked in between the Stables and Wind Rock. It’s a cave that looks exactly like a wolf’s mouth. The most private and beautiful of spots. There is a reason that flower nymphs enjoy this place.
yes, Lyn is a flower nymph. Guys, we have to stick together. No alienating anyone.

2 - The Clearing

You’ve never seen beauty until you have seen this. A clearing in the middle, with a single maple tree. At night, it is filled with fireflies.
Sorry Rora

1 - The Sapling Site

Have you and your loved one talked about having a kid? No need, just come to this place, and you can help a baby nymph have a home by planting trees. Not only is it a beautiful forest, it’s also a beautiful date!
submitted by FFRBP777 to CampHalfBloodRP [link] [comments]

Test post please ignore

The year is 2017. Top scientists have finally cracked the ability to stop ageing, and the world rejoices. The discovery prompts an immediate FIFA investigation into exactly what this means for world football from now on. How will the careers come and go when every team can just preserve their best stars? How will the next Messi break through? The Qatar FA suggest restricting it to only Qatari players, a motion that's only narrowly defeated. In unrelated news, a bunch of mysterious Qatari bank accounts are seized the day before the vote. Eventually, a compromise is decided upon between. Only those players who’ve proven themselves to be in it for the sport, and their team, can use it. The players who have stuck with their team through thick and thin, who’ve turned down bigger money offers to stay where they are. One-Club Men. However, should their loyalty ever waiver, and they choose to leave, those players will lose their right to an everlasting career, and have to face the advance years once again. Who will remain loyal the longest? Who will ride out the lowest of lows to stay at their lifelong club?
Unfortunately for those of you hoping I’ve found a secret miracle, that’s just the best nonsense I could come up with to frame this scenario. In less dramatic terms, using FM 2017, I'm going to select 50 one-club men from the top 5 leagues and de-age them to around 22. Every 5 years I'll de-age them down to 22 again, unless they abandon their loyalty. I'll also be adjusting everyone's contract to expire in 2020 to make it equal, and undoing international retirements where necessary. Nothing overly complicated, but I’m expecting this one to run a long long time if I’m going to have everyone leave, so I’m good with it not being too complicated.
Reddit side note! It's me again. Some may remember my experiments from ages ago. I'm back and writing again, but as you can probably tell, with a new name and website. If you want to see this post with much better formatting, all the images, and everyone's profile at the end, go here to read it in full: link You can stay here if you prefer though!
So who actually qualifies for this? I've restricted it to players from the Top 5 leagues of England, Italy, Spain, Germany and France, and only included those that have been at their clubs the longest. As well as the genuine candidates like Messi and Totti, loaned out players like Lahm qualify, as do those like Iniesta who haven't left in FM 2017, and even those that have left in-game, but are known for their careers at one club. Buffon is a good example of the latter. I've included a link to an image with all 5 players here: link
With all this loyalty around, I wanted to mix it up a bit by adding in one final player. Someone completely opposite to everyone picked so far, the anti-one-club man, the journeyman of all journeymen. And after some research, I came up with the perfect candidate. Sebastián Abreu, a man who in his career has played at an impressive 29 different teams in 11 different countries, setting a Guinness world record along the way. Abreu will receive the same treatment as the loyal players, except it won’t stop when he moves team. I want him to move around more, spread his wings, see how many teams he can collect over an illustrious career.
That’s enough explaining for now. Should be pretty clear what’s going on, just a bunch of footballers never getting old. Time to get things rolling and see who eliminates themselves. Who can stick it out the longest, who will become THE one-club man?

2016/17

With our younger one club men unleashed on the world, many of them attract instant attention from new clubs. For a while it stays quiet and looks like the first transfer window may pass without incident. Only a few loans crop up... until Javi López because the first man to fall. With Espanyol not meeting his standards, he makes a £2.4M trip down the coast to join Valencia. He proves to be the only summer casualty by the time the window slams shut.
January brings the winter window, and the Premier League clubs start to sniff around, ready to throw bags of cash at unsuspecting players. It doesn’t take long before the next two players are reeled in by money and lose their eternal youth. First Marcel Schmelzer in a £20.5M move to Liverpool, followed by Bruno joining moneybags Man City. By the end of the window, Nacho also heads to the north of England, joining rivals Man United. I’m not sure if any of them have realised how damn cold it is up there. That window swiftly ends, settling the bottom 4 finishers in the competition.
Returning to the world of actual football results briefly, and there aren’t many shocks to be seen. Man City finish 6th, Everton get relegated and Borussia Mönchengladbach reach the Champions League Semi-Finals. A few players see their team relegated, as Werder Bremen, Caen and Freiburg go down, so there could be a few casualties once that disappointment has set in. But all in all, the footballing world has coped just fine.
Loyal Players Remaining: 46
Abreu Club Count: 23 clubs in 10 countries
Odd Winners: None

2017/18

With everyone’s transfer budgets warmed up, it doesn’t take long for the action to get back underway. The previous season has barely finished before Chris Solly trades in his morals for a Premier League move to Norwich. Sergio Álvarez joins him in England, making the slightly odd move to Bournemouth before a big £52M move sees Koke trade loyalty for a big move to Man City. That’s the most surprising move so far, as I expected many of the players at top clubs to stick around. The final two transfers of the window take us to sunny Spain, where both Xabi Prieto and Mario become massive glory hunters, trading in their life long clubs for Atletico Madrid and Barcelona respectively. Javi López, having left Espanyol to join Valencia last year, immediately realises his mistake and rejoins Espanyol. It’s too little too late though, his status as a one-club man is already ruined.
The winter window comes and goes without even a hint of action, so things may already be starting to quieten down. Over in Brazil, Sebastián Abreu has his contract with Bangu come to an end after a good season but fails to attract any new suitors before the European season ends.
Around the world, things keep ticking on relatively normally. Watford take a surprising FA Cup win despite finishing rock bottom of the league, meaning they’ll have European nights alongside their Championship campaign. The loyalty of Seube, Höfler and Bargfrede is rewarded, as Caen, Bremen and Freiburg are immediately promoted back to the top tier. Las Palmas head in the opposite direction, which causes David García to hand in an immediate transfer request. The Spaniard could very well be the next player to go.
Loyal Players Remaining: 41
Abreu Club Count: 23 clubs in 10 countries
Odd Winners: Watford (FA Cup)

2018/19

My suggestion that things may be quietening down is immediately disproved by the biggest move so far. Bayern Munich legend Philipp Lahm makes a huge £82M transfer to Manchester City, throwing away all he’d built up at Bayern so far. But it doesn't end there, as 2 more huge transfers are finalised right after. First Claudio Marchisio drops Juventus, clearly not happy with them losing the title to AC Milan, and moves to Real Madrid. Then Daniele De Rossi trades in Roma for Barcelona. Whilst both have moved in real life, I didn’t expect either to fall so early in this, being icons at such huge clubs. A little later, David García makes his predicted move away from relegated Las Palmas, opting to stay in Spain with Osasuna. And then on the final day of the window, one last move. David Zurutuza decides the Premier League is more to his taste and joins Noble at West Ham. Javi López continues his tour of Spain, realising rejoining Espanyol doesn’t earn him back everlasting youth, and so heads to Sevilla instead. Currently, he’s moved around more than the specific journeyman player I chose to actually move around. Talking of, Abreu does find a new contract, heading back to Uruguay to join River Plate Montevideo.
The winter transfer window is again mostly quiet, with very little potential action. There are still some transfers though, as Robin Knoche becomes the 15th person out, heading to Borussia Dortmund. Then a legend moves on, as Iker Casillas decides that barely getting any game time behind Keylor Navas isn’t worth it, and so joins Monaco for a mere £11M. I guess you can't escape the real world after all.
The summer of 2018 means a World Cup, a tournament which regularly creates bizarre results in Football Manager. This year is no exception, as the likes of Italy, Belgium and Argentina fall in the group stages, before South Korea beat both Germany and France in the knockouts. The final between Brazil and Croatia proves 100% less heartbreaking than the real 2018 final for the Croatians, as they become champions of the world. In domestic football, Man United take all the English trophies on offer in a Quadruple, whilst Freiburg find themselves relegated yet again, as do Montpellier.
Loyal Players Remaining: 34
Abreu Club Count: 24 clubs in 10 countries
Odd Winners: Croatia (World Cup)

2019/20

Another season, another transfer window, another set of swirling rumours around our one-club men. Borussia Dortmund manage to steal away another of our competitors from a German rival, taking Timo Horn early in the window. Having been relegated yet again last season, Nicolas Höfler decides enough is enough and leaves Freiburg for Hertha Berlin. Over in Italy, and Chievo Legend Sergio Pellissier finally caves, leaving his relegation-threatened lifelong team for European battlers Fiorentina. But that's all the entertainment I can offer, no big signings this time around I’m afraid. Let's go see what Javi López is up to instead. His merry-go-round of clubs continues yet again, moving over to Deportivo de La Coruña in the latest of his ever-decreasing value of transfers.
January retains its typical bleak and dull atmosphere, with no sign of action whatsoever until the final day of the window. Hugo Mallo decides to try and add to his trophy cabinet and heads to Man United. Not the worst career move to throw away eternal life for considering their dominance right now. And with his departure, the total number of players that we've lost hits a nice round 20.
In the Premier League, Man United claim their 4th title in a row, exerting total dominance over everyone. But where one dominance rises, another falls, with Dortmund claiming the Bundesliga to knock Bayern off their perch. The shock of the season comes in the Coupe de France, where 3rd tier LB Châteauroux knock out Lyon, Auxerre and PSG before falling to Caen in the semi-finals. With Monaco having fallen to 4th tier SA Spinalien, Caen beat an easier opposition of RC Lens in the final, leading to Seube lifting the teams first-ever Coupe de France. Not bad for a player I expected to never lift a trophy. On a less joyous note, Höfler having left relegated Freiburg, sees his new team Hertha relegated immediately too. It seems there is no escaping the 2. Bundesliga!
On the record front, Gianluigi Buffon sets a huge benchmark, breaking the 200 cap mark for Italy. With no-one else close to him, he’ll stay the leader for a long time. Messi also breaks a boundary, climbing through 400 league goals during his career at Barcelona. Like Buffon, he’s way clear of any competitor, and unless a miracle happens that sees him abandon Barcelona, I can’t see anyone catching him soon.
Loyal Players Remaining: 30
Abreu Club Count: 24 clubs in 10 countries
Odd Winners: Caen (Coupe de France)

2020/21

2020 arrives, and with it, two important points arrive too. Firstly, everyone gets de-aged for the first time in this experiment. The 20 that have left get to watch from a distance thinking about what could have been. Second, the initial contracts are set to expire, so anyone that hasn’t re-signed will out the door. Which is exactly what happens to Víctor Valdés. Having barely appeared for Barcelona since his return, he leaves the club on a free and heads to the southern French coast to join Marseille. A day later and someone else leaves France, as Romain Danzé who decides one de-ageing is enough and moves to Schalke. Tony Hibbert also struggled for games at Everton despite his new youthful look, and so he walks out the door. He opts for Aston Villa, who to my great surprise have sunk to a mid-table League 1 team. Feeling left out, Spain joins in, with Oier Sanjurjo departing Osasuna and moving to Villarreal. The window is then capped by a bizarre final free transfer. Despite appearing regularly, Xavi isn’t offered a new contract by Barcelona. Man City can’t quite believe their luck and snap up the Spanish wizard a few days before the window shuts.
Winter brings with it just one transfer in its usual action-heavy way. Roberto Torres leaves Osasuna, making a £35.5M switch to Atletico. I’m not sure whether Atletico thought they were getting a different de-aged Torres because that can only be described as an overpayment. Either way, that means we've now lost over half the competitors.
Euro 2020 passes, and Croatia prove their World Cup victory was no fluke, becoming both champions of the World, and champions of Europe. On the Continental front, things have been fairly predictable so far, at least until this years Europa League. Hoffenheim escape a tough group and go all the way to win the entire thing. Not bad for a team that barely qualified in the first place. Oh, and Messi wins a little thing called the Ballon d’Or for the 10th time. I think he’s only just getting started.
Loyal Players Remaining: 24
Abreu Club Count: 24 clubs in 10 countries
Odd Winners: Hoffenheim (Europa League)

2021/22

The 21/22 season begins with two transfers on the first day. Loïc Perrin makes his way to the Premier League to join Leicester. But that's a minor splash compared to the other move, as after 768 appearances and 302 goals, Francesco Totti leaves Roma. It seems wrong to see it, but he’ll now be wearing a Man United kit. Dortmund continue their run of stealing loyalty, this time bringing Tony Jantschke into the fold. Another contract is run to the end, forcing Álex Bergantiños out of Deportivo without much choice, before being picked up by Cagliari. Mikel González opts to end his time at Real Sociedad, joining Pellissier over at Fiorentina. And as August comes to a close, it looks like Totti may be the only big departure. That is until Gianluigi Buffon decides to call time on his Juventus career. It’s an odd move, with the legend going sorta sideways from a regular starting Juventus spot to Bayern Munich. But there’s no going back now, as his 636 league appearance career with the Italians comes to a close. Two legends down in one window.
No season is complete without a single winter signing to warrant an entire separate paragraph, and this season is no different. Sergi Roberto moves away from Barcelona, in a £24M move to French giants PSG. A good way to guarantee yourself plenty of titles I guess. Abreu also makes a winter move, adding Guarani in the Brasilian second tier to his collection.
Roberto’s decision proves to be a good one, as PSG go on to claim their 10th one in a row. Not many surprises elsewhere, although Real Oviedo get close to pulling off a shock in the Copa del Rey. The second tier team beat Osasuna, Barcelona and Sevilla on the way to the final, but ultimately Real Madrid prove a step too far. Elsewhere everything is won by a team you’d probably expect. Exciting stuff.
Loyal Players Remaining: 17
Abreu Club Count: 25 clubs in 10 countries
Odd Winners: None

2022/23

With the pool of players rapidly decreasing, very few of the crew are even wanted by other clubs anymore. Perhaps deterred by their steadfast loyalty? A few moves do still happen though, so we’re not dead yet. Firstly Anthony Lopes gets fed up of PSG dominating his league and moves to AC Milan for a better shot at a trophy. It’s not long before that story is forgotten, as the biggest transfer fee in the competition so far is dropped. Andrés Iniesta is stolen away from Barcelona, in a huge £86M move to Man United. The midfield maestro fell 2 appearances short of 600 league games for Barcelona, but with his new £300K per-week contract it’s not hard to guess why. That proves to be all the action for the summer window, with no-one willing to top that huge move.
After half a season of hearing their noisy neighbours gloating about their star signing, Man City snap. And if there’s one thing City are good at, it’s splashing the cash. In probably the easiest negotiation over fee Barcelona has ever had, Sergio Busquets makes a £95M move to the sky blues. Yeh, that’ll show United. Once again no-one wants to get in the middle of the awkward Manchester squabble, and the winter transfer closes with a whimper.
The second World Cup of this experiment comes and goes. This time all the giants make it safely through the Group Stages, but it’s Africa that really excels. Morocco make the knockouts, Egypt battle through to the Quarter Finals, but Nigeria come out best. They beat South Korea and Argentina before falling valiantly to France in the Semi-Finals. A 1-0 victory of Italy does see them finish in an impressive 3rd place, becoming the first African team to finish in the top 3 of the World Cup. France win the title on penalties after a deceivingly action-filled 0-0 draw with Spain. The domestic scene follows that with a similar lack of real shocks. In the Carabao Cup, Bournemouth beat Arsenal, Chelsea and Man United on the way to lifting the trophy. But it’s the lesser Cup, so outside of Bournemouth no-one really cares. PSG finally have their grip on the Ligue 1 broken, as Casillas leads Monaco to a fantastic title. Otherwise, all the league titles and cups fall to teams you’d expect them too. Another thrilling year.
Loyal Players Remaining: 14
Abreu Club Count: 25 clubs in 10 countries
Odd Winners: Bournemouth (Carabao Cup)

2023/24

Literally nothing happens. Thomas Kessler decides that no team can ignore his existence for 20 seasons in a row and get away with it, leaving Köln to join Trabzonspor. So as I said, literally nothing happens. Even Javi López moving to yet another club would be more interesting than that.
The same applies to the footballing season. Asides from Casillas captaining Monaco to a Champions League title, or Atletico winning the title again, exactly 10 years after their last win, everything is frustratingly normal. And even those two events are hardly shocks.
Before I start to lose hope, there are a few interesting moves over the last few years from the losing group that are worth highlighting. First season mover Bruno didn’t make the impact he hoped and found himself moving to the lovely Stoke. Robin Knoche barely received any playtime at Dortmund and found himself cast out to Dinamo Zagreb. Even in League 1, Tony Hibbert could barely get any game time at Villa and so moved on the Scunthorpe in League 2. But the winner of the oddest move has to be Zurutuza, who somehow manage to pull off a move to Liverpool after West Ham found themselves relegated, only make a few disappointing performances, before being released on a free to join Al-Arabi in Qatar. Not quite the career he was anticipating when joining the Premier League I bet.
Loyal Players Remaining: 13
Abreu Club Count: 25 clubs in 10 countries
Odd Winners: None

2024/25

The summer transfer window arrives for another season, and with it finally comes a huge deal! Javi López has found yet another club! Hooray! As for actual competitors, absolutely no movement whatsoever. Even from Abreu, who’s been at Guarani for 2.5 years now. Manceau, Lewington and Seube complain to their managers about playing time or relegation, but none of them actually make a move anywhere. So our final 13 will add another 5 years onto their career length.
There are some fun statistics from our 51 worth mentioning at this point. Buffon leads the way with both total league appearances (935) and international caps (259). His caps are at a point where they’re too high for the game to display, as the value is stored as an unsigned 8-bit integer, and so has rolled over to just show 3. Most appearances for a single club goes to Dean Lewington however, who thanks to being a regular sits at 857 league appearances for the MK Dons (or 889 if you include Wimbledon). In the goals department, the winner is obvious. With almost 500 league goals, 100 international goals and 14 Ballon d’Or awards, Messi sits on top of everyone. On the international scene, he’s run close by Müller and the fast-approaching Kane, but for league goals, it’s not even close.
2024 brings with it a Euro tournament, which doesn’t provide much in the way of surprises, but brings with it some exciting high scoring matches. All ending in a 4-3 victory for a Thomas Müller led Germany over neighbours Netherlands. Which I’m sure went down very well. The domestic scene decides to spring a few shocks though. In Serie A, Roma claim an impressive title thanks to main striker Iheanacho, their first since 2001. The German and French cups provide surprise winners, in the form of Hertha Berlin and Dijon. Both cap an impressive run by beating their respective league winners, Bayern and Monaco. Even the continental tournaments turn up too. First Monaco cement their place as a top power in football by winning their second Champions League in a row. That coming a week after the best win there could possibly be. Tottenham win the Europa League! Screw the other stuff, that last part is all I need!
Loyal Players Remaining: 13
Abreu Club Count: 25 clubs in 10 countries
Odd Winners: Dijon (Coupe de France), Hertha Berlin (DFB Pokal)

At this point though it’s fair to say that the competition results are more interesting than the movements of the players. Which is the perfect signal that things need to speed up a little bit. So from now on, updates will be every 5 years, which lines up perfectly with player age resets, letting us see who has made it to the next checkpoint.

2025-2030

Another round of de-ageing hits, and you’d think that would incite some interest in our final 13. Instead, it’s a ghost town. We do have an immediate dropout though, as Nicolas Seube finally gets fed up with his lack of playtime at Caen and heads for Panionios in Greece. A year later the situation is repeated. I’m not entirely sure what his unhappiness was about, but Iker Muniain decides he’s had enough of Athletic Club and moves to Hamburger SV. At least he left on exactly 100 goals for Athletic though, a nice round number. With 11 left, a standoff to reach the top 10 ensues. For 3 years no-one budges in their show of loyalty, until in 2029… Dean Lewington leaves for Derby County on a free. It’s a huge move, with Lewington becoming the first man to break through 1000 league appearances for a single club before leaving. But he’s moved on now, and it won’t be long before that record is broken. That move means we’re left with our final 10 contestants. Terry, Iraola, Messi, Susaeta, Noble, Jourdren, Müller, Kane, Manceau and Bargfrede have secured a top 10 spot, and now all that’s left to do is fight it out for number 1.
Over in Brazil, our anti-one-club man continues his journey, although it remains in Brazil for the moment. Only 2 clubs are added to his count, with a long stay at Atletico Goianiense followed by a £2M move to top tier Coritiba. I’m kind of hoping he starts to make enough waves in the Brazilian league to move to Europe and add some new countries to his history.
Those that fell before the first de-ageing are retiring, finishing off their magnificent, or in some cases very un-magnificent, careers (as losers). Javi López finishes his fine anti-loyalty tour around Spain with 7 transfers to his name. Schmelzer, Nacho, Solly, Álvarez, Koke, Mario, Prieto, Marchisio, De Rossi, David García, Zurutuza, Knoche, Höfler, Pellissier, Mallo, Horn and Hibbert end their careers. Many, such as Nacho, Horn and De Rossi stay just as committed to their new clubs as they did their old, finishing out their careers after just a single transfer. Of the pensioners, Sergio Pellissier manages to rack up the most career league appearances and goals, at 894 and 246, although that’s largely thanks to a huge head start. De Rossi dominates on the international scene, earning a whopping 197 caps over his 30-year career. Naturally, all those records will be blown out the water once the next group start retiring, but it’s nice to have some benchmarks.
Around the world, plenty has gone on worth hearing about. The Netherlands claim their first-ever World Cup win, beating Brazil in the final, whilst in the Euro’s Germany win their second tournament in a row. The Gold Cup throws up a few interesting results too, as first, the Mexico B team win it, with their A team tied up in the Confederations Cup. Then 4 years later Canada take the title, only the second time in their history. Over in Italy, Lazio find themselves relegated as the league starts to shake itself up a bit. But other than that, domestic football remains relatively unspectacular. Oh except… TOTTENHAM WINNING THE LEAGUE. Didn’t even have to reset it and we won it before Arsenal did. North London is very much Lilywhite now, suck it Gooners!
Loyal Players Remaining: 10
Abreu Club Count: 27 clubs in 10 countries
Odd Winners: Tottenham (Premier League)

2030-2035

Another 5 years pass and to start with it looks like the top 10 are going to hold firm. Eventually though, the temptation of money proves too much for one man. That man is Geoffrey Jourdren who trades in his starting slot at Montpellier for a cosy backup contract at PSG. Then comes… dead silence. Not even a rumour, or an unhappy player. No-one even hints at leaving for the next 4 years, which means we end the period with nine players on the books. The real waiting game has begun. Even our journeyman Abreu is moving in a very slow way, as a five year Coritiba stint finishes with a free transfer to Red Bull Brasil. I think my hopes for a European move have died.
At least there are a lot of retirements to run through. Bruno, Lahm, Casillas, Valdés, Danzé, Oier, Xavi, Torres, Perrin, Jantschke, Bergantiños, González, Roberto, Iniesta and Busquets hang up their playing boots. That does leave us without some noted legends, with Lahm, Casillas, Iniesta and Busquets reaching 200 caps for their country. You’d think Spain would have won more with that golden generation. Casillas and Xavi also both hit 1000 league appearances thanks to a strong head start before the experiment. But it’s Andrés Iniesta who is the most loyal of the bunch, racking up nearly 600 appearances for his original club before departing.
Five years leaves plenty of time for interesting results once again. England take a World Cup win, which is always a sign of the apocalypse, only made more bizarre by Scotland making the semi-finals in the same competition. Portugal take the other title in that period, whilst the Euros also see a surprise winner in Switzerland. France provides the biggest shock at club level, as Lille come from nowhere to win Ligue 1, and then immediately revert back to mid-table once again. Otherwise, the time belongs to Manchester City. The oil bar… sky blues take 4 out of 5 titles in both the Premier League and Champions League, with all that cash flinging finally paying off.
Loyal Players Remaining: 9
Abreu Club Count: 28 clubs in 10 countries
Odd Winners: England (World Cup), Lille (Ligue 1)

2035-40

With just nine players left, once again we get a transfer fairly early on in the period. Early as in the first transfer window, which makes me wonder why they waited so long. Anyway, Mark Noble has had his patience tested by West Ham’s yoyoing between the Premier League and Championship a bit too much and finally caves. He makes a £20M move to Burnley, who… are doing the exact same thing. Not sure that was the brightest idea. Like the previous 5 years though, one transfer is all we get. None of the others move, despite some pretty heavy unhappiness from Bargfrede and Manceau. Abreu keeps up his trail, running out his contract with Red Bull Brasil and opting for Chapecoense to reach 29 clubs in his career.
With very few moving recently, that also means less and less are retiring, as just 7 ex-competitors leave the game. Totti, Buffon, Lopes, Kessler, Seube, Muniain and Lewington call time on their football life. The fact they all stuck with it for so long means there’s so impressive stats between them. Totti racked up 1154 league appearances, with 768 at Roma. Dean Lewington, after leaving MK Dons with 1003 appearances finished with a total of 1287. Italian legend Gianluigi Buffon finished with a whopping 1307 league appearances, but perhaps more impressively, 334 international caps. But the single most surprising statistic goes to Thomas Kessler. Despite barely playing in Germany he manages to notch a grand total of 7 goals after his move to Turkey. Maybe if he’d been a striker he’d have actually played at Koln. Oh and Seube ends his career Greek. Because why not.
As per every time, a quick look around the world’s results is needed. Spain win back the World Cup titles, whilst Italy take a Euro win. Argentina, Mexico and Australia claim all their continents international trophies in the window, so no massive surprises there. The domestic world isn’t exactly littered with shocks either. Brescia win a Coppa Italia, and Nîmes Olympique grab 4 top 5 finishes in a row in France, but there’s not really much to shout about. I think it’s best to just get on with the next de-ageing.
Loyal Players Remaining: 8
Abreu Club Count: 29 clubs in 10 countries
Odd Winners: Brescia (Coppa Italia)

2040-45

Down to 8 now, so it’s getting tougher. And a lot slower, so slow in fact that not a single transfer in our group happens in five years. For a moment I was excited to see Manceau at Recreativo de Huelva, but that was just a loan. So I was back to being crushed. On the plus side, Abreu makes some huge steps. He adds not just 1, but 2 new countries to his history! The first is Portugal, in a huge step up to join Braga. As usual, it’s just until his contract ends, before he moves on to Frankfurt in the Bundesliga. He’s hardly setting Europe alight but I don’t care, he’s actually moving!
There’s only one retiree to talk about too, as pretty much everyone has already gone. Geoffrey Jourdren finishes up with 925 total league appearances. It probably could have been a bit more, if he’d not spent 10 years of his career being a backup at PSG and Bayern. On a far more interesting note, Terry breaks through 1500 career league appearances. Kane also hits 256 international goals, which results in the number resetting to 0 just like caps. So the game has him on 96 caps with 11 goals, when the actual numbers are a stunning 352 caps with 267 goals.
Having seen my disappointment last time around, the world decides to liven things up. Denmark become both Champions of the World and Champions of Europe in 2042 and 2040, although they lose the European title to Germany 4 years later. At the continental level, the Champions League stays on track, but the Europa League brings some bizarre winners into the mix. Nîmes Olympique, Real Sociedad, Leicester and Bristol City all win a trophy. It seems Mark Noble finally made a right move transferring to Bristol City, as the club is now a strong top 6 Premier League side. Manceau wins a Coupe de France at Angers, but it’s still Nîmes making waves, forming a big three with PSG and Monaco. It may not be long before either Nîmes or Bristol City win their league, which is not something I expected to be saying.
Loyal Players Remaining: 8
Abreu Club Count: 31 clubs in 12 countries
Odd Winners: Nîmes Olympique/Bristol City (Europa League), Angers (Coupe de France)

2045-50

2045 kicks off and once again Manceau deceives me. This time it’s a loan spell in Denmark with Brøndby that had me thinking he was gone. Well you know what they say, fool me once shame on you, fool me twice… I’m probably gonna fall for it. It looks like there’s going to be no moves whatsoever once again, until June 2047 arrives and I notice a contract is set to expire. Imagine my shock when Lionel Messi is not offered a contract by Barcelona and is let go. It’s made doubly worse by the fact that of all teams to pick him up, it's Atletico Madrid. Apparently, 37 Ballon d’Or awards aren’t good enough for Barcelona anymore. I don’t even care that nothing else happens. That’s enough to stun me.
Over in the retirement home, Mark Noble moves into a room. After an up and down career, the Englishman did manage some silverware with Bristol City and ended his career with 1317 league appearances. He even earned not just 1, but 90 England caps across his 44-year career.
Around the world, interesting results are still cropping up. England grab their third World Cup win beating Colombia, whilst Honduras win their first-ever Gold Cup. Much to my bitter disappointment, Arsenal win 4 of the 5 Champions Leagues on offer, as well as 3 Premier League titles. Chelsea have a period of bottom 10 finishes which deeply upsets Terry, whilst over in France, Chamois Niortais begin to try and join the top 3. Don’t worry I’ve never heard of them either.
Loyal Players Remaining: 7
Abreu Club Count: 32 clubs in 12 countries
Odd Winners: Honduras (Gold Cup)

2050-55

With the world still reeling at the fact the Messi has moved from Barcelona, everyone kinda forgets to make any moves. In fact, Messi is the first person to move yet again, leaving Atletico in a very cheap 34.5M move to Man City. Which is more in line with where I originally expected him to go. Abreu finishes one contract, at Hapoel Be’er Sheva, and moves onto the next, but it’s with Monterrey so doesn’t count. Sebastian, it has to be new clubs. John Terry is starting to get frustrated with a Chelsea team that has really fallen from grace. The Londoners barely survive relegation in 2052/53, so Terry may be the next to go. Or maybe I know nothing and it’s completely random.
No-one retires this year, so let’s take a brief look at some statistics of our remaining 7 + Messi. All our players have now reached 1000 appearances, with Bargfrede in last at 1173. Messi has crossed 1000 league goals, now a full 300 clear of the chasing pack of Abreu and Kane. On the international level, Thomas Müller becomes the first player to need a rollover of caps twice, moving on to a massive 524 international caps. But it’s Kane who still leads the international goal stat, nearly breaking 350, a full 50 ahead of the German.
Müller does, however, grab a World Cup win for Germany so I’m sure he won’t be too upset. At least until they’re deposed by Holland 4 years later. On the continental level, Bristol City win another Europa League title beating previous champions Espanyol. Middlesbrough also nearly earn a trophy, having joined Bristol as a top 6 team. But the winner of the biggest shock, although I did say this might happen, goes to Chamois Niortais, who topple the dominance of PSG and Monaco to capture a miraculous Ligue 1 title in the last season of the period.
Loyal Players Remaining: 7
Abreu Club Count: 32 clubs in 12 countries
Odd Winners: Chamois Niortais (Ligue 1), Bristol City/Espanyol (Europa League)

2055-60

The summer window of 2055 opens and as I warned may happen, there’s an almost immediate transfer. Fed up with Chelsea’s mediocre finishes, John Terry decides to move on. Unfortunately for Chelsea fans, Arsenal is his next club, which I’m sure will cause a few shudders. A year later and another move comes around, once again due to unhappiness over the club’s performance. Surprisingly it's Thomas Müller,who's annoyed by the fact that Bayern haven’t won a Bundesliga title since 2048, and so runs down his contract. Leverkusen almost earn his signature, but eventually its the glory of PSG that proves too much to resist. But we’re not done there! Another player runs down their contract, opting to move to Vitoria de Setubal in Portugal. Vincent Manceau finally makes a real move rather than constantly faking me out. So with another 3 players down, we’re left with our final 4. The race for the top 3 is hotting up now!
We do have a retirement this time thanks to the transfer window livening up. The world's best-ever player, Lionel Messi, retires from football. He ends up on a total of 1858 league appearances, scoring a massive 1068 goals in this time. 1430 appearances and 895 goals of those belonging to his 45-year career at Barcelona. On the international scene, he earned an impressive 505 caps and 276 goals. But it’s the awards where he shines. 279 individual awards, 82 team titles, 22 league titles, 6 Champions League titles, 45 Ballon d’Or awards. What makes it even crazier is 41 of those Ballon d’Or awards were in a row, as he earned every single one from 2015 to 2056. I don’t think I’ll see another player like that crop up in any save, truly the world’s best player.
Looking out on the world, I can say that it’s a Chamois Niortais player that breaks Messi’s streak, as the French team claim another two Ligue 1 titles. It’s hard to say they’re a “surprise winner” at this point. Bristol City finally make the full step up to join the big guns, winning 3 Carabao Cups, 1 FA Cup, 2 Premier League titles and even a Champions League trophy. If any Bristol City fans want this save to give themselves hope over the future, I can send it over. Internationally it's the era of Portugal, as they claim both the Euro and World Cup trophies.
Loyal Players Remaining: 4
Abreu Club Count: 32 clubs in 12 countries
Odd Winners: Bristol City (Premier League/Champions League), Lyon (Relegation)

With so few players left, now is probably a good time to speed it up once again. The final four will be tough to budge, so how about we move to 10-year intervals to try and cut down on dead years. And I'll be moving to the comments, because I've hit reddits character limit.
submitted by sonnorcteer to mscalstest [link] [comments]

Juventus vs Torino Live Betting Picks  Serie A Picks ... England vs Italy (1-2) 14.06.14  Group D World Cup 2014 Preview Sampdoria vs Cagliari Free Football Prediction (7-15-20) Italy Serie A Soccer Pick & Betting Odds Eurovision 2010-2017 - Biggest Differences Between Betting Odds and Actual Results #ESC2018 Inter Milan vs Torino Free Football Prediction (7-13-20) Italy Serie A Soccer Picks & Bet Odds

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