So after my first foray into football management in this virtual world of FM19 and my first attempt at blogging here on Strikerless, it was time to undertake a more challenging club role.
I looked around the globe to find a club that had in my opinion always underperformed and that would be a real challenge of mine ( & Guido’s) skills to turn into a powerhouse of both their domestic league & continental competition. I wanted a club that had never won their league but had an interesting story to tell.
I was torn between the Far East and the heavy investment pouring into the likes of the Chinese Super League and the more established leagues around Europe, when I stumbled across the famous name of Ajax but in South Africa?!? Surely I was mistaken?
A quick visit to the web & my new project was confirmed ….
I first really grew an interest in Ajax when in 1987 I saw this beauty –
Call it poor taste on my behalf ( or the kit manufacturer) but I just had to know more. By the end of the season the Netherlands had defeated the Soviet Union to lift the only trophy of their history in Euro 1988 with the likes of Marco Van Basten & Ruud Gullit becoming household names across the world. Former Ajax striker Van Basten scored one of the best goals I have ever seen & further cemented my love for what was happening in the Dutch game.
Rinus Michels the pioneer of “Total Football” in the 70’s and named ‘Coach of the Century’ in 1999 was the mastermind behind the Dutch success, and he had spent his whole playing career at Ajax Amsterdam as well as coaching them on 2 occasions. Learning all about his influence on the game from the 70’s fascinated me & being lucky enough to see the dominance of Ajax Amsterdam throughout the 90’s with their flair and fluid football gripped me & like for many others, made them one of my favourite European teams to follow.
Ajax Cape Town FC
I won’t spend too much time on the history of Ajax CT as i covered it in the first article, but the affiliation started in 1999 as Ajax Amsterdam looked to expand their worldwide talent feeder network to South Africa. The club has never won the league in its history so meets the criteria that I wanted, and with only 2 winners of the CAF Champions League coming from South Africa that is something that I will be looking to change.
It’s facilities are great with the Cape Town Stadium being the club’s base since 2010 following the World Cup but what really gripped me was when I read the club’s website & read their mission statement which I felt really summed up what I wanted from the next stage of my FM save and was something that would challenge both Guido & I to fulfil these philosophies & bring the club success at the same time.
So, the challenge begins from now. This is going to be a long term save as primarily we need to get the club promoted back to the ABSA Premiership. In the next article we will explain the plan setting out the vision & values from both mine as the Head Coach & Guido as the Director of Football. I am looking to devise my own unique tactic based on a famous logo shape that is linked to the nickname of the club, so I hope you join me for that.
Hope you’re enjoying the read!