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FM 23 - Party at the Palace - Season 8 Part 1

Welcome back to the Party at the Palace. If you haven't caught any of the previous posts, you can start from the beginning here.


Right, let's get to the start of the new episode.

 

This is the season that we finally find ourselves at the top European table as we participate in the Champions League for the first time in the clubs history.


We qualified after our historical win in the Europa League and our League form is still under the microscope as we stumbled to ANOTHER 8th place last season.


Our Champions League win coupled with retaining the FA Cup glossed over what I would describe as a disappointing league campaign.


Lets move into the new season and check out what has been going on at Selhurst Park.

 

Club Updates

Transfer Spend Update


The net transfer spend of last season was released and we were one of only 2 clubs who made a profit.

Transfer profit of £31 million whilst still competing for cup honours and is a fantastic achievement and shows we are playing the transfer market very well, finding bargains and polishing diamonds. Its going to secure the future of the club and help us progress and improve on and off the field.

 

Another positive update came from our new average attendance as the works on the stadium were completed last season.

Lets hope we can convince the board to further develop Selhurst park to keep this upward trend going.


Obviously larger crowds bring more match day revenue and we find ourselves creeping up the table here too.

These are all very positive off the field developments.

 

Supporters Group Update

The fascinating part of the graphic for me is always the "Season ticket Holder Waiting list" , In my mind this means that we are missing out on 59k season ticket holders due to the size of the stadium.


I am going to put pressure on the board to rectify this!

 

Expectations

The board are still only looking for a Top Half Finish shows a I may be looking to over achieve but we must be looking to get into the top 6.


The rest seems fair and I am sure we will be in favour with the board come the end of the season.

 

Transfer Activity


Lets start with the departing Players.

There are a few first team players listed here but no more Important that Ebere Eze. Having been with us since the start some may question the decision to let him go to a league rival.


He was coming towards the end of his prime and was quite a large chunk of the wage budget. £50 mil is something still not to turn your nose up at and we can bring in one or two to replace him.


Add that to the other squad players departing and we are looking at another £70 million into the bank.


Now for the incoming players.

Lets have look in detail at the new recruits.


Komi Takougnadi joins us from Bayern Munich. An exciting young German Right winger he will be fighting to the starting places with another newbie who we will be introducing shortly.






Vincent Sjoberg joins us from FC Kobenhaven. Not our first signing from the Danish side and if Sjoberg can reach half the potential of Roony Bardghji then we have a decent player on our hands. He will spend this season back on loan in Denmark for his development.



Achraf Ddaou joins us from AZ Alkmaar. He could be classed as the marquee signing of the summer having splashed £52 million on him. He's naturally a Left winger but we will look to utilise him on the right cutting in from the wing.





Andrew Kun Wah lee joins us on loan from Man City. An able back up for Patterson at right back. With no obligation to buy its a free swing on a player who is highly though of at Man City.







Maksim Grdenic joins us from Dinamo Zagreb. A classy defensive midfielder who will offer strength in depth in the holding role in midfield. An exciting acquisition indeed.







 

Pre Season

This pre season had a different feel to it as alongside out traditional forst team tour we also had appearances in the Community Shield and European Super Cup.

A perfect pre season in terms of results and fitness. Just what we needed.


The Community was up next as we, the FA Cup winners face the Premier League Winners Arsenal.

A straight forward win for Arsenal with very little impression made by us on the game.


We then roll onto the UEFA Super Cup where we as the Europa League winners face Champions League winners Tottenham Hotspur.


Its back to back final defeats. Not the ideal start to the season we were looking for.

 

August 2029


We start the League campaign with one of the hardest runs I've seen for a while. Games against Chelsea, Arsenal and United to start off the season! Its a tough ask but we need to get something from these games.

We started of brilliantly with an emphatic win at home to Chelsea followed by a tight defeat to Arsenal away.


We were then humbled by United who showed no mercy at Selhurst park. A difficult start indeed.


We were then treated to the Draw for the Group phase of the Champions League

Well this really is where the big boys play! Look at those fixtures!

 

September 2029


September brings a favourable run of fixtures in the League with the small matter of a trip to Paris to take on PSG in the Champions League.


Lets cover the Premier League first.

A lot better! an unbeatable month with plenty of the new faces getting on the scoresheet for the first time. A very positive month in the Premier League.


Its time for our debut in the Champions League, this really is the big time!


Just the small matter of a trip to Paris.

Its a learning curve for sure. PSG were just too good and we had no answer for them.

 

October 2029


We roll into October with some wind in our sails. The domestic form really took an up turn during September after our rocky start against some of the better teams in the league. Lets see what October had to offer.

Its another unbeaten month but this one is definitely less spectacular. There are some missed opportunities, especially against Leeds as we concede in the 94th minute.


We move back into the Champions League and we have two games to contend with this month. We welcome Spanish giants Atletico Madrid to Selhurst Park and we travel to Denmark to face AGF, which is by far our easiest game of the group phase.

Well we have arrived in the competition! That result against Atletico was special, beating a big team like that at home will be remembered.


A routine win in Denmark put our top 8 ambitions really back on track.

 

November 2029


We were average in the Premier League and fantastic in the Champions League during October and we need to start finding some consistency across both competitions.


Although unbeaten in 7 games in the league the three draws last month saw us lose pace with the leaders.

Well the unbeaten run is over but we get some wins on the board which is massive for the confidence and the momentum going into the chaos that is December.


We have another 2 Champions league games to go too with a trip to Germany to Play Bayer Leverkusen before welcoming Juventus to Selhurst Park.

Crystal Palace are turning heads in the Champions League that is for sure.


We ground out a fantastic result away in Germany and put on a show for the home fans to edge out Juventus in a classic. That's 4 wins from 5 in the Group Phase of the Champions League and sees us with a massive chance of progressing.


November also saw our Youth intake preview. This has been a slightly disappointing part of this journey with not very many players making the grade but I am always hopeful.

Looks promising with some possible additions coming into the centre of the park. Heres hoping we've got a wonderkid on our hands.

 

December 2029


Ahhhhhhh the chaos of December. 7 games in the Premier League and a small game in the Champions League as we travel to Madrid to the Bernabeu.


There will be some rotation and resting going on but hopefully we can still produce a run of wins to fire us back up the table

There is obviously a lot to unpack here. Firstly, nowhere near as many wins as we wanted. Ill take the loss to Liverpool on the chin but failing to beat Villa, Leicester, West Ham and Brighton is frustrating.


These teams are teams we NEED to be beating consistently if we are to break the glass ceiling into the top 6.


The Champions League drew to a close for the year but not before we faced multiple winners Real Madrid.

That is an unbelievable result for this Palace side and I couldn't be prouder. We really have taken to the Champions League football like a duck to water. Its great to see.

 

Half Way Tables

This is the lowest we have been in the League at the half way stage in a while. We really need a decent second half of the season to get anywhere near where we want to be.

The Champions League group phase looks a lot more promising. Sat amongst some of the best teams in Europe. We have 2 games left against beatable opposition which if we win will see us into the Round of 16.

 

That is the first half of the season over and I must say I expected to be doing better in the League and a lot worse in Europe, but as we know its never straight forward down at Selhurst Park.


Thank you for reading and we will be back soon with the second half of the season.


Cheers


Panda


















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