I once dreamt of making great Football Manager content on YouTube. Turns out that I was a bit shit at it, so here we are.

There are no promises that I’ll be a consistent blogger, but I’ll certainly try.

The back catalogue of my work is here:

FC St. Pauli #LiberalFM (my currently unrated FM20 blog)

Reviving Ravel (my critically acclaimed FM19 YouTube series)

 Jésus of Nazareth (my definitely-not critically acclaimed FM19 blog)

Redwood FM (will be vaguely FM related subjects outside of my main saves)

Kind of regards,


Infamous : FM21 : John Barnes – Celtic


Welcome to a side-series I’ll be doing over the course of my blogging career (or stopping after this first one because it’s received awfully) – Infamous. I’ve seen other creators do similar ideas to this, where effectively you take on a team/challenge that a club/country did poorly in reality, or actually succeeded. I’ve had something like this in the pipeline for a couple of years and was actually going to create this as a YouTube series back in the glory days of November 2018. Those were the days – before the dark times, before the lockdowns…

As they say though, what’s done is done, and you can’t change it, right? WRONG. I’ll be focusing on some well-known failures of football management in this series, and trying to right some wrongs. I’ve got a few of the obvious examples of British football covered, however if you ever feel the need to get in touch to suggest any further examples from outside my current knowledge, then please do so. I have David Moyes at Manchester United (and Real Sociedad/Sunderland) in the locker, but I’d rather not go for some THAT obvious. 

Anyway – onto the most obvious example I can think of from Scottish football: John Barnes and his eight month stint at Celtic. Original.

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FM21 : Easy PEC : VI : PEC Zwolle


‘Sup? If you’ve not kept up with the latest happenings at Redwood HQ, then you’ll be confused/delighted to hear that I have now departed my role at Sporting Cristal, and signed a 1.5 year deal at Eredivisie relegation faves, PEC Zwolle. After turning down approaches from clubs across Greece and Russia, I chose Zwolle for the following reasons:

  1. They offered me a couple million Euro to spend, which is more than the other sides that sent a contract over
  2. The registration rules for non-EU players are quite lax, so bringing in a few Peruvians shouldn’t be a problem (provided Cristal are prepared to sell)
  3. Eredivisie is probably the most straight-forward league, and one I have experienced before so feel a bit more comfortable with

So, with that in mind, let’s have a look at how we progressed from January 2026 – halfway through Zwolle’s campaign.

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FM21 : The search for Solano : Newgen reviewgen


Welcome back to the blog, so soon after the last one, too! Today I’ll be having a look at a few of the newgens we’ve had through the youth intakes whilst as Sporting Cristal in Football Manager 2021, see what went right, what went wrong, and what the next steps are for the players in question.

If you’ve followed my save, then you’ll be aware that we’ve had a few decent players through who should be able to do a job in Europe before too long, and a couple of them are probably ready for the biggest leagues already. I’ll also be looking at some extremely bland stats, prior to some bland thoughts about things I may or may not have learned. Continue reading

FM21 : End of the beginning : IV & V : Sporting Cristal

Hello there

General greetings to you, #1. Welcome back to my trials and tribulations within my Football Manager 2021 save universe, where I’m attempting to produce and progress the next Nolberto Solano(s). By way of a spoiler, this two season catch-up covers my final two seasons at Peruvian giants, Sporting Cristal. I believe we have produced enough players for me to have a bit of a journey around world football, and pick some of them up over the next few years.

The format of this post will be more of the ‘save update’, with another post planned covering a few of the players in closer detail. If you simply wish to see average newgens (whom I will force into line-ups that they shouldn’t really be getting into), then give this a skip until the next blog. If you’re interested in finding out about my managerial career, then keep reading…

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FM21 : Patches win matches : III : Sporting Cristal

Still here?

Hello! Still here? Firstly, I’m always surprised that anyone decides to read about my Football Manager save, so thank you (yes – you!). Secondly, I’m still at Sporting Cristal, but I’d guess that we’ve probably passed the halfway point of our tenure. Why? Youth development, baby.

Last time out I documented our second season in charge of the most dominant side in Peru (currently), and lauded the fact that we’d have a youth player through with the surname ‘Solano‘. Unfortunately, the season was an absolute disaster, and Oshiro isn’t as good as Nobby (although he did score a wicked cool goal this season, which I’ll show you later). Did I decide to settle on one tactic this year, and how were we effected by a Match Engine patch for the closing half of the season? Read on to find out…

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FM21 : It ain’t easy : II : Sporting Cristal

The search for Solano

Hello friends (and enemies), welcome back to the blog. Today I’ll be covering the entirety of our second season with Sporting Cristal, where we attempt to at least duplicate an excellent first season, in which we won the domestic double and reached the Copa Sudamericana semi final. On top of that, we also continue to keep a close eye on our Youth Intake, and youth development, in the hope that a right midfielder comes through who could at least become a similar type of player to Newcastle United legend, Nolberto Solano.

I never tend to choose teams in Football Manager who are destined for great things from the off, however history points to my teams regressing once the initial silverware has been obtained. Any signs of regression will probably be seen in a poor light by the board, seeing as they want us to finish first in the Opening and Closing stages, as well as the Overall Table. Bit of an early spoiler – it ain’t easy.

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FM21 : Trophies incoming? : I.II : Sporting Cristal


A new version of Football Manager guarantees a few things happening in my life:

  1. I’ll discover a different game that I spend far too much time on rather than FM (cheers Stellaris)
  2. When I do play FM, it is almost a chore to sit and blog as I’m excited to just get on and play
  3. I will fall behind on almost every blog I have shown an interest in, as it seems there are around twenty or so released per week, and I simply don’t have time to keep up

Naturally, I have counteracted the above by ensuring that I’m making time to blog (for the second time in a week or so) about the end-of-season bits in my Solano-inspired Sporting Cristal save, before taking to the stars once I am complete. Speaking of stars, I’ve been seeing a lot of them in the final third of the season in Peru, for better and for worse…

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FM21 : Building blocks : I.I : Sporting Cristal


Hello, and welcome back to the blog. If you didn’t read my introductory post about my Football Manager 2021 adventure then that’s here for you, otherwise, please do carry on.

I am trying to produce my own Nolberto Solano, however my first port of call is to sort out contracts for pretty much every player at the club. A number of first team players, as well as my most promising youngsters, have only a year to run on their contracts (31/12/2021, as the save starts on 11/01/2021). One of my main points about trying to replicate a player akin to Solano was my idea to sign a Head of Youth Development (HoYD) that had a Technical coaching style, and a Wing Play tactical style. Alas, my initial searches have only brought up one person who is vaguely qualified for the role, but they’re not interested in taking a job for 20% of their wage demand. As such, we are lumbered with this goon for the foreseeable:

HoyD Giraldes

I’ll attempt to keep him on as some kind of coach if and when he is eventually replaced

On paper Alberto Giráldez is an excellent HoYD, with his base attributes for the role reading very well, and also having a Resolute personality. The issues are that he is obviously not overly Technical (not sure if this would actually make a difference when youth players come through), and that his preferred tactical style is Route One. Ah. Well at least we could end up with a beast up top that an eventual winger may be able to take advantage of?

Seeing as I’ve turned off the opening transfer window, and that the media/club expectations have been adjusted from the Beta from ‘Challenge for the title’ to ‘Win the title’, I think I should focus on my tactics for the most part this season, as well as bringing through some of the more promising youngsters already at the club. ¡Vamos!

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FM21 Beta : Reviving Reviving Ravel : ADO Den Haag


Honestly, I considered not doing it, but couldn’t get it out of my head. ADO Den Haag are a good choice for a variety of reasons:

  1. Alan Pardew is no longer manager, and I can prove I’m better than the silver fraud
  2. After a few mid-table finishes, the club fluked their way out of a deserved relegation when the season was curtailed by COVID-19, and it was decided that the entire season would be voided
  3. Green and yellow are wonderful colours for a football club
  4. Football Manager content creators seem to get great traction doing the same thing over and over again, and I need hits to feed my family
  5. Look at this, how could I say no to it!?
He looks truly thrilled
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FM21 : The search for Solano: Prologue : Sporting Cristal


It’s going to be a running theme on the site over the next couple of weeks that I’m revealing Football Manager 2021 saves that are heavily linked to past endeavours, be it through an upcoming Beta series, or by simple wordplay. FC St. Pauli (Der Kult), was an incredibly successful save I had in Football Manager 2020, and though I want to use the term ‘cult’ again, it is for a very different purpose this time.

Cast your mind back to Christopher Nolan’s 2010 blockbuster smash hit, Inception. The concept of placing an idea in someone’s dreams, so deep, but allowing them to think that it’s their idea in the first place. It takes hold, and creates its own path through their mind, to the point that it takes over the conscious thought process. I absolutely adore this film, and how it can make you explore where you’ve had genuine inspiration in your life, or make you realise you never had that idea at all. Something else I adore heavily came from Peru, close to capital city, Lima, where Sporting Cristal are based…

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