04|01 PRESEASON: KEEPING UP APPEARANCES​

seasonFour.episodeOne | Preseason

Just a short one from me today, as after last season, things changed for me. I didn’t feel the same level of commitment to Parma as I had for the previous seasons. I had a few offers, PSV, Everton, Stoke, and Sunderland to name but a few. However, they were not enough to tempt me away.

I go into this preseason fully intent on being here until the winter break at least. There are only a handful of clubs that could tempt me away. But for now, we’re still at Parma. The offers over the summer were not tempting enough so I will see what happens over the coming season in terms of manager vacancies and go from there.

Tactically I won’t change much. We will stick with 4-2-3-1 but I will vary between the deep defensive midfielders and central midfielders. Following from my last post, we need players if we’re to progress.

TRANSFER BUSINESS

Back to business, and the board were generous to give me another €5m to strengthen. It was to be another summer of begging, borrowing and ideally steeling.

Pablo Maffeo

With Gregory van der Wiel moaning about a return back to Holland, I needed to prepare to cover a position I hadn’t thought about. I didn’t want to spend money here, as we had bigger priorities; we needed strikers, wingers, central midfielders and central defenders.

Maffeo was a player I tried to get last season but he chose Aston Villa over us. However, I’m delighted that we’ve managed to get this one over the line as he had other offers. Additionally, his contract comes to an end this season with Manchester City, so I may even try get him on a permanent deal if he does well enough for us.

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Reece James

I know last season I said Reece wasn’t good enough long term, but we failed in our attempts to sign my real targets. With Reece at the end of his contract, it made sense to bring him in. With his high levels of determination, he’ll make a good tutor for the youth players, too.

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And that’s it…

We failed to land every other target on the list. We go into this season with a weak squad with no depth. We’re going to have to manage injuries as best we can because I’m going to need every fit if we’re to achieve anything this season.

THE PRESEASON RESULTS

As it was the Euro’s this summer, we reduced the games down. Encouraging results, but I wouldn’t have expected us to lose any of these in fairness.

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The team is well versed in the system now, defensively we’re looking a bit better, but still struggling out on the wings with crosses into the box.

I want to try to reach 15 wins again, a target of 60 goals seems reasonable again, but I would like to concede less. The target here 50 goals conceded.

Until next time, arrivederci.

O.Jensen

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