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02|03 MERCATO D’HIVER: Things Are Ticking along Nicely

Welcome to the latest instalment of my journey with Stade Rennais F.C. Last time out, I took you through our season up to the end of 2020. In this update I'll be reviewing our January 2021 transfer window and the matches for the month.

SeasonTwo.EpisodeThree | Mercato d’hiver

January 2021

Compared to last season, we’ve had a relatively successful January with just the one bad result as it goes. It has been quiet on the transfer front and things are ticking along nicely in our second season.

THE TRANSFER WINDOW

A relatively quiet transfer window for us this time around.

Transfers in

IN | Bjarki Þór Sigurðsson | €53K from Íþróttafélagið Þór

Yeah. I don’t know how to pronounce his name, and to get it written down was a copy and paste job. However, what I do know is that my scouts think he’s going to be something special. High determination will aid his development with us and for such a small fee we can take a risk on him.

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Transfers out

A couple of players left us this window. Fringe players who probably won’t get much football in the foreseeable future.

OUT | Brandon Soppy | €3.4M to Tottenham Hotspurs

Personally, I don’t see it. I don’t know why Spurs were back in for him. Perhaps it’s the potential, I don’t know, but my coaching staff said we were fine to let him go, and he wanted to leave so we sanctioned this move.

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OUT | Jordan Siebatcheu | On loan to Rio Ave

He fell further and further down the pecking order, and with his contract up at the end of the season, we felt it was probably okay to let him go out on loan before he leaves us in the summer.

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Youth player promotions

Quite a bold move, perhaps, but Camavinga was playing for me at 16 years old, so…

Giles Schmitt | 18 years old | Striker 

Fresh out of the academy and scoring at a phenomenal rate for the under 19s, Giles Schmitt got a promotion for the first team to see what he could do. Well, 3 goals in 4(1) appearances is how he did… Spoiler alert!

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JANUARY 2021

Better than last January. The Saint-Étienne slip up was perhaps a one-off, but we can have these games every now and again.

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Perhaps the biggest story of the month is young Giles Schmitt being on the scoresheet three times for us in his first four games. I’ve had a lot of injuries to strikers so we’ve had to rotate a lot, but fortunately, we have a lot of backup strikers who are more than capable of standing in when it matters.

Palacios continues to shine in the centre of the park, which worries me as teams across Europe might start to take a look at him. However, we’ll enjoy him while we have him.

We’re still miles behind PSG, and only marginally ahead of the rest of the Champions League chasing pack. It certainly promises to be a very close and hard-fought finish to the season with both Monaco and Marseille more than capable of taking the 2nd and 3rd spots.

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(Click here for the full table)

Overall I cannot complain at all. Being out of the Champions league should allow us to have a good run in the league and perhaps concentrate on one of the cups, too.

YOUTH WATCH

Returning this January, we take a look at the youth players playing in the first-team squad and profile how they’re doing for us.

Eduardo Camavinga

We profiled him last January, well this is an update a year later. His value has rocketed, as have his attributes. He continues to get better and better for us and is now probably a key player for the team.

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That just about wraps things up. My next post will be covering the rest of the season!

As always, you can get in touch with me in the comments below, via twitter @fmfutbolmanager, or my slack channel #fmFutbolManager — if you’re not a part of the Football Manager Slack community, then you can join here!

Until next time, à tout à l’heure.

Oliver Jensen

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