Hello and welcome back to the Stadio Alberto Braglia. The 2021/22 season has finally concluded and we have been in a battle for Serie A.
We left you with the transfer news of divine intervention, well the use and abuse of the transfer window to manipulate temporary loan signings. Where we managed to bring in Manuel Locatelli, Gigi Donnarumma and Christian Eriksen all on loan. I then played a little and lost my way. Not due to a loss of interest. Just simply real life and other factors have been in higher priority. I reignited the Phoenix touch paper by firstly adding a picture of the Alberto Braglia into my game. From here the fire began to burn.
We were drawn against Man City in the 1st round knockout, with a trip to Manchest-aaaaarrr for the first leg. To put it straight the opening 30 minutes were the worst I have ever felt whilst playing this version of the game. We were 4-0 down. Dybala and Insigne both scored a brace and we were no where near the races never mind not at the races. I screamed with encouragement then frustration throughout the first half. The boys were silent in the changing rooms waiting for me to say something. I was as dumbfounded as them. I couldn’t think what to say. I eventually composed myself to calmly say that the first half performance was not acceptable and that everyone needed to rally round to show the 1500 away fans something for the time and money that they had spent in getting to this match. The second half kicked of and we started to show more composure on the ball and belief in our play. The introduction of Hernando Garcia (Our Columbian Right Inside Forward) was a key change that sparked an improvement in our performance as he crossed for Ronaldo’s 57 minute goal. Rodrygo then became provider for Eriksen on 73 minutes and Garcia became scorer seven minutes later. We left Manchest-aaaaaarrr frustrated but with some belief that we were still in the tie.
The home tie involved us throwing the kitchen sink and the Aga at Man City with nothing to show for our drive. City parked the bus and kept it’s doors firmly closed.
We had seen Modena venture further in the Champions League than ever before, but we were punished due to a lack of quality and depth in our squad (defensively). The Home match against Barcelona has to be the highlight of the European campaign.
When I switched the game back on were we sitting at second in the league with a home match against Empoli waiting for us. We gave the home crowd what they expected with a 4-1 win. With Garcia, Sancho and Klymenko(2) putting their names on the scoresheet.
We then went to Fiorentina and put them to the sword by winning 4-1 again. Klymenko and Sancho proving to be the key men in the second match in a row.
With this new found belief we go on to win the next three games. (Below is a look at the league form since the close of the transfer window). This form sees us catch up with league leaders Napoli.
We go on to a big game against Lazio where a victory would see us leapfrog Napoli to the top of the table. We enter a competitive match that sees little between the two teams in the first half. On 47 minutes the game sparked to life courtesy of Pol Lirola. He got him self sent off for a stupid two footed challenge. But….the boys rallied round and Ronny and Roddy put us in a very comfortable position by combining a few times to put us 3-0 up on 89 minutes. The AI then decided that Lazio should have a greater say in the final result when Lucas scored on 90 mins and Collido scored on 90 minutes plus 5. Fortunately the ref found his whistle and blew to close the game.
Three days later we played Milan at the San Siro. In a match that saw us shed a lot of blood. First Romagnoli came off after 6 minutes with a head injury. Then Rodrygo had to come off 4 minutes later. Sancho gave us and the game a breakthrough. However, Petko Hristov for Milan thought otherwise with powerful header on 68 minutes. The goals had stopped for the match but the heavy handed approach from Milan had not. Sancho and Nelson then got targeted by Milan leaving us finishing the match with 10 players on the pitch due to injuries.
The run in for the final five matches was a favourable draw. We need to win the next four games to win the league which would mean the final game of the season could be a celebration at home against Napoli.
We beat Perugia 3-0 at home then beat local rivals Sassuolo 1-0 at the Mapei Stadium. Our penultimate home match saw us win 4-0 against Bologna, and in turn we won the league after Napoli had drawn or lost.
Our final two matches saw the opportunity to mix the starting line up a bit. The changes didn’t lose our momentum and we won away to Bari 4-1 and then the last game of the season 1-0 at home against Napoli.
Next… Who did what in our championship winning season……