Another season of my FM16 save with Danish side Akademisk Boldklub Gladsaxe is over. We did not expected any big success this season because of limited budget and more importantly, our side was more younger again so there were not big expectations to end the FC Kobenhavn domination in Superliga. But we demolished all the title odds and we tottally exceeded expectations. We’ve won the league title for the first time after 56 years!
It was a pretty active from us. We brought seven new players during summer and winter and more than twenty players left the club for a free, permanent transfer or on-loan. Some of the relleased players retired what is absolutely normal.
There were huge transfers for us like departure of Casper Rasmussen to Motnpellier for a fee around £1M, René Kirkegaard left the club for Stromsgodset, Mathias Jensen went to Rosenborg and Alexander Ludwig to FC Lorient.
Long serving defender Marc Maze who were in the club from 2015 and he was key member during the rise from the third division, left the club for a free in the winter 2023. He played nearly 200 matches and scored ten goals. He was a great servant for AB.
We brought some amazing players to the club as well. We signed defender Michael Fisker for permantent transfer after his two-years loan spell with us. We signed another young defender Lars Sorensen from FC Kobenhavn and talenten young goalkeeper Ondrej Brezina from Sparta Prague for two-years loan.
We also bought central defender Stamatis Manginas from Randers and this Greek international player was key defensive player. We brought also 17-years-old defender Jakob Tonesen from AC Horsens and the last transfer was young defender Thomas Frederiksen from Midtjylland. He can play on every position at the left side.
The separate chapter is signing of midfielder Agon Mucolli from Viborg in the summer. He was wanted by more than ten clubs around Scandinavia but we signed him for a free. The reason was simple – sell him during winter and make profit. And it happened as I wanted. We sold him to Stade Rennais for a fee around £1M.
Champions League 2022/2023
Thanks to a second place in the previous league season we were able to play in the Champions League Qualification. We played with Dynamo Kyyiv in the third round and we were through to the Playoff after the 3-1 win and 0-1 lost.
We played against Arsenal in the Playoff and it was unreal to go through to the Group Stage. We lost 0-4 in London and 0-2 in the home second leg. So we were eliminated but we were transfered to Europa League Group Stage…
Europa League 2022/2023
The Group Stage was very tough again, same last year. We have been drawn in Group C with Bayer Leverkusen, Club Brugge and Dinamo Moscow. We had a great start to the group matches because we beat Dinamo 2-0 at home.
We lost to Brugge and Leverkusen and tied with Leverkusen. We lost also with Dinamo in Moscow but we had still the chance to reach second place in the table before the last match in the group. We needed to beat Brugge and we have done it thanks to a goal by academy graduate Henrik Jessen.
We finished second in the table behind Leverkusen and we got CSKA Moscow in the 2st Knockout Round. We lost 0-1 at home in the first leg and lost the second leg 3-5 in Moscow. It was crazy match. We were 4-0 down in the halftime but we scored three goals during eight minutes after the break. It was not enough but it was great experience for all our players.
And of course, it had a very positive effect for our finances because we earned almost £3M on prize money.
DBU Pokalen 2022/2023
It was clear from the start of the season that younger players will play in this competition during first rounds. We really need to look about their development. And it was very positive. We beat Dalum 3-0 in the 3rd Round and young midfielder Anders Mikkelsen scored one and made one assists in his debut.
We also beat Silkeborg in the 4th Round and Horsens in the Quarterfinal. There were a lot of positives thanks to performances by our young players from our academy. DBU Pokalen is important competition for us because it was our ticket to Europa League during previous seasons.
We played with Brondby in the Semi Final and we were through after a 2-0 win at home and a 2-2 draw away in the second leg.
The Final against Midtjylland was dramatic but we were luckier team and we won 3-2 thanks to a goal by Thomas Randrup in 78th minute. It was our third consecutive win in this competition.
The Preliminary Phase started very well for us because we did not lost in first seven matches and won five ot these matches. First loss was with Aalborg at the end of August and another one for a long time with FC Kobenhavn.
After this loss we won nine matches in a row and after the draw with Vejle and win over Odense we secured place in the Champions Group where the best six clubs play. We were first in the league after the Preliminary Phase ahead of FC Kobenhavn.They have won four titles in last seven years.
We started the Champions Group in great style. We beat Aarhus 1-0 but we demolished FC Kobenhavn 5-1. We scored three goals during five minutes in this match and played without dismissed player last thirty minutes. We were seven points ahead of them before last eight matches.
The last eight games was very good from us. We had injury problems when there were up to eight injured players but we done it. After a massive win against FC Kobenhavn we beat also Nordsjaelland and Midtjyalland. I had to play rotation squad and some younsters against Aarhus and it was not enough to collect some points. Nevermind.
We beat Midtjylland again after an impressive performance and drew 3-3 with FC Kobenhavn away. Then, we need one win to secure league title. And what best you can do than win the leage title after 56 years thanks to a win in derby match against Nordsjaelland!
In the last two matches we lost and beat Brondby. The last match was a little symbolic because Nichlas Meyer scored 20th goal of the season, Henrik Jessen made 20th assist and Kenni Aakjaer scored 20th goal of the season.
So, we won the Danish Superliga seven points ahead of FC Kobenhavn and 17 points ahead of Brondby!
Positives & Negatives – 2022/2023
There were some positives during this season. The main was that youth facilities work started. The upgrade is expected to cost around 650K and it will be completed in October 2023. It could help to our work with young players.
Many young players became part of the Senior Squad and played some matches in league, domestic cup and Europa League. I could play the strongest side and the best players in every matches if there were not injured or suspended but I did not.
We played many matches in domestic league with 17 or 18 years-old players and the squad was happy with that. I will continue in this style for many years, I really love it. It’s great to watch how they are better and better after every four or five matches.
Plans for next season? I think I have enough defenders but we really need to strengthen in midfield area, primarily on the wings where we have only three players who are cappable to play there. And I still waiting for a good regen-striker who would be a good enough for Senior Squad…
The main “minus” of the season is departure of our B team Manager Jaroslav Černý. The former czech footballer was a very important part of the club because he worked great with many young players and he has a very similar look on tactics as me.
He became a Manager of Fremad Amager, the club from NordicBet Liga (the second tier). Fream Amager was bottom in the table in that moment but…
But thanks to a league title we will be able to hire a new coaches to our teams and I can say we signed Kasper Schmeichel or Maarten Stekelenburg as our new coaches for B team and Under 19 team…
Stats & Finances 2022/2023
We scored 57 goals in Superliga this season and conceded only 27 what means we had the best defense in the league. We collected 82 yellow cards and 5 red cards and it’s a new record of Superliga. Michael Fisker and Lars Sorensen had 15 yellow cards each. Sorensen was sent-off three times in league matches.
- Best goalscorer(s): Nichlas Meyer (Winger) & Kenni Aakjaer (Advanced Forward) – 20 goals
- Most assists: Henrik Jessen (Winger or AMC) – 14 assists
- Most apps: Ondřej Březina (Goalkeeper) – 46 matches
- Best average rating: Alexander Tved Hansen (Deep Lying Playmaker) – 7.33
- Most player of the match awards: Nichlas Meyer (Winger) – 7x
Our academy graduate Nichlas Meyer was named the best Yougn Danish Player of the Year of 2022! He played in this calendar year 47 matches and scored 18 goals.
Young goalkeeper Ondrej Brezina, who is onloan with us from AC Sparta Prague, was named the second best Danish Goalkeeper for the year 2022. Incredible!
Just a few days after the last match of the season there was a big news! Members of board of both clubs presented that Arsenal FC will be a senior affiliate club of Akademisk Boldklub.
Arsenal will be able to send players on loan to AB and player’s wage will be paid in full by Arsenal during loan spell. Arsenal have first option to buy players from AB and Arsenal will pay AB an annual fee of 132K.
Arsenal is now managed by Laurent Blanc, there are still players like Alex Iwobi, Mesut Özil, Aaron Ramsey, Francis Coquelin or Hector Bellerín but also many unknown players. They won Europa League in 2020 and FA Cup in 2021.
And that’s all for this part…
Thanks for reading. @KeysiRensie.