Before the start of the season, I picked out 4 players I was looking to, to lead Cambridge towards promotion. So far, at the halfway point, 2 of those players have performed amazingly, one hasn’t played at all due to injury and one of those has performed well but in a different role to the one I envisioned. 1 player, however, has outperformed all 4 and that is Jevani Brown.
Originally suggested in my slack channel by a real-life Cambridge fan, radders21, Brown was the player I’d picked out to be my main playmaker. Injuries caused issues for him at the very start of the season, however once clear he improved to a decent level along with the rest of the team.
The main issue was that, while we were doing well defensively, we were often found wanting in the attack. I felt playing Izpeazu in a support role, limited what he could do with his strength and speed. I wanted him on the shoulder of the defence, looking to turn and get in behind but with no-one close to him to give quick support that would leave him isolated. I also wanted to free Brown, he was often too far back to be the out ball we were looking for him to be.
The answer to both of these was a move I’d been playing around with on my beta save. I moved Brown up one slot and made him a trequartista, freeing him from defensive responsibilities and allowing him to float an act as an out ball, and swapped Ikpeazu from a DLFs to a DLFa meaning he would still look to hold up balls sent towards him but he was also looking to turn and get in behind the opposition.
The response was fantastic. Before the changes, we were fighting to sneak into the play-off positions, after saw a run of strong results as we steadily climbed the table until on the 10th of January we beat Coventry 2-1 to take the top spot. Brown’s performance has been nothing short of spectacular.
Leading the league in assists, dribbles, match rating and MotM while also making appearances on the leader-boards with goals and key passes. With 9 assists and 12 goals, he has directly affected 21 goals with much more being scored as a result of his dangerous balls and movement. I’ve never managed to get a player to perform like this for me, not even the great Corazzin from my Cambridge team of the 90’s.
If this is your first time reading this series you can find them all here. If you’re a member of the FM Slack my channel is #braziers-cambridge.
You’ll get more in-depth updates there and the opportunity to give me daily abuse if required. However if Slack isn’t your cup of tea you can also follow me on twitter @Brazier25.