After a decent January, the wins just keep on coming for this Valencia side. We have stormed through February and March with a 13 game unbeaten run, finally losing to Barcelona when I tried this defensive system….
Since then, 2 wins in 6 games have ended our title challenge, and we are on the brink of an Europa League exit. Olympiakos came to the Mestalla and sailed back to Greece with a draw and 3 away goals. The shame of it. We need to go out there and win to keep our hopes of retaining the cup alive.
I go with my usual formation and lineup, Rong Qifei stays up front instead of Andres Renteria and Tiny Tim is back. The Greeks go in front early, but Rong Qifei gets on the end of a Stafylidis cross to square things up at half time. I tell the boys to believe in themselves and we go out and pepper the Olympiakos goal for 45 minutes. After at least 3 goalmouth scrambles, Ahmed Musa finally bangs one past the keeper and celebrations ensue with 5 minutes to go. We move onwards into the semi finals of the Europa League! We draw Galatasaray in the semi, which isn’t a horrific match as Tottenham and Porto are the other teams left in the draw.
Back in the league, we are 3-0 up against Celta Vigo after 20 minutes when Kevin van Keulen, in a rare cameo, decides to get himself sent off with a two footed scissor leg breaker challenge that involved him launching himself a whole 10 yards in midair to take out Celta striker Davi. Cue the madness. We go in 3-3 at half time. After I’ve beaten and kicked KVK unconscious, I demand that the rest of the team learn from his mistakes. Jorge Ruiz certainly learns, scoring witihin 4 minutes of the restart. Good boy. Celta get an equaliser though, and that was all she wrote. I pull out a copy of Zlatan Imbrahimovic’s autobiography and swear an oath on Zlatan, in front of the squad and our home fans, that Kevin van Keulen, the cancer that has struck repeatedly at the heart of our title challenge, has knocked us out of cups, and has depressed everyone to the point of rioting, will never more wear the hallowed shirt of the first XI. He is to be banished to the reserves, until some other fool wishes to employ him.
Look at his little smug bastard face. I hope he burns…….
With that travesty of a draw, we do at least qualify for the Champions League. The board as usual, recognising that I have kept Valencia in the top three most of the season, and got them into the Europa League semi final, decide in their wisdom that I can have some money to spend.
What the actual f***!!!! There are English Championship sides with more money to spend than us! This is ridiculous. Admittedly, I was allowed to spend a few million in February on a talented youngster from Brazil, who’ll we see in the summer window, but to only provide £1.49m for next season….. might it be time to consider my position here?
Before I go jumping ship, I should probably try and improve my CV a bit. Another Europa League win would go a long way, so I must concentrate on Galatasaray.
Rong Qifei seems to be the one man I can truly rely on. The Chinese/Portuguese half breed does wonders for my goalscoring woes, as does the other Portuguese chinaman, Wang Tang. Rong scores 2 goals in the first half against Galatasaray and comes out of the 3-0 win with a 9.0 rating. I start a petition for him to be given the freedom of the city of Valencia.
Although Galatasaray beat us 3-2 at their hellhole of a stadium, we still go through thanks to Foppoli and Musa goals.
Next up is Real Madrid in the Spanish Cup final. In a full 90 minute match streamed live over the Interwebs on Twitch, Jose Gaya does us a huge favour byf irst letting Qifei free in the box for his first, then hauling him down in the box twice either side of half time. Musa and Rong Qifei put away a penalty each before Pione Sisto ends it in the 56th minute. Real make a brief comeback with two late goals, but I’m dancing around in my second best suit regardless. We take the Spanish Cup for the second time during my reign.
As I’m preparing my side for the Europa League final, my attention wanders towards the job centre. Bayern Munich, who have been unceremoniously kicked off the top of the Bundesliga by a dominant Borussia Dortmund and finished 6th this season, have sacked Luis Enrique. I could totally take them back to glory….I apply for the job, and turn back to my lineup for the Europa final.
As always, tried and trusted.
9 minutes in and Spurs go one up through Gary Mullineux, but Foppoli gets us back in it within 2 minutes. Another two minutes later, and Spurs are back in front, but we immediately equalise through Ahmed Musa. After that, the game is ours. We dominate the whole game, with Foppoli sealing another Europa League triumph with two minutes to go!!! We win 4-2.
The Europa League final turns out be be my final game in charge of Valencia. Bayern come in with an offer to double my wages, and give me money to spend. With an ageing squad that needs replenishing, I can’t resist the challenge. Valencia have enough top players now that they should be safe enough to maintain their spot in the top three, so I don’t feel too guilty about it.
Goodbye my lover….goodbye my friend… you have been the club, you have been the club for me….
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