When I started playing football again at the beginning of 2019, I had just spent four years in New York and had moved to Miami to be closer to my wife’s family. I was at the ripe old age of 33, and it was the first time I had played in 18 years.
As a kid I used to play as a lightening fast, tough tackling left back, rarely going forward but always being the reliable one who would stay back and defend.
When I started playing six-aside in Miami, my defensive instincts kicked in again. Sure, scoring a hat trick was nice – there’s literally no other feeling that can compare to scoring – but my natural inclination was to press the opponent and close down, win the ball back and to pass it on.
As such, I played a role akin to N’Golo Kante, albeit an extremely less talented one on a smaller pitch in less important matches, and with infinitely less stamina and talent.
But having been brought up in the UK and being accustomed to aggressive tackling and watching players constantly close one another down, it made me realize that despite not loving my position as a left back, I actually enjoyed my position as a defender more than your average player.
As such, I realized that my admiration for players like Roy Keane and Patrick Vieira were greater than that of Gabriel Batistuta and Ronaldo.
And so after after tearing my ACL and Meniscus on New Years Eve 2019, and having surgery that would keep me out of the sport I had recently started playing again for over a year, I realized that the next best thing to playing would be to start a Football Manager blog to keep my mind occupied.
After all, for someone who has a journalism degree that never gets used and for someone who never made it as a professional or amateur footballer, a blog about the fictional exploits of Football Manager seemed to be the most logical move for someone who was incapacitated with an overactive mind.
And so www.ballwinningmidfielder.com was born, named not only after one of my favorite positions in the Football Manager world, but also probably my most favorite position ever.
When I play Football Manager, most of my tactics evolve around the idea of a defensive midfielder, or a midfield destroyer, or a way in which is entirely aggressive and exceptionally belligerent.
The content that www.ballwinningmidfielder.com hopes to focus on in the foreseeable future might be different from your average save or what your normal Football Manager blog publishes online. Which is fine. Either way, we hope that what you read here is something that you’ll find fun, entertaining and amusing, even if it’s not something you would typically read.
And whilst it’s nice to sign Kai Havertz for your Liverpool save, or to secure that Mbappe signature for your attempt at emulating Alex Ferguson at Manchester United, we’re more interested in storylines that revolve around the idea of Wimbledon AFC winning the Premier League after signing ‘The Next Stan Collymore’, playing the most aggressive long ball tactics known to man.
We’re open to ways to make this blog more fun, more entertaining and more interesting. After all, the main reason this blog was created (outside of myself) was for you the reader. So we’d welcome anything that you have to say.
We hope you like www.ballwinningmidfielder.com, and we hope you stay with us and enjoy the journey as the blog grows and publishes content over the coming months and years.