The Retirement Academy – Part 32: AC Micklan

Here we are again, back at the Retirement Academy trying to recover from a bad start. It’s different this time, we are the defending champions and have a chance of making the last 8 of the Champions League. Life is good. But it could be better.

The Micker still loves a goal and thankfully so do most of the front 4 at home to Roda. They are often our nemesis but they were bang average here and we put them to the sword.

Meanwhile an impressive away win at Den Haag keeps up keeping on. The progress of Samways is encouraging.

I’ve no idea who he is – anybody got any guesses?

Ajax come to town and I tell you what, this is one of our best performances ever. Ajax are put firmly in their place and reminded that despite their hefty advantage over us, we won’t give up our title without a fight.

The England job! As tempting as it is to take the gig and give the Micker caps, it’s not what we’re here for. Another time, perhaps.

Speaking of the Micker, his goal in Bulgaria gives us a vital away win and gives us a high chance of qualifying from our group.

We have to go to the San Siro but 11 (or even 12) might be enough to secure one of the second best spots.

A pair of Q’s see off MVV in the Pints. Querella has stopped complaining about wanting to join a bigger club.

Twente Pints you say. Could be a messy night.

Quinnidi Mick see us ease to victory at Heracles. We are red hot at the moment.

Johan Cruyff gets the England gig, just months after leaving Feyenoord for Real Madrid. Loyalty.

Groningen are no match for us. Not in this form.

Bjarne Goldbaek has been asking for a move for a while now and amazingly somebody pays money for him. Toodles.

D-Day in Milan is actually Degryse day. Micker adds a remarkable second and despite Kaiser halving the deficit, Rombouts and co can’t find a leveller. What a win.

Top of the group!

Our reward is the current champions, Bayern Munich. That’s not the best but then again what was a good draw here? Rangers? Munich clearly the dominant city in Germany.

Feyenoord are a poor imitation with the manager and we leave it late to defeat them. Great result.

We look like blowing it at home to Vitesse but the unlikely figure of Igor Stimac heads in the winner. When the going is good! Happy Christmas.

That leads to a month off but for once a very quiet transfer window sees nobody leave or sign. We return to action with a tenative draw at Fortuna

The Twente Pints challenge ends well for us. Unsurprisingly Micker is up for that task and despite a late wobble, it’s a deserved win.

Off to AZ in the quarters, not an easy place to go.

A rehearsal for that sees us struggle to a 0-0 draw. That Christmas break has really checked our momentum.

We struggle to a create anything at PSV and deserve to lose. Any hopes of a title comeback are surely gone now.

Our game in hand is the last of this update and it goes in our favour after just six minutes. Paulo Bento is 38 but his weaving run can only be halted by their flying goalkeeper. It’s a straight red, a chest injury for Bento and Degryse slots the penalty. We win 3-0.

So the good news is we are up to second and in the Champions League positions. The bad news is we are 12 points behind Ajax and need a miracle in the remaining 13 games to overturn that. There’s only so many teams Ajax are going to lose to.

A quick but customary check in with the Micker shows he has 20 in 29. That’s not bad. He seems to have chilled out compared to his yellow card count from previous seasons. One more goal for the big 400, you’d be a fool to bet against him getting it.

A big week awaits next week. A pair of quarter finals, both tricky in their own way but the aim has got to be to get back into the Champions League one way or another. Let’s see what we can achieve.

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