- Technically, I've been on and off Hattrick since I was eleven, managing a grand total of three separate teams (including my current one), although each time I've been known by a different name. In my younger years, I kept a team for perhaps a year at max, but I could never keep up the interest to stay invested in a team. Of course, having matured significantly, I now realize that this game is extremely long term; people can play this for literal years upon years. And yes, on reflection, if I had have kept my stupidly named team for the past 7 years rather than pick up and drop the game repeatedly, I'd probably actually have a decent team right now... I appear to be getting off topic. Anyway, not really that much to say. I like to ramble, and I like the community. I just wish all series were as active in forum posting and posting on HTU as V.95 was. I mean come on, the community, and the crazy stories and press releases you come up with from the results of text-based match and transfer reports regarding the adventures of your eleven... ahem... eighteen year old manager help the game come alive! :D (And this time, I'm here to stay. I promise. Maybe.)
Following the Dusk Dragons’ relegation back to VI, the Dragons had almost entirely dropped off the radar of the football world. The manager was repeatedly unavailable for comment following his team’s 7th placing in a season that could be called a spirited, but nonetheless hopeless attempt at surviving in V.95, quickly fading into obscurity. An entire season followed without a single report from the team. Then, mere weeks ago, the team exploded through the VI.112 circuit, placing first in a near-undefeated streak of victories, returning them to V.179 with a brand new name; “Dawn Dragons”.
The young manager of the team, Hilgrad, called a press conference for the first time in months to explain his team’s hiatus, the team’s renaming, and his plans for the future.
“It certainly has been a while. We basically dropped off the face of the world out of shame… We were extremely disappointed that we couldn’t stick around in V.95. We wanted to be the team that pulled it all together, never gave up and pulled out a victory despite any odds going against us into the finals. But we couldn’t take home a victory; in fact, the critical match wasn’t even close. It was disappointing to miss the chance of staying in V.95; the series was the top ranked series and notorious for its’ incredible difficulty. Staying in there for a prolonged time would have done wonders for our team; and would have toughened us up for the inevitable IVs. Instead, we were sent straight back to the VIs; a place both myself and the team believe we didn’t belong, and that we didn’t deserve to return. Following this horrific defeat, our rep had suffered accordingly. Ranked against my rival managers and teams who had pulled together their teams around the same time as myself, we ranked almost at rock bottom due to our relegation back to VI, whereas many of my colleagues were progressing on to V, IV, or even III. I had a talk with the team. We all felt ashamed to be back in VI. So we made a deal. We were going to put our heads down next season, and get our jobs done, to push ourselves back to where we belong in V. Even IF the team was good, you can only get promoted once a season; every moment in VI was a moment of shame, and we would never forgive ourselves if we missed our opportunity to return to V. And on our return to V, in our new series of V.179, we officially unveil a new name for ourselves; the Dawn Dragons, representing a new Dawn, a new team from the ashes of the old.”
He smiled for a second though.
“Although, to be fair, it’s not really that much of a surprise. Technically and officially, we changed the team name back at VI, but now that we’re back, it only seems right that in our first true press conference, that we ‘unveil’ the team name now.”
When queried about the future, both near and far, he hinted at another major change to take place both soon, and in the season break. However, he was clear and open about the upcoming match against series leader WILX.
“For the absolute near future, we’re looking at our top-of-the-table clash against WILX. To be honest, the game strategy all depends on how the restructuring pans out. In the short term, I’m considering some transfers to round out some of the weaker areas of the team. If they proceed before the match with WILX, then so much the better, we’ll go for the victory. However, as it stands this week, our team’s looking at scouting out the opposition, and to try and keep scoring down to a minimum.”
The young manager has been said to have high standards recently while looking at his transfers. In the last few days, it’s been rumored that the three of the players he had been scouting out for these transfers all fell through when he felt that they did not ‘satisfy his requirements’ for the team. When questioned about this rumor, he confirmed it and made his stance clear.
“Yes, the players I had been looking at over the last few days just did not fit the bill. At the moment, I’m looking for either a winger or wingback to toughen up the wings, and a new Central Defender replace the more… lacking defenders in our formation.”
He placed particular emphasis on the word ‘lacking’, and his eyes seemed to darken for a moment before returning to his speech. Many present believe he referred to Sonny Gambrill and his recent performance as Central Defender, turning in an appalling performance the previous week, despite retaining a clean sheet in the match. Some fans find this harsher than they’d normally expect; the old Hilgrad wouldn’t have emphasized such a poor performance due to both the match result (of a clean sheet coupled with high Dragon scoring) as well as Gambrill’s previous record, leading many to believe it to be nothing but an ‘off’ week.
“However, in order to be cohesive, I’m looking for very specific features in these new players, even ones not apparent in the current formation as we look to the future. In terms of a new Central Defender, I need it to be someone respected by the other players, and someone who has the experience and leadership to be able to pull together the defense as a sort of “shadow-captain.” Someone with brilliant leadership, charisma, and the ability to rally their team behind them is a necessity for captain. It’s my opinion that these men are often strikers; after all, strikers are often heralded as heroes whenever a goal is scored; it’s someone you can look to in order to turn around a match. To this date, I have felt that Waldring has filled this role well; he has leadership, he’s a striker, and he was with the team since the beginning as a true Australian player. But while this figurehead role is certainly important, it is also important to recognize the workhorses of the team; the defenders and midfielders that shine in their ability to make the strikers look good through their playmaking. For those that shun this spotlight, a captain to cover the ‘rear-guard’ is needed, and an entire different skillset is needed; one with experience, tactical ability and someone who’s able to rally and tie together the defence and midfield to let the strikers shine through with their counter-attacks. It may be a long search; and in order to fill these traits, we may even recruit from the youth team, even if the player doesn’t exhibit these traits just yet. We will always look towards our hero captain in front for our rallying cries, but our shadow-captain will always be there at the back, supporting our ‘leading man’, and supporting our team in our games.”
Again, Hilgrad referenced another upcoming change in the team.
“This is all towards the unveiling towards the end of this season. There will be another revolution in the team. A new name. A new kit. New players. And perhaps new tactics and new formations. The considerations for each of these factors have already begun. In-fact, items such as the kit have already been decided, and we’re considering from a range of options for new formations. Let me be clear. The team will go dark again at the end of the season. But we will return at the start of the new season, for the new and final unveiling for our team.”