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Hattrick International - best 8 managers

Started on January 9th 2017, Hattrick International is one of the most interesting competition from our beloved game.
Two weeks ago we found the name of the first human international champion, mihaitzah (9660840), who won the title in the last stage of the season.
The other 7 managers who made it to the top league for the very first time, after a race of almost two years, should be very proud as well.
We've asked them all about their HI experience and their successful strategy. Check out the answers and ask them more yourself on dedicated thread: (17221488.1)!

How would you describe your journey to the top league and what impressions you got after this very first season in (256687)?

1. mihaitzah (9660840): If I have to describe this journey in one single word, that will be "amazing"!
From the moment when HTI was launched, I liked the idea. I found very appealing the fact that so many good managers would start the competition having the same resources. In this context I just wanted to test and prove myself the abilities I have in Hattrick. I didn’t set from the very beginning the goal of reaching into the top eight teams, but I gave myself some flexibility in case that would have become a goal.

Initially I wanted to have as much fun as possible, so I tried to have longer cup runs and I played in ladders. I think that only after a few seasons the goal of being the first HTI winner actually crystalized.
My strategy was, I think, very similar to that of all the other seven managers that reached in the first league. I was axed on buying old players, most of them 33+ years old, if not even older. This way I was able to have good ratings at a low cost.
But I also had to make some money in order to be able to advance. I chose to train at scoring younger players (age range from 18 to 25 years) in order to make some profit. For various reasons, such as the performance-profit balance, I considered that as being the most effective training strategy for me.

Because I trained with high stamina share, I had to carefully pick the trainees that needed only two or three trainings to jump to the next scoring level.
In the first season I was quickly eliminated from the cup, but I managed to reach the semi-finals of a secondary one. Also, the 6th and the 5th league were quite easy to win because I managed to quickly build one of the top teams in HTI.
In the same time, I managed to get close to the top in HTI and starting season ladders.
In the 4th league, I remember that I first met a team that was more powerful than mine, but it wasn't a problem because the 2nd place also offers the chance of promotion. I think in that season I focused the most on the financial part and I built the foundations of the future strength.

In the 3rd league, although I think that I had the strongest team, due to some unlucky matches, I was very close to finish on the 3rd place and loose promotion. Fortunately, I managed to finish second and in the next season things went smoothly.
In the 2nd league my team was very close to the maximum and I managed to get rather quickly some points advance that made my life much easier. Because of that, I was able to focus more on the cup, where I reached the final (unfortunately lost).
After a two seasons break, I managed to win my series, in the 2nd league. A very important objective was reached, I got in the first HTI league, but then I wanted to win it.

Advancing in the first league was fantastic for me for another reason as well: this way I was managing in the same time two teams in the first league of two very competitive championships: HTI and Romania.

Before the season, I strengthened the team as much as I could, in order to achieve the major goal: winning the HTI title.
First result came before the start of the season: I won the Heroes of 2017 trophy.
The season in the first league was really challenging and provided me a lot of satisfaction. I consider that, based on the team strength, my team was the second one, after HI-Dandy de Tazmania (2053266).
I would like to use this opportunity to congratulate ercanto for the team he created, it was clearly the strongest in HTI.

In order to overcome that strength, I had to be more creative on the tactical and strategy side. For example, I remember that for the second game against Dandy I bought a technical midfield player hoping that it will be man-marked and it was, with me playing CA. With some luck, I have to admit, I managed to win both games against him and that was crucial in becoming the first winner of HTI.

Now I am feeling very happy with my journey in HTI, I had a lot of fun and I met really nice people. But the journey is not over yet and I am looking forward to the fun of the next seasons of HTI.

2. ercanto (8118689): Interviewer note: Currently he is on holiday, but there will be some comments on the dedicated thread after he will be back home: (17221488.1).

3. KaptenBacon (4978196): You gave me a loaded question so I feel obliged to answer honestly.

The players made the journey to the top fun. "The Race" has brought communities together - just look at the Nordic thread: (17161711.1) - 4750 posts!!!
Each season there would be new a rivalry, and a new friendship earned. I'm grateful to have been a part of the journey, and for the friends I have found in it.

The race itself was filled by uncertainty and inconsistency. Post season 1, there would be new interpretations of the rules by HTI crew after every season. The 2nd place teams from last season still has not gotten the 10% fan bonus for promoting for example. This inconsistency soured the whole experience for a lot of people, myself included, and sadly I feel like a lot of teams that could have made it to the top quit because of this. There has been zero transparency with promotions. The worst part of all of it is that it would have been so easy to fix any issues simply by communicating with the community.

My impression of the very first Division 1 series is that it's incredibly sad not everyone had it in them to show respect for the legitimacy of the race. Selling off your team in the middle of the season as opposed to doing it before/after is just bad form.

In the end, I think the the two teams that worked the hardest on the transfer market and team building ended up #1 and #2. If anything, I think it's nice to see that hard work pays off.

4. Paliim (9160546): I did enjoy the race to the top division very much. It was one of the best experiences in Hattrick so far. When the race started, the main job was: "get rich!" and everybody started to train youngsters. I was pretty happy with my start squad and I started to train crossing. I bought some 18y wings with some secondary skills and trained them from 8->9 or from 9->10.
I've checked every week the teams with the most profits and in our federation we started a battle of profit. :)
That was good for me, because I am not a good trader but, this way, I've learned to make money with low investments.

I did that until the end of league IV and realized that it's getting serious now. So, I sold all my wings and bought, in season break between league IV and III, the core of my team, that I had still in League I.
My plan was to buy high skill as cheap as possible. I bought 31-32 years multiskillers that still could play at the age of 34-35 in the first division, to have as much as possible loyalty bonus in top league.
I switched training to Goalkeeping and I bought my keeper that is still into my club. I did skill trading with GK in the cup matches and got some money out of the cup bonus and cup games tickets.

Also, I was pretty lucky with my youth pulls and got a 1 million (428111845) pull and a 4.5 million (434926434) youth pull. That was really good money for my team.
From 3rd league, it was extremely hard to promote, because I lost two games in a row that I should have won (like 4 out of 5 games), but I still made it to 2nd division. Here, things were very smooth for my club and I made it to the best 8 teams which started the race.

Saddly, my team was overaged with 34-35 years players and the goal was to finish the race as good as possible. The first seven games were really good and only lost to Alpha, my first game, and away against Ercanto.
I've invested a lot of resources to beat Ercanto away: (627505407), but I still lost. I bought a defender the day before the game to make him believe I will choose CA and played MoTS with all resources on midfield and attack. The tactic wasn't so bad, but the engine rolled the dice against me.
I've played PiC on the next cup match and just had to decrease the training intensity a little bit to have full TS in the next league game.

The next MoTS was against Bacon the 8th match (627505428), an away game. I've failed again and that was pretty disappointing, because the race to first place was over after this result.
I've tried CA in the next home match and lowered the TI once again to have enough TS.
And I did play again MoTS against Ercanto (627505445) and obtained only a draw... A new TI drop has followed to have full TS and use MoTS against Alpha (627505455), but lost it again..
So I had MoTS four times into the first division and the result was only a draw. ^^

Very disappointing for me, but it was still much fun. I am really happy that I managed to finish 4th of the 5000 starting teams. :)

5. BINGOJOGI (10161240):Interviewer note: no comment from his side. If he answers on the dedicated thread, we'll link it here.

6. enricobig83 (2251151): The journey 'till the first HI League was easy and hard at the same time.

Easy because I've started with a clear strategy in my head: in Hattrick, you know, random is the Lord, so we have to rule it every match we play.
Easier thing for me is being rich: before and more than others players.

Hard because there were so many players starting the competition, and only 8 users could reach the top!

Anyway, the chance to play against so experienced and dedicated users has been very exciting. The 16 sales/season limit was a big barrier for my strategy: I suddenly realized that money couldn't be the only solution. I didn't need trading (Ercanto would not agree with me), but results. Immediately.

My rules were: buying old and cheap players (to win as soon as possible), expanding my arena every time it could be economically positive, trying to go on in the Cup, too. A new kind of "trading", a new kind of economic sustainability, everything was new for this competition.

Unfortunately, this season was not positive, beginning with an incredible defeat that pulled me early out of the Cup.

For that reason, I've started playing very aggressive: many MoTS & low training intensity were not enough to avoid playouts. Mocking playouts: Peo - an old friend of mine - was my opponent. Peo (1824733) is a very experienced user, playing from many years in high leagues in Italy. He was a hard opponent and he won: (632576258).

I just can be happy to let him my place. I'll be back!

7. Dagget-On-Slaf (13168050): When the idea of an international league came out, I was really happy about it. The fact that all managers start at the same stage was really motivating.

I had the goal to reach the top league as soon as possible and I managed this way by buying oldies, expect of my goalkeeper. With this management style and a bit of luck, I reached my goal and it has been really satisfying.

This season has been really tough and I unfortunately finished 7. I d like to congratulate all the others managers of top league for making this far. It is time for me to restructure my team.

All the best to everyone!

8. jimmie (2073178): Interviewer note: Hasn't sent an answer before the article was published. Last login seems to be in late August.

Link to the forum: (17221488.1).

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