posted by cLaun,
Jonathan 'Loda' Berg, Aydin 'INSaNIA' Sarkohi & Omar 'Madara' Dabachach talk about the recent roster change, past troubles, future plans, leadership and much more in an interview following the medical departure of Michael 'm`ICKe' Vu and the addition of Madara in an exclusive joinDOTA interview.


How will the role distribution look like moving forward with Micke, a flexible mid player, being replaced by Madara who has mostly been playing safe lane carry in the past?

Aydin 'INSaNIA' Sarkohi: Micke has been our position 1 player in the past few months. In that sense I'm confident Madara will fill his shoes well. Of course having Micke flex to mid was a strength that we'll lack, but Madara brings other strengths that I'm sure we'll be able to use.

What does Madara bring to the team and why did you choose him to fill in for Micke?

Aydin 'INSaNIA' Sarkohi: Madara has proven in the past that he's a reliable carry player, especially in high pressure situations. Micke was in a lot of ways the foundation upon which we had built our playstyle and the person we directed our games around. Having a consistent player as a stand-in was something we were looking for. After trying some scrims, we felt like Madara filled that role very well.

Is Madara only a temporary solution or will you reevaluate the situation based on the development of Micke’s condition?

Jonathan 'Loda' Berg: As it is now Madara is just a stand-in for the Major qualifiers, and we are planning on Micke returning to the team in about one month. That being said, I´m very happy we could get such a talented stand-in, and I´m excited going into the qualifiers.



With frequent bootcamps, a team house and long standing members in the organisation, Alliance seems a lot like a family. How does that work for players and the organisation?

Aydin 'INSaNIA' Sarkohi: On the organisational side you would have to ask Loda, but I personally really like the atmosphere that we've managed to create between each other. It feels easy to discuss things and reach conclusions. The long bootcamps are something I've always wanted because I feel like that's the time we progress the most as a team. Alliance really tries to make our environment the best it can possibly be to perform. Shout-out to Chef P.

Jonathan 'Loda' Berg: I strongly believe we were one of the first teams in the world with this management style. Since back in 2012-13, we have had a strong belief that we wanted everyone on the team to be very committed to each other even outside of the game. Especially for a team game, winning for yourself is not enough motivation long term, it comes with wanting to win for your teammate, as well as bring honor to the team you represent. This applies across our whole organization. Our players are encouraged from Day 1 of signing to interact with everyone in the Alliance family (which includes our fans) even if you are in a different division. We have obviously tried different approaches as well over the year, such as when we attempted to be more polished and businesslike both internally and externally, however it did not fit us long-term.

It is definitely not the easiest way to run a business but we have made it work - everyone who is working with Alliance right now is committed this familiar mindset with not only our players but our fans as well, which makes it easier for us to continue that legacy.

Towards the beginning of the season you looked like a strong team, especially online. Why did this change and what are the reasons for the inability to translate online strengths into offline play?

Aydin 'INSaNIA' Sarkohi: To be entirely honest, some members of our team have gone through some issues outside of the game, and I think it has affected people’s personal motivation and sole focus on Dota. With the level of competition at the moment, if you're not fully focused on Dota, it feels like teams outpace you when it comes to improvement. Hopefully all of that will be resolved soon and we can perform again like we did at the beginning of the season.

What are the short and long term goals of this Alliance roster? How are you looking to achieve them and can this roster reach the heights of past Alliance lineups?

Jonathan 'Loda' Berg: Our short term goal is obviously to qualify for the major in Disneyland. It´s going to be really tough, especially going into it without Micke, but I think it´s a great opportunity for the rest of the guys on the team to show what they can do, and grow a bit by themselves. We are aiming to reach this year´s TI for sure, and it´s something I know we can do.

The long term goal overall is to become a real powerhouse again, and I do believe that this roster can reach the heights of Alliance´s past. As long as we can keep moving forward, and as long as everyone on the team works as hard as each other it´s just a matter of time. This year I´m happy if we can reach TI and place top 10. Next year I want to be one of the clear contenders for the Aegis.

How has iNsania developed as a drafter and captain since he joined you as a rather inexperienced leader?

Jonathan 'Loda' Berg: I think he has developed immensely as a captain, drafter and player. It´s a tricky situation to be the captain of a team, especially one with your friends in it. Nowadays he´s a lot more direct and professional about things, whether it be about what he wants to achieve or how he wants to play a draft. I also feel that he has grown more into a point where he really feels responsible for the team and the players in it.



Madara, you were planning on taking a break to grind ranked games and stream. What makes Alliance such a good fit for you to come back into the competitive scene?

Omar 'Madara' Dabachach: Alliance is a great team, the boys are nice and really good players so it feels easy to play with them. I really love competing and playing with Alliance is a really good chance so it felt natural coming back so soon.

What do you expect to accomplish with Alliance that you didn't see in Vega?

Omar 'Madara' Dabachach: For the short time that we have practiced I feel that the team is really strong. Once we find out how we exactly want to play and practice more I believe that we can do great. My expectations are what I always try to achieve which is to be the best so I will try my hardest to make this team the best aswell.

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