Rio Major and ESL Cologne change qualification

Elliott Griffiths
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Illustration by @NovaH

Sorry Americans, but ESL has used the Coronavirus situation to put a number on just how inferior you are to Europeans.

You're a third as good - apparently. The new invite system for ESL Cologne has been split based on how good the regions are, with six EU and two NA teams getting direct invites based on the ESL rankings (yuck).

Americans will get three of the eight invites into the play-ins, with one Asian and one Oceanic team getting an invite. There are no prizes for guessing which teams are getting those - it's the same teams as always, Renegades and TYLOO.

NaVi, Astralis, fnatic, G2, mousesports, FaZe, Team Liquid, 100 Thieves is what it currently looks like. Salivating yet?

The play-ins stage is pretty stacked too, with Vitality, NiP, MAD Lions, EG, C9 and FURIA joining the two Eastern representatives for a spot in the big bloody thing in the big bloody stadium - hopefully. Nothing has been postponed yet.

Every other team will have to qualify for the play-ins, leaving teams like OG, BIG, ENCE, VP, MIBR and North to fight it out in the slums of online qualifiers, presumably.

April 9, 2020

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