Counter-Strike: Global Offensive is one the most famous title of the eSports industry. This title has come a long way and made its mark in the professional landscape. Owing to its hype and popularity, CSGO has attracted big investors. As a result, we are seeing big competitions organized exclusively for this game. One of the competition is the FACEIT Major: London 2018.
It is the 2nd major of the 2018 season and hosts an astonishing prize pool of one million dollars. The competition will start from 5th September where the best teams of CSGO will fight for Supremacy. The first stage of the competition is called “The New Challengers Stage” which will be in the best of one format. In the phase, 16 teams will compete and only 8 will qualify for the next stage.
The reason why we are picking this encounter of Team Liquid against Optic Gaming is that Optic is one of the most unpredictable teams, while Liquid has been the best side of the North American region. So, it will a great exercise to find which team has got the upper hand in this encounter. Now let’s go into the details.
Team Liquid vs OpTic Gaming (FACEIT Major: London 2018, September 05, Wednesday, 20:00 CEST, Best of 1):
Amongst the top 40 ranked teams, OpTic have the most interesting lineup. The lineup includes k0nfig and JUGI two players who are able to propel the team to victory time and again. They are joined by Snappi and cajunb, the experience of these two veteran players has proved vital for OpTic Gaming on so many occasions. On paper, this lineup has the quality to compete with the best teams in the world. However, since April, this team has delivered quite inconsistent performances which puts them in a tough spot at one of the biggest competition of the year.
Lack of Consistency from Optic
In the ESL Pro League Season 7 Finals and DreamHack Open Austin, Optic were eliminated at the group stage due to the lack of consistency in the team. However, in the following tournament, at the DreamHack Open Summer against all odds the team reached the grand finale. After the 2nd place at Dreamhack, the Danish side lost in the qualifiers of StarSeries i-League Season 6 and ESL One New York. In the qualifiers of StarSeries, the team dropped only two maps. Their star duo AWPer JUGI and up-and-coming were the stars for their team.
After this strong showing in the qualifier, this team had another low at the ZOTAC Cup Masters since they were eliminated by one of the lowest rated team of the competition, Ghost. This defeat took place a couple of weeks ago and this meeting against Ghost was one of the one series for K0nfig. He had the worst performance of his professional career, in this game and fortune didn’t favor OpTIc at DreamHack Masters Stockholm.
A couple of days ago, at the Dreamhack Stockholm, critics predicted that it would be a very difficult tournament for Optic since they were grouped up with two powerhouses, Fnatic and FaZe. However, Heroic, the 4th team of this group defied all odds and eliminated Fnatic and Optic from the competition. Coming to this Faceit Challengers Stage, Optic will have to get their act their together. The team might be an all-Danish line-up but the team still lacks coordination and consistency which could come to haunt them in few days’ time.
After the failures of Cloud 9 in 2018, it looks like Team Liquid is the last hope of the North American region at big events. Team Liquid had quite a dominant showing at the ESL One Belo Horizonte, ECS Season 5 and 2018 ELEAGUE Premier. In these three major competitions of the year, they showed some amazing performances against top-ranked teams in the world. The stats also show that Team Liquid is the only NA team that had a strong showing against two other top-five ranked teams, Natus Vincere and MIBR.
At the London Major, all eyes will be on the famous Liquid trio Keith “NAF“ Markovic, Jonathan “EliGE“ Jablonowski and Russel “Twistzz“ Van Dulken. These three have been playing exceptionally on the big stage. Owing to their growing reputation and dominance, some label Team Liquid as the team to take the first spot and Faceit Major. After 2nd and 3rd place finishes at major tournaments this year, Liquid may very well win the Faceit Major.
NAF, the star of Team Liquid
It goes without saying that Liquid will qualify for the next stage of the competition unless some very surprising result takes place. The team has been a force to reckoned with all year, possibly owing to the exceptional performance of NAF. Before his addition to the side, Team Liquid was ranked 14th in the global ranking. After his arrival, the team has climbed to the 3rd spot. He was also part of the Optic lineup that won the ELEAGUE season two. NAF has the quality to be one of the best players on the biggest occasions. He is the only hope for the North American region to win this Major. The arrival of TACO will only improve their chances. But the NA region is relying on NAF to shine on the big stage.
The Final Verdict
After a comprehensive look at the stats of both the teams, it is a clear-cut decision that Team Liquid is the clear winner. The quality gap between the two teams is too big. At the moment, the lineup of Team Liquid is considered to be the strongest in 2018. Meanwhile, their opponents Optic Gaming are struggling to find the right rhythm. On paper, Optic is quite powerful but in the game, they are not efficient enough to be a strong team. So, it is highly likely that Team Liquid will be starting their Faceit Campaign with a win. Lastly, the last time when these two teams met, Team Liquid won 2-0 in the best of 3 series.
Odds on bookmakers
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