Article

European and North American sides compete in the penultimate week of the ESL Pro League Season 5

Peter Stewart
Contributing Editor
Share this article:

There is now only two weeks remaining, and that can only mean one thing, more edge-of-your-seat, intense, thrilling, and every other suitable adjective out there, as lineups from across both regions try to acquire more points in their hopes of qualifying for the ESL Pro League Season 5 finals before we reach the final week.

Here is everything you need to know for the ninth week of the ESL Pro League!

Europe

Standings

At the end of Week 8, it was again Astralis that led the European ESL Pro League standings, ahead of second place side North, after their thrilling matchup against Swedish giants, Ninjas in Pyjamas, which concluded 1-1 in the two map series with a 16-12 win on de_inferno, and a close 16-12 loss on de_cache. Coming off of that result, it put the Danish side within touching distance of receiving their invite to the ESL Pro League Season 5 finals with a total of 39 points acquired from 20 played matches. With North being in second, also with 39 points, it means that there is two Danish sides at the top of the league, is this the year of the Danes?

It’s been a common occurrence throughout this season, but although Astralis is leading the European standings, the other teams in and around the qualification zone, are only a few points away from claiming the number one spot, or just acquiring a spot in the top 6, generally. For the teams that have worked hard enough to hold a spot within the top 6, despite any dry periods that may have occurred, there is only a maximum of six points between them and the leader, so in reality, anything could happen. Need evidence? Look at G2 Esports, they have shot up into fifth place with the chance of qualifying for the offline finals, despite a horrific start to their Pro League campaign.

The opposite end of the table has slowly gotten more interesting over the past couple of weeks, for all of the wrong reasons though, unfortunately. With poor performances, Virtus.pro and Team EnVyUs have slowly slipped down the standings to 12th and 13th place, respectively, and ultimately, this means, if they’re not careful, they could end up in the relegation matches that are set to take place one week after the conclusion of the online league. We’ll just have to wait and see what happens over the next couple of weeks.

Below, you can find an updated look at the European ESL Pro League Season 5 standings at the end of week eight:

Hot Match of the Week - Astralis versus G2 Esports

This week’s Hot Match of the Week for the European region features an intense battle between the number one team in the world, Astralis, who also top the European standings, and G2 Esports, a side that has bursted into the qualification zone after a horrendous start to to their Pro League campaign.

Astralis got off to a steady start to the ESL Pro League Season 5 with a 4-2 win/loss recording, but if you take into consideration their major championship win at the ELEAGUE Major 2017, many people expected a better start. However, after a three loss streak with the absence of Nicolai “device” Reedtz due to injury, the Danish side sprung back into action and have never wavered from the qualification zone since, now holding the number one spot in the league with 39 points and a 13-7 win/loss record.

Since their first major championship win this year, the Danish side have gone on to continue their strong performance, with their worst placement coming from a third place at the DreamHack Masters Las Vegas 2017, and their best finish being a first place at the IEM Katowice 2017 event last month. It’s great to see this team still performing well with consistent because sometimes, after such a big win, teams can fall off the face of the earth.

G2 Esports, Astralis’ opponent, has been through more than your average team over the past few months since their controversial roster change with Team EnVyUs during the ‘French Revolution 2.0.’ For a high percentage of season 5, the French side have been in the bottom three, or in outright last place all together, and ultimately looking like they were going to be relegated from the pro division just a few weeks in. However, fortunately for G2, fate was at hand, and sent them in an entirely different direction.

After winning 10 matches in a row, against the like of Fnatic, Ninjas in Pyjamas, and Natus Vincere, the French ‘gods’ have zoomed into fifth place with 33 points, ahead of FaZe Clan, and now they really look like they could receive an invitation to the season finals. However, in the next couple of weeks, G2 are set to come up against some very fierce competition. Excluding their match against Astralis, the French have to come up against Virtus.pro and FaZe, so their position could change for the worse, but I really hope it doesn’t, it would be such an incredible storyline for the finals in Dallas, Texas.

Outside of the ESL Pro League Season 5, the French side competed at their first LAN as a complete roster in Kiev, Ukraine for the SL i-League StarSeries event. Although the side did finish 5th-8th after being defeated by the eventual winners, FaZe Clan, the French ‘super team’ did show some promising signs, managing to take down a number of other top sides, including NiP, HellRaisers, and SK Gaming. So, if they do make it to Texas, I’m excited to see how they’ll perform in their second LAN event.

This is another of one of those matches that you most certainly do not want to take an eye off so, to catch all of the action, tune into our YouTube exclusive livestream at 19:00 CEST to watch it unravel with the lovely casting duo of Henry “HenryG” Greer and Matthew “Sadokist” Trivett.

North America

Standings

At the end of another week of action, the North American region is again led by Brazilian dominators, SK Gaming, with a total of 48 points from the 20 matches they have played, thus leaving the Brazilians with a 16-4 win/loss record. Just sitting behind them on 45 points is their Brazilian Brothers, Immortals, and the ‘NA Kings of Pro league,’  Cloud 9, all of which are just a few wins away from cementing their invite to the ESL Pro League Season 5 finals in June.

Throughout the majority of this season, a number of teams have always been relatively close to each other, making the matches very interesting, especially as we enter the penultimate week of games. At this point in the league, there is four teams that just sit out side of the all important qualification zone that, depending on their own performance and other teams results, could put them into a qualifying position. These four teams include OpTic Gaming, and Counter Logic Gaming, both sitting on 33 points, who are set to come against each other in the final week of matches so we could be about to witness some significant changes to the standings.

For the bottom three sides, Rush, Winterfox, and former Selfless Gaming side, The Foundation -an ironic name considering their position- it’s already game over with a combined total of 18 points from 57 matches going into Week 9. It’s difficult to say which side is definitely going to be instantly relegated from the Pro League, but as it stands, everybody is looking at the The Foundation side, but with that being said, they do have three games in hand over the remainder of the teams in the league, so who knows what’s going to go down.

Below, you can find an updated view of the North American ESL Pro League Season 5 standings at the end of week eight:

The penultimate week of action is here!

Tune into ESL CS:GO YouTube channel to watch the best teams in CS:GO battle for their spot at offline finals in Dallas, Texas from June 3-4. If you want to watch the season finals live, you can purchase tickets here whilst they are still available.

For live coverage, and all of the latest updates on the ESL Pro League, be sure to follow ESL Counter-Strike on Twitter and Facebook.