The teams have been finalized for one of the biggest Counter-Strike: Global Offensive tournaments of the year: Intel Extreme Masters Cologne. ESL has announced the 24 teams taking part in IEM Cologne — both play-in teams and those that have directly qualified.
IEM Cologne play-in teams
The sixteen teams that are heading to the IEM Cologne play-in are:
- Team Vitality
- Complexity Gaming
- Team Spirit
- Imperial Esports
- Movistar Riders
- paiN Gaming
These teams qualified through their accumulated ESL circuit points garnered from previous select CS:GO events. Teams qualified through their specific region with the exception of seven teams that qualified based on their overall world rankings: BIG, Astralis, Team Spirit, Imperial Esports, Movistar Riders, paiN Gaming and MOUZ. The final team, Sprout, qualified by winning ESL Meisterschaft Spring 2022.
IEM Cologne directly qualified teams
The remaining eight teams were the top from their regions and move directly into the main event, bypassing the play-ins. They are:
- FaZe Clan
- Natus Vincere
- G2 Esports
- Ninjas in Pyjamas
- FURIA Esports
- Team Liquid
These were the top teams from the Road to Cologne and some of the overall best teams in the world.
From July 5-17, IEM Cologne brings the best teams in the world together in Cologne, Germany. At the event, teams will compete for a whopping $1 million in prize money, as well as a notch on the IEM Grand Slam.
Teams must compete through a double-elimination bracket play-in stage to reach the group stage of the event. There, another double-elimination bracket awaits. The top three teams from each of the two groups advances to the play-offs, with the group winner moving directly to the semifinals.
The playoffs will take place in front of a crowd at the Lanxess Arena in Cologne. Teams will have no second chances in the single-elimination format that leads to a final best of five grandfinals.
Coby Zucker is Upcomer's resident CS:GO writer. He's also played League of Legends at the collegiate level and is a frequent visitor in TFT Challenger Elo. He's a firm believer that Toronto should be the next big esports hub city.