This is why EMEA teams will crush it at Champions

posted by jacpaka,
Which team enters VCT Champions as EMEA's favourite? Who are the hottest contenders to claim the title as the world's best VALORANT team? Read about Yinsu Collin's thoughts on which teams to watch at VCT Champions! VCT Champions is just around the corner and we're taking the chance to have a look at the contestants from EMEA. With 4 out of 16 teams, our region boasts the most representatives at the world championship. Thanks to Gambit Esports, who claimed their spot through Masters Berlin, there were still three slots open for EMEA – two by circuit points and one for the winner of the Last Chance Qualifier. With Gambit, Acend, Fnatic and Team Liquid, our region has excellent chances of getting top results and perhaps bringing home the VCT Champions trophy.



Can Gambit repeat their success from Masters Berlin?



Gambit enter the tournament as favourites after winning both the EMEA Stage 3 Challengers Playoffs and Masters 3. Although coach Engh wasn't satisfied with how the preparations went at the beginning of their practice, Gambit have maintained their competitive attitude and will display their reinvigorated energy and new strats for the world championship. Showing off the same performance as then at Masters 3 will be tough as "the level of competition has gotten even higher", says Yinsu Collins, host of the VCT.

The Russian team considers Raccoon and Vikings tough opponents in their group but if they make it through the Group Stage, Gambit have great chances of going even further as they traditionally perform better the longer they play in a tournament. Yinsu is excited to watch the teams compete against Gambit: "Now every team knows how they play and what they like to do, it'd be interesting to see what else they have prepared."



Group C



ru Gambit Esports
br Team Vikings
ph Team Secret
jp Crazy Raccoons

As one of the most consistent teams from EU, Acend might not have got the most notable results during the recent stages of global competition, yet they managed to perform in their last tournaments. At the second Red Bull Home Ground, they took down the Masters 3 winners Gambit in the playoffs. Mehmet Yağız 'cNed' İpek is often regarded as the best player in EMEA and expected to play his best when competing for the world's title. One of the strongest opponents in their group will be Team Envy from NA, which made it into the previous Masters 3 finale against Gambit.

Group A



eu Acend
us Team Envy
th X10 CRIT
br Keyd Stars

The favourite from EMEA: Team Liquid



Liquid come to the event as one of the strongest teams EMEA has to offer. Apart from not losing any official match lately, the roster around Adil 'ScreaM' Benrlitom also only gave up two maps during the Last Chance Qualifier of EMEA – one against a very strong looking G2 Esports, the other one against Guild Esports in the Grand Final. Both the LCQ and the Red Bull Home Ground #2 event left Liquid undefeated. "This is the best Liquid has ever looked and with a couple of first-place finishes under their belt recently at EMEA, I believe they will have a very good chance to make the finals at Champions," says Yinsu.



It seems like ScreaM's brother Nabil 'Nivera' Benrlitom was the last piece to puzzle which stopped and reversed their downturn after the second Stage of VCT EMEA. Expert Yinsu is thrilled about watching Nivera perform at Champions: "Being able to adapt to teams in EMEA is one thing but if he's able to perform against international teams, Team Liquid will have a great chance to make it far." With Masters 2 winners Sentinels, which many believe to have held back at Masters 3, Liquid have a high-tier opponent in their group, so we may see an extremely exciting NA vs EMEA showdown between them early on.



Group B



us Sentinels
cl KRÜ Esports
eu Team Liquid
br FURIA Esports

Fnatic are the lucky losers from third Stage. Thanks to Gambit who booked their tickets by winning Masters 3, they were able to enter Champions by Circuit Points. We haven’t seen a lot of games from Fnatic lately since they didn't make it to Masters Berlin and could also skip the LCQ because of their Circuit Point count. Since then they most notably participated in Red Bull Home Ground #2, but ultimately fell short in the Quarterfinals with a 0-2 (06-13 & 08-13) against Team Liquid. In contrast to our other EMEA teams, the roster around Jake 'Boaster' Howlett enters the tournament as a dark horse and has yet to prove what it's capable of.



Group D



kr Vision Strikers
eu Fnatic
th FULL SENSE
us Cloud9 Blue

Talking about what kind of showdown we will get in the Grand Final, Yinsu is pretty sure to see a matchup we have already seen from previous international tournaments: "Every final has been NA vs EMEA so far, so I feel like we could get another scenario where it might happen," suspects the VCT host. "However, I wouldn’t be surprised at all if Vision Strikers makes it there too."

New strategies on Fracture incoming



Since the new agent Chamber will not celebrate his competitive debut on the Champions' stage, there is another exciting piece of new content left to look out for: the new map Fracture. Yinsu expects the EMEA teams to show us entirely new strats on this map: "I wouldn’t be surprised if some of the other regions decide to ban this map against us."

Head over to our Champions article to read everything you need to know about the tournament's format, schedule and teams:



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Photo credit: Riot Games

  • jacpaka

    jacpaka

    Jacqueline Segeth
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