A Rejuvenated FaZe Clan Qualifies For IEM Cologne cover image

A Rejuvenated FaZe Clan Qualifies For IEM Cologne

The third IEM Cologne Play-In team to qualify is the star-studded FaZe Clan.

FaZe Clan is the third team to qualify for IEM Cologne 2021 after dramatic matches against EG and Complexity.

FaZe Clan clinch spot against EG and Complexity

2021 has far from treated the international roster of FaZe well during the online era. With a near 25%-win rate, rapid decline down the ranking (as low as 36th), and the lack of opportunities to play alongside one another found the lineup to crash out of nearly every tournament in last place. The organization opted to bench Marcelo "coldzera" David and bring back longtime star Olof "olofmeister" Kajbjer. Things looked a bit better at the BLAST Premier Spring finals as far as the intangibles were concerned, but the result remained the same.

The organization still had the event to hold out for on the horizon, however. LAN awaited the veterans FaZe Clan in Cologne. With the experience that the roster collectively held, they believed that the environment shift would lend the lineup the help they needed to pass by the last bit of trouble they were having online…and help it did. The squad had the toughest route needed to qualify for the prestigious event.

First, they needed to overcome the slumbering NA giants of Evil Geniuses. In a tight 28 round affair on Mirage, the youngsters of Russel “Twistzz” Van Dulken and Helvijs “broky” Saukants bailed the boys in red from a frightening Michal “MICHU” Muller. Although the Polish rifler caused quite a thorn in the side for FaZe, some crisp clutching from Twistzz pulled them over the line.

On the other side of their bracket, Complexity pulled off a much-needed comeback against Asia's best, Vici Gaming. Kristian “k0nfig” Wienecke continued his red-hot online form into his opening round of the Play-Ins and looked dangerous heading into the international clash. A deeper map pool and an in-form roster put the Juggernaut in pole position to qualify for the main event. However, Twistzz had other plans.

Alongside the watchful eye of broky, once again the dynamic duo edged their map pick of Dust 2 past Complexity and prepared for the tribulation that was about to unfold on Complexity’s map pick of Nuke. However, the team passed the map with flying colors as the veterans, Finn “karrigan” Andersen and olofmeister, took their turn to stomp the young stars of Complexity down to the lower bracket and successfully qualify for IEM Cologne’s main event.

(Photo Credit: ESL) Karrigan in jubilation after their IEM Cologne qualification
(Photo Credit: ESL) Karrigan in jubilation after their IEM Cologne qualification

The FaZe Best of 3 droughts have finally come to an end with their qualification, but the new bosses of Counter-Strike await them in the main event. Heroic, Gambit, Natus Vincere, and G2 all look hot to trot after their online success and look to compound on it in Cologne as well. Hungry to prove the world their legitimacy, FaZe now jump out of the frying pan and into the fire of IEM Cologne.

As for Benjamin “BlameF” Bremer’s Complexity, they are now relegated to the elimination stage where they must fight against the French underdogs of LDLC. A great showing turned sour for the international squad still has its chances of sweetening again tomorrow for the Juggernaut. Catch their game at 10:45 ET on ESL’s main broadcast tomorrow.

Stay tuned to esports.gg for more CSGO news and IEM Cologne 2021 coverage. You can also check out our preview of the event, with odds presented by Midnite here.