Danish Derby kicks off IEM Katowice

The first big event of the year is about to start.

Astralis and Heroic will go head-to-head in the first game at the Play-in tournament in Katowice, where 16 teams will fight for eight spots at the main event starting on Saturday.

Cloud9, BetBoom, ENCE, BIG, FURIA, Spirit, GamerLegion, and Virtus.pro are also in the mix of teams in the qualifier that kicks off with a best of one match before heading onto the classic bo3.

You can see the schedule for the Play-in tournament here: (CET)


15.30: Heroic – Astralis
15.30: Eternal Fire – BetBoom
16.30: Cloud9 – Rebels
16.30: ENCE – BIG
17.30: Spirit – Apeks
17.30: GamerLegion – M80
18.30: FURIA – TheMongolz
18.30: Rooster – Virtus.pro
19.30: Cloud9/Rebels – Eternal Fire/BetBoom
19.30: Heroic/Astralis – ENCE/BIG

What to look out for:

Astralis – Can the Danes continue the very promising start to 2024? A good performance at IEM Katowice could elevate the Danes to be among the contenders for the Copenhagen Major later this year. There will be extra focus on Nicolai "dev1ce" Reedtz after he delivered one of his worst tournaments at the BLAST qualifier last week.

ENCE – The general feeling is that it will not be easy for ENCE at the start of 2024. The dismantlement of the successful roster led by Marco "Snappi" Pfeiffer leaves only Paweł "dycha" Dycha remaining from the core that challenged Vitality, FaZe, and G2 last year. Now Lukas "gla1ve" Rossander has taken over the reins with four Polish teammates on the roster. A difficult task for the famous in-game leader, who has started his redemption arc with the perhaps biggest challenge of his career. IEM Katowice will be the first glimpse of the new roster in action.

FURIA – It’s been six months since Gabriel "FalleN" Toledo moved to FURIA. The Brazilian roster ended 2023 by winning the Elisa Masters Espoo tournament in Finland to take their first tournament win against European teams since 2021. Can we finally believe in FURIA again? Or will 2024 be a year of disappointment for the huge Brazilian CS scene?

Eternal Fire – A 3-0 record at the closed European RMR qualifier made most of the CS community raise eyebrows. The everchanging Turkish roster has now been together for eight months straight, and that could be the continuity that they have been missing the past years, where there have been more disappointments than successes for the team, which is still a player-owned organization.

The main tournament will start February 3rd. Here FaZe, Falcons, NAVI, Complexity, Vitality, G2, Monte, and MOUZ enters the tournament.

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