IEM Cologne 2023: Tough tournament for ITB and Fnatic as playoffs approach

Fnatic at IEM Cologne 2023

Esports News UK’s IEM Cologne 2023 and Counter-Strike coverage is powered by Predator Gaming (article also contains affiliate links; you must be aged 18 or over to gamble, please bet responsibly)

IEM Cologne 2023 is reaching its latter stages, as the world’s best Counter-Strike teams do battle – and it’s unfortunately not been plain sailing for UK-headquartered esports organisations.

Into the Breach, who pulled off an incredible feat to reach top eight in the Paris Major earlier this year, were knocked out early in the play-ins after losing 16-5 to Ninjas in Pyjamas before falling 2-0 to MongolZ.

ITB said in a tweet their performance was ‘just not good enough – but it’s never easy at this level’.

“Time for a breather, a reset and to come back stronger,” they said.

ITB’s participation in IEM Cologne 2023 also comes a few weeks after ITB’s roster changes, with volt and CYPHER being replaced by Bymas and NEOFRAG.

Another UK-headquartered organisation, Fnatic, were also knocked out of IEM Cologne 2023 following a 2-0 defeat to Ence and a 2-1 loss to GamerLegion in the group stage.

It came after a solid run in the play-ins, with Fnatic beating Complexity, 9ineand Cloud9 before their losses.

Fnatic said: “We fought hard, and we defied some odds but in the end it was not enough as we mark our exit at IEM Cologne 2023. With a new roster, we’re proud of the mark we’ve made so far and are excited to see this roster develop further and further. To the fans, thank you for supporting us throughout, we will learn, we will improve and we will see you all at Gamers8.”

IEM Cologne 2023 playoffs approach

Looking forwards then, and the first teams to qualify for the IEM Cologne 2023 playoffs have been confirmed.

Vitality (Group B runners-up) will face Cloud9 (Group A lower bracket winners) in the playoffs, with G2 also there after finishing Group B winners (following a 2-1 win over Vitality).

At the time of writing, the other playoffs teams are to be confirmed, but Heroic, Ence, Navi and Astralis are all in contention.

As we reach the latter stage of the tournament, why not place a bet on the GG Bet website?

Last year, IEM Cologne 2022 was won by Faze Clan, with Navi runners-up.

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