Fnatic have benched Owen “smooya” Butterfield from their active CSGO division, the British-Swedish lineup announced today on their Twitter handle. This change comes after Fnatic’s elimination from the Group stage of the ongoing IEM Katowice 2022 where they were denied a spot further by Astralis.
smooya joined Fnatic on a three-month trial back in October 2021, replacing Jack “Jackinho” Ström Mattsson on the main roster. The Brit shook the community with some charismatic results across a plethora of tournaments including championship at the most notable DreamHack Open November 2021 followed by a mid table finish at the IEM Winter 2021. However, smooya’s form seemed to enter a downward spiral with dwindling individual performances across Funspark ULTI 2021 finals and the Pinnacle Winter Series 1.
The vacated position will now be filled by Fnatic Rising (Academy) player Lulian ‘regali’ Harjău . The 19-year-old Romanian joined Fnatic Rising in July 2021 and has dominated the scene with a 1.15 rating across a series of WePlay and other smaller events, according to HLTV.org. regali is no stranger to Fnatic’s British-Swedish roster as he briefly trialed with the team after Jackinho was moved to the bench in October.
Mr. Andreas Samuelsson, Fnatic’s team director said in a press release,
Fnatic is set to debut with regali at the ESL Pro League Season 15 where they lock horns with the Ninjas In Pyjamas in their opener on March 10.
The team is now:
- Alex “ALEX” McMeekin
- William “mezii” Merriman
- Iulian “regali” Harjău
- Freddy “KRIMZ” Johansson
- Ludvig “Brollan” Brolin
- Jamie “keita” Hall (Head coach)
- Owen “smooya” Butterfield (Inactive)