HomeNewsCounter Strike: Global OffensiveIEM Cologne 2021 format explained, schedule and prize pool

IEM Cologne 2021 format explained, schedule and prize pool

CSGO's first offline event of 2021 is finally upon us, and along it brings tons of emotions, esports spirit, and a prize pool of whopping $1 million.

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Counter-Strike: Global Offensive’s first offline event is finally upon us, and along it brings tons of emotions, esports spirit, and a prize pool of whopping $1 million. 

Professional players return to their home turf: LAN after 491 days, which marks IEM Cologne 2021 as one of the historical tournaments for CSGO. The event will go live without a live audience, but players will enjoy all the perks of an offline game, including stable ping. 

While IEM Cologne is generally a reputed event, it’s easily one of the most exciting tournaments in history this year, specifically. LAN was put on pause after the global outbreak of COVID-19, and now that the world has started to heal, the games have started to go back to normal as well. CSGO fans are pumped about watching their favourite players battle it out for the lion’s share of $1 million that will be distributed among the winners. 

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If you’ve been out of touch with CSGO events like a lot of people in 2021, this guide will help you catch up with everything you need to know about IEM Cologne 2021. 

IEM Cologne 2021 format explained

IEM Cologne features 24 CS:GO teams taking part in three phases of play-in, group stage, and play-offs. Fans can watch the battle live from the Cathedral of Counter-Strike for the first time since COVID-19. The fight for the trophy begins on July 6 and will run till July 18. 

All matches will occur in a best of three (BO3) fashion, except BO1 of opening matches and BO5 in Grand Final. Teams will lock horns at the play-ins in a double-elimination bracket with best-of-one matches at the opening round. Eight teams that make it unscathed out of the opening matches will enter group stage. Here they’ll will join six teams from Europe and two from North America. 

This set of 16 will be divided into two groups, hence leading to group stage. A double elimination bracket, and best of three matches will see the winners book a direct slot in the semi-finals. Losers will get a second chance at the quarterfinals. The series will near its end with Playoffs, and ultimately the Grand finals on July 18th. 

Eight teams have qualified directly for the Group Stage through ESL Pro Tour standings, which award eight spots in the IEM Cologne group stage, while 16 teams will compete in the Play-in Stage. 

Here are the eight teams qualified for group stage: 

  • Gambit Esports
  • Natus Vincere
  • Heroic
  • Virtus Pro
  • Astralis
  • G2 Esports
  • FURIA Esports
  • Team Liquid

IEM Cologne 2021 Prize pool 

The teams will battle it out in the ballroom of Hyatt Regency hotel in Cologne for 1$ million with $400,000, 1,800 ESL Points, and 3,200 BLAST Points going to the first winner. The runner up will grab $180,000, 1,400 ESL Points, and 1,600 BLAST Points. Rest of the participants will also be recieving a huge chunk of prize pool and ESL points. 

How to watch ESL One Cologne 2021? 

ESL One Cologne 2021 won’t have a live audience, but fans can enjoy the matches live from their homes on ESL’s Twitch and YouTube Channel. The VODs and clips will be uploaded on the channel if you fail to catch them live. 

ESL One Cologne Schedule 

July 8

Photo Snapshot Via HLTV

Group A upper bracket round one

6:30am Central Time: Gambit Esports vs. TBD

6:30am CT: Team Liquid vs. TBD

9:45am CT: Virtus Pro vs. TBD

9:45am CT: G2 Esports vs. TBD

Group B upper bracket round one

1pm CT: Natus Vincere vs. TBD

1pm CT: FURIA Esports vs. TBD

July 9

Group B upper bracket round one

6:30am Central Time: Astralis vs. TBD

6:30am CT: Heroic vs. TBD

Group A upper bracket round two

9:45am CT: TBD vs. TBD

1pm CT: TBD vs. TBD

Group A lower bracket round one

9:45am CT: TBD vs. TBD

1pm CT: TBD vs. TBD

July 10

Group B lower bracket round one

6:30am Central Time: TBD vs. TBD

6:30am CT: TBD vs. TBD

Group A lower bracket round two

9:45am CT: TBD vs. TBD

1pm CT: TBD vs. TBD

Group B upper bracket round two

9:45am CT: TBD vs. TBD

1pm CT: TBD vs. TBD

July 11

Group B lower bracket round two

6:30am Central Time: TBD vs. TBD

6:30am CT: TBD vs. TBD

9:45am CT: Group A upper bracket round three

9:45am CT: Group A lower bracket round three

1pm CT: Group B upper bracket round three

1pm CT: Group B lower bracket round three

July 16

Photo Snapshot Via HLTV

9am Central Time: Quarterfinal No. 1

12:15pm CT: Quarterfinal No. 2

July 17

9am Central Time: Semifinal No. 1

12:15pm CT: Semifinal No. 2

July 18

9am Central Time: Grand Finals (BO5)

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