The 2023 season comes to an end in CS:GO, now it’s time to wait for the next big event, the legendary IEM of Katowice, which begins on January 31.
Overall, the tournament is shaping up to be the first S-Tier massive event that will keep CS:GO fans entertained for two weeks with all the matches going on. Final tournament details are still being worked out by its organizers, but a full csgo esports schedule, including dates for all matches, broadcast info, and talent will be released soon.
As for the invites for IEM Katowice 2023, all the teams have been revealed. Sixteen top play-in teams in CS:GO from all over the globe, who will visit Poland in January, have been made known, with eight more squads directly qualified for the Group Stage. Thus, let’s take a closer look at the teams invited and the tournament format itself.
Brief Intro About the Tournament
As we have said earlier, the IEM Katowice tournament will start on January 31st with Play-In matches. Sixteen teams will compete in the double-elimination format. The opening matches will be Best of 1, all the following fixtures will be Best of 3.
Eight top teams will be advanced to the Group Stage where they join other eight teams to compete against each other in a double-elimination format, like the one in GSL. All fixtures will be Best of 3 in both the Group Stage and the Playoffs.
Speaking of the Playoffs, the bottom five teams from each group will have to drop and go home, while the top three teams will go into the next round, as follows below:
- 1st place squads move to the Semifinals
- 2nd place squads move to the Quarterfinals as the High Seeds
- 3rd place squads move to the Quarterfinals as the Low Seeds
The Grand Final will be played in the Best of 5 at the Spodek Arena on February 12th. Below, you will find the list of attendees for the upcoming major CS:GO tournament.
All Teams Invited to IEM Katowice 2023
Since IEM in Katowice is a tournament with a total of 24 teams competing, we are in for a great number of some really exciting matches. In that light, eight of the best teams in the CS:GO competitive scene will show their skill and worth in the Group Stage, while the remaining sixteen participants will compete in Play-In matches before the main event.
Directly Qualified Teams
Among the direct invites for IEM Katowice, you will find FaZe Clan, the champions of the last two important events in the game’s ecosystem, IEM Katowice 2023 and ESL Pro League S15.
The American team will be joined by defending Major champions NaVi, as well as the winners of the BLAST Premier: World Finals and the runners-up of this year’s Katowice event, G2 Esports.
These three great champions are joined by Heroic, Team Vitality, Team Liquid, Outsiders, and MOUZ, teams that have performed significantly throughout the season of 2023.
All these eight organizations will face, from February 2, the eight best teams from the Play-In Stage.
In the Play-In stage of the event, with a date set for January 31st, sixteen great teams from the professional CS:GO scene appear, but only eight of them as mentioned above will advance to the main event. Of all of them, Fnatic and Permitta Esports earned their spots thanks to winning the Elisa Masters Espoo and the Mistrzostwa Polski, respectively.
The remaining fourteen teams have arrived here due to the ESL World Ranking, eight of them divided by regions. In that light, large organizations such as Ninjas in Pyjamas, Team Spirit, Cloud9, Complexity Gaming, FURIA, MIBR, IHC Esports, and Greyhound Gaming appear.
Finally, OG, ENCE, BIG, Sprout, paiN Gaming, and Evil Geniuses were invited due to the world classification.
Regarding Teams with Russian Players
Last but not least, it is worth noting that Russian players can breathe a sigh of relief, as ESL said there is nothing preventing them from entering Poland and taking part in the upcoming CS:GO event from a legal standpoint. As a result, they will be able to enter the host country of IEM Katowice through other countries that are a part of the Schengen Area, like Germany.
But due to multiple restrictions, the visa process will likely be more expensive, the processing times longer and the submission of documents more demanding. Nevertheless, the entry of Russian players into Poland is crucial for many organizations, including Outsiders, Natus Vincere, Team Spirit, and Cloud9.