IEM Cologne 2024 CS:GO Tournament Guide

IEM Cologne 2023 is undoubtedly one of the biggest Counter-Strike shooter tournaments, with 24 teams competing in either world rankings or qualifying tournaments and all the people worldwide placing Counter-Strike bets.

Intel Extreme Masters Cologne 2023 will take place from July 26th to August 6th in Cologne, Germany. The tournament has a prize pool of USD 1,000,000.

In addition, the winner of the tournament will receive a direct invitation to another prestigious CS:GO tournament – IEM Katowice 2024.

PlacePrize
1st Place400,000 USD
2nd Place180,000 USD
3rd/4th Places80,000 USD each

Tournament organizers ESL have told the organization that they are considering hosting the annual IEM Cologne 2023 championship on the soon-to-be-released Counter-Strike 2.

However, it was finally decided to extend the CS:GO era, at least for a short period of time, and the tournament will be held on this version of Counter-Strike, as it is unclear in what condition and with how many bugs the newly released enhanced version of CS:GO will be.

The transition of the legendary shooter from CS:GO to Counter Strike 2 is planned for the summer of 2023, but the developers have not yet announced an exact release date.

At the time of the announcement, the developers conducted a closed test with around 3% of professional CS:GO players.

FAQ
🔫 What is IEM Cologne?

IEM Cologne, or Intel Extreme Masters Cologne, is a premier esports tournament annually in Cologne, Germany. It is one of the longest-running esports events and has gained significant prestige in the esports community.

🔫 What is IEM Cologne 2023 date?

Cologne 2023 CSGO tournament will take place from July 26th to August 6th.

🔫 Where can I buy IEM Cologne 2023 tickets?

You can buy CS GO Cologne 2023 tickets on the tournaments official page.

🔫 How many teams participate in IEM Cologne 2023?

A total of 24 teams participate in Intel Cologne CSGO 2023.

🔫 Who won the CS:GO Major 2023?

Team Vitality won BLAST.tv Paris Major 2023.

Only one map is available for the Counter-Strike 2 demo, Dust2. So far, only elite CS:GO players or the developers of the CS:GO account are invited to try out the demo.

The tournament in Cologne will be the first tier-1 tournament after the summer break in the CS:GO pro scene, so it might be time to try your luck and bet on eSports.

Table of content

Tournament Stages

IEM Cologne CSGO tournament consists of 2 rounds – the Play-In and the Main Event. The Play-in consists of 16 teams and is based on their world ranking and qualifying tournament wins.

From this section, 8 teams will qualify for the Main Stage. The Play-in stage will take place from 26 to 28 July.

The 8 highest ranked teams in the world rankings qualify immediately for the main stage of the tournament, dominated by the European region. CSGO IEM Cologne 2023 Main Event will take place immediately after the Play-In from 29 July to 6 August.

Play-in is dominated by teams from the European region:

Team (Region)Global RankingPlayer (Country)
APEKS (Europe)9STYKO (Slovakia), jkaem (Norway), nawwk (Sweden), CacaNito (Macedonia), kyxsan (Macedonia).
MOUZ (Europe)11frozen (Slovakia), siuhy (Poland), torzsi (Hungary), xertioN (Israel), Jimpphat (Finland).
Monte (Europe)12sdy (Ukraine), Woro2k (Ukraine), DemQQ (Ukraine), KraSnaL (Poland), br0 (Denmark).
Ninjas in Pyjamas (Europe)15k0nfig (Denmark), hampus (Sweden), REZ (Sweden), headtr1ck (Ukraine), Brollan (Sweden).
Fnatic (Europe)16KRIMZ (Sweden), afro (France), mezii (UK), roeJ (Denmark), dexter (Australia).
Astralis (Europe)17device (Denmark), Buzz (Denmark), Staehr (Denmark), b0RUP (Denmark), blameF (Denmark).
Into the Breach (Europe)21rallen (Poland), Thomas (UK), CRUC1AL (Netherlands), NEOFRAG (Czech Republic), Bymas (Lithuania).
OG (Europe)N/Anexa (Serbia), regali (Romania), FASHR (Netherlands), k1to (Germany), F1KU (Poland).
BIG (Europe)50S3NSEY (Austria), tabseN (Germany), prosus (Germany), Krimbo (Germany), s1n.
9INE (Europe)24mynio (Poland), Goofy (Poland), hades (Poland), KEi (Poland), Kylar (Poland).
Team Liquid (North America)10NAF (Canada), oSee (USA), YEKINDAR (Latvia), Rainwaker (Bulgaria), Patsi (Russia).
FURIA (North America)13FalleN (Brazil), chelo (Brazil), arT (Brazil), yuurih (Brazil), KSCERATO (Brazil).
Imperial (North America)18HEN1 (Brazil), boltz (Brazil), VINI (Brazil), felps (Brazil), IOTA (Brazil).
Complexity (North America)22EliGE (USA), JT (South Africa), floppy (USA), hallzerk (Norway), Grim (USA).
Grayhound (Asia)24Sico (Australia), Liazz (Australia), aliStair (Australia), INS (Australia), Vexite (Australia).
TheMongolz (Asia)29hasteka (Mongolia), bLitz (Mongolia), Techno (Mongolia), mzinho (Mongolia), 910 (Mongolia).

Teams that qualify directly for the main stage:

Team (Region)Global RankingPlayer (Country)
Heroic (Europe)1CadiaN (Denmark), TeSeS (Denmark), stavn (Denmark), jabbi (Denmark), sjuush (Denmark).
Team Vitality (Europe)2apEX (France), ZywOo (France), Magisk (Denmark), flameZ (Israel), Spinx (Israel).
FaZe Clan3Karrigan (Denmark), rain (Norway), Twistzz (Canada), ropz (Estonia), broky (Latvia)
G2 Esports4NiKo (Bosnia and Herzegovina), m0NESY (Russia), huNter- (Bosnia and Herzegovina), jks (Australia), HooXi (Denmark).
ENCE (Europe)5Snappi (Denmark), NertZ (Israel), Maden (Montenegro), dycha (Poland), SunPayus (Spain).
Cloud9 (Europe)6HObbit (Kazakhstan), sh1ro (Russia), Ax1Le (Russia), electroNic (Non-representing), Perfecto (Non-representing).
GamerLegion (Europe)7Keoz (Belgium), acoR (Denmark), isak (Sweden), TBA, TBA.
Natus Vincere (Europe)N/As1mple (Ukraine), b1t (Ukraine), jL (Lithuania), IM (Romania), Aleksib (Finland).

Tournament Favorites

In the first tournaments after the summer break, teams that have made fewer line-up changes and performed well in the last tournaments before the break may have an advantage.

Communication is one of the most important pieces of the puzzle for a successful team, as every second counts in CS:GO, so teams that have maintained their core will not have to polish this important aspect.

It is also important to have the widest and most well-crafted map menu possible, which again requires a significant investment of time, which the new line-ups will have little of.

FURIA and MOUZ are the favorites to qualify for the main stage of the Play-In phase.

FURIA

Although it has long been established as the strongest Brazilian team, it has not been able to win trophies on the international stage, so it decided to make 2 changes, which can be said to have brought together the Brazilian dream team.

intel-extreme-masters-cologne-2023

FalleN, the true godfather of Brazilian CS:GO, is in its twilight years, but has been given the chance to play in a top level team, possibly for the last time in its career.

Another newcomer, chelo, is a very strong individual player and is increasingly establishing himself as one of Brazil's best players.

The changes, at first glance, have really strengthened the team and we can finally hope for a trophy, but this still needs to be proven on the server.

MOUZ

The German club has decided to make some serious changes after a turbulent season. The team has left the in-game leader dexter and JDC.

MOUZ definitely has one of the strongest, if not the strongest, CS:GO youth academy and continues its tradition of inviting youngsters from the academy to the main team.

Polish player siuhy still doesn't have a lot of experience at tier-1 level, but his impressive performance as a playmaker for GamerLegion didn't leave anyone indifferent, and after a powerful performance at the Paris Major, he was immediately invited into the MOUZ main roster, and it was from the Academy that he was loaned out to GameLegion.

csgo-iem-cologne-2023

The other newcomer, Jimpphat, also came from the MOUZ youth team where he recorded excellent results, but the Finn is only 16 years old, so it's hard to predict how the transition to the top level will go.

There are a lot of changes in the team, so it will take some time to polish the team game, but the talented MOUZ should definitely be in the top 10 of the rankings.

The players have made 2 changes each, but individually they have strengthened the teams considerably and it will all depend on whether there is enough time to integrate the new players.

It is also worth mentioning Astralis and Team Liquid, which have top level stars, but the adjustments in the line-up raise a lot of unanswered questions.

Astralis

The most titled CS:GO organization has not escaped major changes either, as it continues to struggle to return to the golden days, but it remains on the trajectory that only local players should play in the Danish organization.

intel-iem-cologne-csgo

While the addition of Staehr was not surprising, as he is one of the most talented players in Denmark, the addition of b0RUP came as a big surprise to the CS:GO community, as the latter does not even stay in teams of a much lower level.

Anyway, when you have stars like device and blameF on your team, you can always count on Astralis to fight for trophies.

Team Liquid

The US organization has made 2 changes to the line-up, but the changes were quite surprising. If Patsi is a capable player in the entry role, the appointment of Rainwaker to the responsible role of a riffler is a very risky move.

The Bulgarian has never tried anything like this in his career and has mostly played for local teams, so it will be interesting to see how it goes to make such a big step forward.

cologne-2023-csgo

Overall, the favorites of the tournament are definitely the leaders of the rankings – Heroic and Vitality.

Both teams looked the strongest before the summer break and Heroic kept the whole core, while Vitality only made 1 change, which should not weaken the team, but maybe even raise its strength.

Heroic

The Danish CS:GO organisation has not only taken over the title of Denmark's strongest team from Astralis, but has also broken into the No.1 position in the world rankings. This success has led to a decision to keep the roster unchanged.

Team Vitality

Team Vitality did not rest on their laurels after winning the Paris Major title, replacing the most titled Major player, Dupreeh (Denmark), with flameZ.

cs-go-cologne-2023

The only reason for this is speculated to be that Dupreeh's hunger for the game may be diminishing after having recently had a new family, so having already won everything in his career, such news may make him less hungry to invest so much time in the game.

Anyway, flameZ is one of the most talented youngsters and it is only the lack of experience in an organisation of this level that can put a damper on things.

ENCE

Ence can be considered the dark horse of the tournament, having won IEM Dallas 2023 just before the summer break. With the core of the line-up intact, there is no reason why they can't do something similar again, or at least go far in the playoffs at CSGO Cologne 2023.

Natus Vincere

The biggest sensation of the off-season transfer window was Natus Vincere, who not only made 3 roster changes, but also some completely unexpected newcomers, including the Lithuanian jL.

Both IM and jL had very successful performances in the most prestigious tournament of the year – BLAST Paris Major, which drew the attention of a CS:GO giant like NaVi.

No less surprising was the acquisition of the experienced in-game leader Aleksib from NiP. The Finn hasn't been a fixture in top-level teams for a long time now, although he's getting more opportunities, so the call from NaVi was a real surprise.

There is a lot of uncertainty in this NaVi revolution, if only for the fact that this Ukrainian e-sports organization has for the first time assembled an international CS:GO team.

csgo-cologne

As a consequence, it is no coincidence that the main problem of the new NaVi era is expected to be communication, as both Ukrainians – s1mple and b1t – are not good communicators in English.

Anyway, the individual skill of NaVi's players is elite, let alone with the best player in the world – s1mple – in their ranks, so if they can manage to polish their game a bit, the Ukrainian team can go far.

Betting Companies

The most attractive betting companies with the largest CS:GO offering are 22Bet and Cyber.bet. Here you will find a wide range of handicap offers, a variety of round totals, as well as the option of stacked bets – who will win the map + more/less round totals.

In addition, these companies also offer bets related to individual player performances – how many kills a player will get, whether they will die in a match overall or on an individual map. All of these bets are available both before the match and during the live match.

Aleksandras Rusinovas

Sports Betting & eSports Expert

Aleksas was a professional poker player who played in many European Poker Tour tournaments throughout his 15-year career. He has achieved great success in online poker, as well as reaching the final table and cashing 20 times at the prestigious World Series Of Poker event. Aleksas has always been interested in sports betting. He has a strong i ..
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