Team Liquid Barely made it against Movistar Riders
Liquid have scored themselves a win in their opening match of ESL Pro League Season 16, scraping together a win against Movistar Riders in a series that ended up much closer than expected. A comeback was required from Liquid to take their pick of Mirage, which they secured 16-13, but a 16-14 win from Movistar Riders on Inferno ended up forcing a third map which Liquid narrowly took over the line, 16-13.
The North American side had to contend with a red-hot performance out of the gates from Antonio “Martinez” Martinez on Mirage, who impressed in his first showing against top tier opposition under the Riders banner. Still, the Spanish team were unable to step up alongside their newcomer and ultimately conceded a massive lead on Mirage, but managed to recover by edging out a win on Inferno before faltering against a blistering performance from EliGE on Vertigo.
Liquid will be happy to come away with a win in their opening series, although the narrow fashion in which they claimed victory will be something to look back on when reviewing the tapes in preparation for their upcoming matches. Unfortunately for Liquid, they really needed to start strong to show that their ramping up hasn’t slowed down just yet.
FURIA Struggled against Eternal Fire
FURIA began the tournament with a 2-1 victory over Eternal Fire, taking Nuke 16-11, dropping Vertigo 17-19, and then cruising to a 16-5 win on Inferno. Just like Team Liquid, the Brazilians may very well have been hoping for a more convincing win over a team they outrank by 12 places, as even the first half of Inferno could have been closer than the 10-5 score line they secured.
Eternal Fire’s pick of Nuke opened the series, with the Turkish squad starting on the T side. They got off to a strong start by winning the pistol and converting to a 3-0 lead, but FURIA answered back when the guns came back up and climbed to a 6-4 lead, with André “drop” Abreu contributing an impressive 3k upper hold in the process.
FURIA began their T side on the front foot with a fast-paced offense netting them four rounds on the bounce. Rafael “saffee” Costa produced a vital 3k with a hero AWP to redeem his poor start to the game and wrestle a round back for the Brazilians, and although a Engin “MAJ3R” Küpeli 3k won a round immediately after for his side, FURIA took control of the game and marched imperiously to a 16-11 victory.
On the second map, it seemed FURIA had run out of steam come OT as they looked far less potent than they had during regulation, allowing Eternal Fire to grab a 19-17 win to force Inferno. But the Brazilians were not going to give up easily. The start of Inferno was a brawl with force-buys traded back and forth after FURIA won the pistol, although it was Eternal Fire who eventually came out on top, breaking the Brazilian’s economy and taking a 4-3 lead.
Despite several rounds coming close as the half wore on, Eternal Fire couldn’t clinch them, allowing their Brazilian counterparts to take a comfortable 10-5 half. Eternal Fire put up no resistance on their defense, losing the pistol and crumbling to a disappointing 5-16 defeat to lose the series.
Team Liquid vs FURIA Match Information
- Date: Friday, September 23
- Time: 1:30pm ET
- Team Liquid vs FURIA Live Stream: Twitch.tv
Team Liquid vs FURIA Prediction
It’s hard to judge both teams as they haven’t had a stellar performance so far in the tournament. Said that, I still think that Team Liquid has the upper hand in this matchup, especially if we consider that they’ve been ramping up throughout the past couple of months, and they don’t seem to be slowing down.
FURIA struggling against Eternal Fire the way they did revealed a lot about them as a team. This is something that EliGe and co. will be able to exploit, giving them a convincing victory, which might end up being enough to overcome both FURIA and Cloud9 in the group D standings.
There are still plenty of games left to be played in this tournament, so make sure to check out the rest of our esports picks. Also, don’t forget to bet on esports at BetUS Sportsbook & Casino. We’ve plenty of CSGO odds for you to consider.