In esports' history, there were enough examples when football clubs assembled esports teams for themselves. Most of these were endemic games like FIFA, PES or Rocket League (a variation of football in which cars roll around the field), but sometimes clubs expand to other titles. The most popular is League of Legends; the second most popular is CS:GO.
Here we go with 11 examples of FC entries to CS:GO.
11 clubs – 11 stories. Of course, we can recall the cooperation of forZe with FC Spartak or other examples when a large organization and FC collaborate for a joint merchandise line (such as FaZe Clan and Manchester City), but this is not about it. All the cases, which will be discussed below, are the stories when the FC deliberately entered the game with the roster.
Since there are only 11 clubs and only two regions in this article, it would be wise to divide it by region.
The Brazilian division of football club Santos is the main centenarian in CS:GO. They signed their first squad back in 2015, and then it was called Santos Dexterity. Initially, the club only sponsored the Dexterity team, but the division closed in 2016. Apparently, the reason was the unsatisfactory results of the club - they could not gain a foothold in the top of the Brazilian CS and the reluctance to continue to finance the project.
The second attempt was made by the club in 2018. In addition to the CS squad they took on the LoL and R6 lineups. Now the club is much more likely to win local tournaments and soon can fully start the fight for the Brazilian top.
Santos has never had any stars in the squad, but you know at least one player from their old squads. In the second half of 2018, a former Tempo Storm/Immortals and Luminosity SHOOWTiME played for the club for a month.
River Plate Gaming
The Argentine club River Plate entered CS:GO relatively recently - in July 2020. They are not new to esports: like most other clubs, they have a League of Legends roster. River Plate's main goal was to create a strong Argentine team, and that is why they turned to the local scene when creating the roster.
Unfortunately, all the best players either play for clubs that they do not want to leave, or they sit on the bench, but they are expensive.
Boca Juniors Gaming
Once River Plate entered the discipline, it was only a matter of time before Boca Juniors appeared in CS:GO. The Argentine classic rivalry has grown into two esports disciplines in addition to football and other sports after Boca announced its desire to assemble LoL and CS:GO teams.
As in the case of River Plate, the lineup of Boca has no stars. But there is one player from the CIS! For quite a long time, Kazakh laser has been living in Argentina and playing for local teams. After changing a few not-so-famous tags, he ended up on one of the biggest soccer teams in South America.
Club Brugge Esports
Belgian club Brugge is the new name in the CS:GO scene. They assembled their lineup in the discipline only in early February of this year, signing the MAESTRO mix. It consists of three Belgian players and two Poles, who became the new players of the roster. This is the second discipline for the club - the first was FIFA.
The current CS:GO lineup has been playing together since November last year – as soon as the Dutch-Belgian LowLandLions team collapsed. As in the case of South American teams, there are no stars playing for the team, but there are well-known players of competitive scene.
Cream Real Betis
The organization's strange name is the result of the Cream eSports and Real Betis FC merger in May 2020. Cream previously focused on supporting Spanish and Latin American squads (a common practice among Spanish clubs), but after the merger with FC was able to afford to expand to the European squad.
In 2021, the club decided to leave CS:GO. The reason, as in the case of the first departure of Santos, is the same – unsatisfying results. Despite the fact that the club was one of the partners of the local tournament One Tap League, Cream Real Betis is now engaged in the development of other disciplines. However, in their announcement of plans for this year, they noted that they are ready to return and are looking into the situation to choose the best moment.
Wisla decided to enter esports in 2019. Many would really envy it with the way Wisla entered - among the owners of the team there is even Jakub Blaszczykowski, who is finishing his career at this club.
Polish FC signed its first CS:GO squad in October 2019. In Poland, there was always a choice of good squads that could compete on an equal footing with strong European teams. Wisla drew attention to the adwokacik mix, which included 3 players from the Polish Virtus.Pro - byali, TOAO and morelz. Before signing the contract with Wisla, only one morelz remained in the roster. But he also left the club in early 2020.
Nordavind appeared on the scene in February 2018, when the organization BX3 eSports Club rebranded. At the same time, it had two fairly powerful partners - the Norwegian bank DNB (the team often plays under the tag Nordavind DNB in tournaments) and the football club Vålerenga. The reorganization of the team was aimed at creating a strong Norwegian squad that could perform at a high level in Europe. In 2019, their attempts at this even had some success - they were able to assemble a good line-up, even without the two main stars of the scene - rain and jkaem.
But due to the lack of progress, as well as due to the fact that the best players of the team moved to larger clubs, the organization was forced to assemble European squads. However, they did not deviate from their strategy and in fact only increased their support from Norway to the whole of Scandinavia.
Though they signed HS from Estonia, and mirbit from Germany.
The new rostera already met FaZe Clan at the SteelSeries Invitational, but could not defeat them in bo1. However, the five have prospects to take their strong place in tier-2.
The organization Team LDLC is one of the old-timers of the French scene, but at the beginning of 2020 it underwent a rebranding, merging with the football club Olympique Lyonnais, or, simply put, Lyon. The new collaboration forced the move of the organization's headquarters to Lyon, as well as putting the name of the FC in its name. This is due not least to the basketball player William Anthony (Tony) Parker, who wants to integrate the club (which will soon be his whole) into esports.
LDLC has always assembled French teams in its history, and in general, the situation has not changed even after the rebranding. However, these lineups have long been performing poorly - after winning the major in 2014, the organization's lineups were far from the strongest. There were some hopes for the line-up in 2018, but then Vitality bought ALEX from LDLC and the five broke up. The LDLC had a new squad the following year, and by the time of the rebranding, it had changed five players. Four more have changed in the last year.
The current results of LDLC OL leave much to be desired - the team is consistently the best in France (given that Vitality do not play in the ESL national league, and the Heretics squad, which was a head stronger, is no longer there), but in Europe it is seriously feverish. Although, perhaps, with the arrival of Keoz from K23 and Maka, everything will change for the better.
Lyngby Vikings, AGF Esport, North
All three teams are (or were) owned by clubs from the Danish Superliga. And if the clubs Lyngby Boldklub and Aarhus still live and keep the squads, then the sponsored FC Copenhagen North at the end of last week announced its departure from esports.
Each organization had its own approach to the team. Lyngby and AGF initially did not count on the top level. They came to CS:GO in 2018 and have taken a line-up of promising players from the scene. In the future, some of the talent went to other clubs, and the clubs began to recruit more experienced players. So, in Lyngby Vikings, NaToSaphiX is currently playing, and AGF has PERCY, who recently left Team Secret.
North was founded back in 2017, and the main goal was to create a top Danish team. For 4 years, many strong players have passed through North, but in the end, a strong team did not work out. Yes, the club had local successes and even victories in major championships, but in the end, the club hung somewhere between the first and second floor of the competitive scene. At the end of its life, the organization tried to play with the Swedes, but on February 5, FC Copenhagen announced that they and Nordisk Film would no longer keep a CS:GO roster. The main reasons were financial problems, the reluctance of new investors to enter the game, and the desire of the founders to go about their business.
Author: a2wai, original source in Russian