Counter Strike: Global Offensive

MSL: “I had some very good offers money-wise, but I didn’t feel that the lineups were strong enough”

It’s been two months since North left esports due to financial issues that were aggravated by the coronavirus pandemic. For Mathias “⁠MSL⁠” Lauridsen, the wait to return to action has been even longer, with the 26-year-old having spent the final four months of his contract on the bench.

The Danish in-game leader appeared on Monday as a guest on the ‘HLTV Confirmed’ podcast and discussed the issues during his second stint with North, in which he was unable to lead the team to silverware.

MSL said that the team didn’t play as a unit in his second North spell

“I wouldn’t use the online era as an excuse at all,” MSL admitted. “I think we had a lineup that wasn’t strong enough. That was pretty apparent to me and before I came back to North I knew that some changes needed to happen for us to reach our goal [of becoming a top five team in the world].

“I think I also made mistakes and I could have probably got more out of the team we had, but in the end, it just didn’t work out. I also felt that we were not a team but individuals trying to get good stats to avoid getting kicked. I also take some of the responsibility for that because I was the leader and I needed to change things like that fast, but I just didn’t. That’s one of the things that I will focus a lot on for my next team. To make my team feel like a team.”

Six months after MSL‘s last competitive game, every player in that North lineup seems to have moved on, except him. Jonas “⁠Lekr0⁠” Olofsson is currently plying his trade with Dignitas, while Philip “⁠aizy⁠” Aistrup and Nicklas “⁠gade⁠” Gade have put together a new squad alongside another ex-North player, Markus “⁠Kjaerbye⁠” Kjærbye. René “⁠cajunb⁠” Borg is rumored to be creating a new team with players like Kristoffer “⁠Kristou⁠” Aamand and Fredrik “⁠roeJ⁠” Jørgensen.

Curiously enough, the Danish skipper hasn’t taken part in any trials since leaving North. He has been playing pick-up games to stay in shape, some of which he streams on his Twitch channel. He is also trying to find new ways to push himself, joining Surf and KZ servers to improve his movement. But that doesn’t mean that he’s not eager to compete again.

“I feel like I’m ready to join a team now, I’d like that very much (laughs),” MSL said.

“At the beginning of the year, just when I had got out of North, I had some very good offers money-wise, but I didn’t feel that the lineups were strong enough, so I chose to wait, which is risky, but I did it because I don’t really feel that I need to hurry. I want the right project and I took a risk. We’ll see if it pays off.”

But MSL has set a timetable for his competitive return. He wants to find a new team by the next player break because he doesn’t feel that it’s good to be away from competition for more than seven or eight months. He’s open to all offers, including from international teams.

“I just want players that are very hungry and a lineup that is as good as possible,” MSL said. “In 2018, I got kicked after the FACEIT Major despite having just won Dreamhack Masters Stockholm, and I joined Rogue, so I’m not afraid of taking something smaller and putting in the work.”

You can access the full VOD of Monday’s episode of ‘HLTV Confirmed’ below.

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Counter Strike: Global Offensive

VINI on FURIA’s first tournament with junior: “To be honest, communication was quite good”

Vinicius “⁠VINI⁠” Figueiredo has shared his thoughts on how the adaptation to a new communication system is going following the signing of Paytyn “⁠junior⁠” Johnson from Triumph in January. The North American AWPer debuted for the team only in IEM Katowice, helping them to finish 7th-8th following victories over NIP and FaZe, and defeats to Natus Vincere and

Due to passport issues, junior joined up with the rest of the squad just days before the start of IEM Katowice, even though he had practised with the team from home for a while. But despite the less-than-ideal circumstances, VINI believes that the dynamic in the team in the $1 million competition was better than expected.

“To be honest, communication was quite good, we expected it to be a lot noisier and to miscommunicate some words,” VINI said. “It was mostly me, junior and arT doing the talking to make things easier for KSCERATO and yuurih. I think we are improving a lot, we are taking English lessons and it’s been good.”

VINI said FURIA are still working on their six-man roster

IEM Katowice was junior‘s biggest tournament to date, but he still managed to hold his own in most of the matches, averaging a 1.03 rating. Of the teams that he faced in the tournament, was the one that gave him the most trouble as he was caught off-guard by their playing style.

“I think I performed well against FaZe and NIP, but I struggled against, because their playing style was so weird and I had never faced them before,” junior revealed. “YEKINDAR and Jame were owning everybody, and it was very difficult to play against them.

“For the next tournaments, I have to know my spot and how we play on every map. I’m not going to lie, I was quite a bit confused about what we were doing in our matches on Overpass. I think these next weeks before ESL Pro League are definitely going to be good for us.”

The ESL Pro League Season 13 is slated to start on March 8. According to VINI, it’s unlikely that Lucas “⁠honda⁠” Cano, the team’s backup player, will see any action in the tournament as he is still getting experience and learning the ropes.

“This is up to guerri and arT, but I don’t think we are going to use honda in ESL Pro League right now,” VINI said. “It’s something we are still working on, he’s watching us in practice and learning every spot. I mean, if he’s ready one day before ESL Pro League starts, then sure, he can play.”

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