ESL has confirmed the 24 CS:GO teams that will participate in Pro League season 11 today. Thirteen of these teams have signed long-term deals with ESL and can’t be relegated.
Astralis, Complexity, ENCE, Evil Geniuses, FaZe Clan, Fnatic, G2, mousesports, Natus Vincere, Ninjas in Pyjamas, Team Liquid, Vitality, and 100 Thieves are the 13 teams that signed the “Louvre agreement,” formerly known as “LANXESS agreement.” They’re now the league’s majority stakeholders.
Heroic, North, Renegades, Sharks, and TYLOO earned a spot because they played in the season 10 finals. FURIA, GODSENT, OG, and Virtus Pro qualified through ESL world rankings, while forZe and BOOM came through ESEA MDL.
Other than being protected from relegation, the 13 partnered teams will receive direct invitations for each season of EPL and there will be a number of spots reserved for these teams at ESL Pro Tour tournaments, the circuit created by ESL and DreamHack in 2020.
The league will kick off on March 16 and the 24 teams will compete over a span of four weeks. The season will be fully played in a live studio and three-day finals will be played in an arena. There won’t be any ESL Pro Tour tournaments while EPL is taking place.
The 24 teams will be split into four groups of six teams and play a round-robin best-of-three group stage. Group winners will play for a direct slot to the semifinals and round three, respectively. The second and third-placed team from each group will be seeded into a single-elimination bracket to meet with group winners. All matches from round three and beyond will be played in an arena, where the finalists will play a best-of-five grand final.
ESL Pro League season 11 will offer a $750,000 prize pool. ESL has made radical changes to the format, which was first played regionally and contained 48 teams. The teams that were cut in the process have been relegated to ESEA MDL and can also qualify for the next season of EPL through a regional qualifier for Europe, North America, South America, Asia, and Oceania.