The European Masters is back with the first event of 2021 where the best teams from the European Regional Leagues will clash.
The regional leagues in Europe have been in full swing for the past few months and it’s now time for everything to culminate at EU Masters. Just as in previous EU Masters tournaments, the level of play is looking to be high with a lot of young and upcoming players getting their time in the spotlight. For the 2021 LEC season, several rookies were picked up from the ERL teams, giving room for new stars to shine in the 2021 EU Masters Spring with players from 29 different nationalities.
2021 Spring #EUMasters Players:
— European Masters (@EUMasters) March 24, 2021
With the tournament right around the corner, here is an overview of what is waiting.
A total of 28 teams will participate at the 2021 EU Masters Spring, with 16 of them having to go through the play-in stage. As always, EU Masters feels a bit like the World Championship as lower-seeded teams have the chance to make a miracle run through the play-in stage. This year, a lot of prominent teams will be placed in the play-ins, making it very exciting to follow the tournament right from the start.
Besides the play-in teams, are 12 teams who have qualified directly to the main event. These are the top two teams from the biggest four European Regional Leagues, including the first seed from the Nordics, Italy, Balkans, Greece, and Cyprus.
Here’s a look at all the participating teams and their respective European league.
Qualified for the main event:
Qualified for the play-in stage:
The groups for the play-in stage have already been drawn and all are looking to be close. Most noteworthy are group C and D, which are stacked with prominent teams from some of the best leagues in Europe. In group C, Vitality.Bee and Fnatic Rising will fight in what looks to be a great battle between two LEC Academy teams.
— European Masters (@EUMasters) March 25, 2021
The format of EU Masters reminds a lot of the World Championship format, where some teams will have to fight their way through the play-in stage before reaching the main event. With 12 teams qualified directly for the main event, 16 teams will fight for the remaining four spots.
With just four spots available to compete for, the competition will be tough in the play-ins. This stage has four groups with four teams in each, with the top two moving to the knockout stage after playing a double round-robin in a best-of-one format. The knockout stage will be four individual best-of-three matches, with the winner from each moving on in the tournament.
When entering the main event, it will be a similar format where teams are drawn into four groups, but this time depended on seeding. A group can’t have more than one team from the same region, which gives fans tons of cross-nation matchups to look forward to. The group stage is all best-of-one matches in a double round-robin. Again, the top two teams from each group will move on to the knockout stage.
The last knockout stage of the tournament is where the eight best teams will enter the final sprint for the trophy. It’s a single-elimination bracket consisting of best-of-three matches. The grand final will be best-of-five, so expect a banger.
The winner of the event will go home with €40,000 and a lot of glory.
The 2021 EU Masters Spring kicks off on March 29 with the play-in stage. The stage will run over just four days, so there will be plenty of action to catch. After the play-in stage concludes on April 1, the tournament will take a bit of a break before kicking off the main event. The main event will begin on April 14 and run all the way through May 2 when the grand final will be played.
The first day of the EU Masters is on March 29, when a whopping 24 games will take place.