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CS:GO fans demand ESL to move IEM Rio Major playoffs to soccer stadium

Stock Photo, tags: iem rio - upload.wikimedia.org

The COVID-19 pandemic has forced many esports events to be conducted online, with several being canceled. As the 2022 PGL Major Antwerp has concluded with FaZe Clan defeating Natus Vincere, the upcoming 2022 IEM Rio Major recently began selling tickets, perhaps with a little too much enthusiasm.

According to multiple reports, ESL and Valve recently started selling tickets for the Major in Rio, with their servers crashing after a significant number of fans flocked in to purchase. Fans, however, have raised concerns regarding the venue size for the playoffs at Jeunesse Arena.

With less than 20,000 maximum capability that Jeunesse Arena can offer for Brazil’s CS:GO fans, the community came out with a clever yet bonkers idea, which is to move the playoffs venue to one of the country’s most iconic soccer stadiums, Maracanã.

Fans demand ESL to move Rio Major to soccer stadium

The idea itself is not controversial. The Jeunesse Arena has a limited maximum capability of 18,000. Adding to that, both fans and players argued that the problems of purchasing tickets for the Rio Major had demonstrated the tournament likely needed to have a bigger venue to accommodate the game’s enthusiasts attending the event offline.

Looking back, professional CS:GO tournaments accumulated hundreds of thousands of viewers, both online and offline.

Brazil’s CS:GO fans are adamant that moving the Major to Maracanã soccer stadium or any other stadium alike is the best move ESL can resort to. However, particularly for Maracanã, the stadium is located in Rio de Janeiro, a seaside city famous for its countless tourist attraction spots.

Moving the Major to a soccer stadium would simply allow more fans to watch the tournament from the inside. However, it does come with a few notable shortcomings. First and foremost, it is extremely unlikely that ESL will be able to secure the stadium for the Major’s final days on November 10-13 since the soccer stadium reportedly has been reserved for quite a number of games.

Lastly, the majority of soccer stadiums in Brazil do not have roofs to protect fans, players, and equipment from bad weather. Moreover, at the time of writing, both ESL and Valve have yet to provide any statement regarding the slightly bizarre request.

CS:GO professionals have shown support for the idea to move the playoffs venue. NAVI sniper Alexander “s1mple” Kostyleva recently expressed his support for fans wanting to change the venue for the Major’s playoffs.

“Major in the football stadium or I don’t go,” s1mple tweeted.

Imperial Esports Gabriel “FalleN” Toledo also voiced the same concerns as s1mple. However, both were not as straightforward as FURIA Esports’ Kaike “KSCERATO” Cerato, who specifically said that Maracanã stadium was the appropriate position for the Major’s playoffs.

Regardless of the outcome, fans still demonstrated huge interest to attend the event. ESL announced on Twitter that the Major’s tickets were sold out within an hour.