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IEM Katowice 2023 confirms all participating teams

Intel Extreme Masters (IEM) Katowice 2023 has officially confirmed the names of all 24 of the world’s top teams to compete in the tournament. IEM Katowice 2023 begins on January 31 and ends on February 12, 2023, in Katowice, Poland, with a staggering $1,000,000 prize pool.

The invited teams are FaZe Clan, Team Vitality, Outsiders, Heroic, Team Liquid, MOUZ, G2 Esports and Natus Vincere. The Play-in stage teams will feature Ninjas in Pyjamas, Sprout, BIG, ENCE, OG, FURIA, MIBR, Cloud9, Team Spirit, Complexity, Grayhound, Evil Geniuses, paiN Gaming, Fnatic, Permitta Esports and IHC Esports.

“It’s always an honor to invite fans back to two [EM Katowice and IEM Cologne] of the most recognizable esports events worldwide,” ESL Senior Product Manager Shaun “Apollo” Clark said in September.

“We are already bubbling with excitement as we begin the annual planning to host two of the most passionate esports events.”

IEM Katowice has established itself as one of the most esteemed Counter-Strike events and an Intel Grand Slam qualifier. The event will be held at the Spodek Arena, which, since 2013, has witnessed many esports events. It also hosted several CS:GO Majors, the first of which was ESL One: Katowice 2014, almost nine years ago.

Three teams have already been invited to the tournament. They are IEM Cologne winners FaZe, ESL Pro League Season 16 and Outsiders champions Vitality, and Outsiders, who triumphed conquered IEM Rio Major.

Most Play-In spots were also selected based on ESL rankings. The two exceptions were Fnatic, who won the Elisa Masters Espoo, and Permitta, who won the ESL Polish Championship Autumn 2022.

The next tournament, like the one in 2022, will be divided into a group stage and a play-in stage. They will be divided into a double-elimination bracket, with the first matches being a best-of-one format and the next being best-of-three. After the play-in, the top eight will advance to the Group Stage. There will be two GSL Groups of eight teams each, with the top three teams going to the Playoffs.

The top two teams advance to the Semifinals, the runners-up to the Quarterfinals as the High Seed, and the third to the Quarterfinals as the Low Seed. They will compete in a single-elimination bracket in the Playoffs.

The winner will receive $400,000 and an invitation to IEM Cologne 2023, which will be held for the seventh time at the Counter-Strike LANXESS Arena from July 25, 2023, to August 6, 2023.

Russian players to compete in IEM Katowice

Outsiders, Cloud9 and Natus Vincere should be relieved that their Russian players will be able to compete in IEM Katowice 2023 despite strict travel restrictions.

“As of now, there is no local law indicating that any given team or player cannot enter the premises of Poland and, therefore, not participate in the upcoming tournament in Katowice,” ESL said in a statement.

Previously in September, Poland and three other Baltic countries, Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, enacted a ban on Russian citizens with EU visas. However, according to HLTV, Russian citizens can enter Poland through other Schengen Area countries, which includes Germany.