The Question Mark that is North
North, the second best team from Denmark, one of the top 10 teams in Counter-Strike at the moment, have been disappointing considering all of the good pieces they have obtained. With a duo like Emil “Magisk” Reif and Kristian “k0nfig” Wienecke and one of the most skilled supporting casts in all of Counter-Strike, we expect greatness from North. North has yet to even make a notable final since their win at Epicenter Moscow over seven months ago. Not to mention that win came with former member Ruben “RUBINO” Villarroel. I’ll be diving headfirst into the two key problems within North, and possible fixes to these issues.
When I look at this North team, I see a team that, especially on T side, should be running a run and gun, five rifle style. A style sort of reminiscent of the LDLC lineup with Richard “shox” Papillion. On Cobblestone, North’s best map, Mathias “MSL” Lauridsen, the team’s leader, runs this style. As for the style on other maps, however, he has different ideas, as René “cajunb” Borg is frequently on the AWP.
On their CT sides, they frequently choose to run the double AWP, even on maps like Cobble, where you don’t even necessarily need one AWP. When you aren’t running a T side around having an AWP, you can be much more aggressive when buying, leading to force buy wins with weapons in desperate need of a nerf like the UMP, Tec-9, and P250. If MSL wants to stick to running an AWP, one of their aggressive riflers will either have to step down or be removed from the team.
The real problem has not been In-game Leader MSL’s T sides. The struggles this team has encountered have been on the Counter-Terrorist side. Most of their defensive woes all flow from one key detail; the loss of RUBINO. Without someone who can play the tricky spots on maps, such as solo A site on Cache or the connector/stairs on Mirage, their CT sides suffer immensely. Time would most likely be a fix to this; although, the signs of improvement aren’t showing after multiple months. As a result, I think the only option they would have would be to bring in a new player.
In need of a Hero
While my last two points have suggested this North don’t necessarily need to make a change in players, the current lineup has massive potential. Should they need to change for any interpersonal issues, or if they get impatient with these okay, but not stellar results, people they could likely grab include Andreas “MODDII” Fridh, Valdemor “valde” Bjørn Vangså from Heroic, or they could bring up a player from the North Academy team. The best move at the current time would have to be to grab MODDII, as he plays this passive and supportive style that I think would fit very well into a team packed with entry power. Another key detail is he can play the very tricky spots on maps and can be integral to a defense that could use some bolstering. He would also bring some veteran savvy to an extremely young team.
To the North
The Danish powerhouse is stuck in the most competitive era in CS:GO history, which has pushed them out of the top 5 world rankings. Still, North have a bright future under MSL. He is a brilliant leader who is capable of bringing out the best in most of the players he plays with. While they might not be reaching the heights that they want at the moment, they maintain a high floor and have a sky-high ceiling going for them. North still have a lot to prove going forward, we’ll see if they can start to make big finals and win out the huge LANs like we expect them to.