Three reasons why Falcons missed the Copenhagen CS2 Major

While wealth may bring talent, it doesn’t necessarily deliver victories.

The CS2 community was buzzing with anticipation when Falcons hinted at their new heavyweight lineup towards the end of 2023, promising a stellar team bound for the Copenhagen Major. However, despite delivering on the first promise, they fell short on the latter. Falcons were knocked out from the Copenhagen Major European RMR A due to unforeseen defeats to teams deemed weaker than them.

Supporters are quick to attribute the failures to unlucky bracketing, harsh seeding, or other excuses. But examining the games reveals three key areas that the team needs to improve to live up to their hyped status.

Falcons’ no-show at Copenhagen CS2 Major

Image Courtesy: Falcons CS2

Doubts in map selection

At first sight, Falcons display a well-balanced map pool. The team plays every map except Inferno, which is its standard ban. They have a decent track record on Mirage, Vertigo, Nuke, and Overpass in the past six months. A broad map pool should provide an upper hand in single-elimination matches. Unfortunately, when trying to secure a place in Copenhagen, Falcons’ selection abilities froze.

During its game against FaZe Clan, Falcons perplexingly decided to veto Mirage, forcing a replay on Nuke, neglecting the only map it had a higher win rate than FaZe. Versus Eternal Fire, Falcons again chose Nuke when they could have played on Vertigo. Notably, the only map they won in the RMR post-3DMAX was Vertigo against AMKAL. Despite having a robust map pool, their advantage is undermined by repetitive choices.

Consistent loss of control in crunch time

One key trait of any star team is experience. The five players from Falcons are not just valued for their current position. Their speculated $40,000 monthly checks can be attributed to their vast exposure to high-rank contests, which is surprising considering the team’s frequent losses in rounds that should have been secure. In the deciding match against AMKAL, Falcons lost five 1-vs-X situations.

These setsbacks were both from individual rounds and entire matches. The team’s entire Copenhagen RMR run consisted of almost a dozen round slip-ups. The most disappointing was when Helvijs “broky” Saukants with a Galil, managed a 2-vs-5, which should have been a clear win for Falcons. The blame could be on the lack of firepower, the leadership within the game, or a combination of both. Regardless, Emil “Magisk” Reif and Marco “Snappi” Pfeiffer have been unable to replicate the smooth finishes their previous teams were known for.

Lacking prowess to focus on CT

A proficient CT side can elevate a team to the top, but Falcons aren’t G2. Across the six matches in its RMR run, Falcons scored a total of 28 T rounds out of a possible 78. The poorest T-side performance was during the AMKAL series, where they secured a total of 13 T rounds across three maps. One of these was in overtime in Mirage, before it eventually bowed out with a loss of 16-13.

Teams with a specialized side will always have their place in the metagame, but Falcons’ CT side at the Copenhagen CS2 Major seems lacking to justify a T-side win rate of 35.90 Percent. The team’s only real defensive success has been on Mirage with a CT win rate of 65.6 percent in 2024. On Overpass, the most CT-sided map statistically, it stands at 45.8 percent. Their Nuke CT win rate is just 3.6 percent above the average, hardly a reason to opt for it in three consecutive single-elimination tournaments.

Is Falcons’ high-priced CS2 squad’s future bright?

Do not anticipate Nathan “NBK-” Schmitt getting off the reserve list soon.

Although it’s tempting to criticize the team for its recent failures, Falcons have some positives as well. Magisk continues to be a formidable entry, and Alvaro “SunPayus” Garcia is one of the most effective AWPers in terms of getting the pivotal opening kills. It could be due to initial teaming difficulties, RMR anxiety, or the nebulous concept of “team culture.” But once their competitors return from Denmark, Falcons will remain a significant threat.

In other esports news, Falcons’ Rocket League division successfully reached the RLCS Copenhagen Major, although they fell short in CS2. Such is the unpredictable nature of the esports world.

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