The European esports giants, Acend, have recently revealed they’ll be looking for a new trial in preparation for the VCT Last Chance Qualifier. At the same time, they announced the departure of a long-standing member of the team, Aleksander “zeek” Zygmunt. He’ll no longer be a part of the active roster, but will be warming the bench instead.
This move feels rushed and perhaps even miscalculated, but it’s something both Zeek and the organisation agreed upon. They have one last shot at making it to this year’s VCT Champions, so this will be their attempt at salvaging what was almost certainly a very mediocre Valorant Champions Tour season so far.
Acend in Dire Straits
Acend find themselves in a difficult situation right now. They’ve been offered a chance at redemption in the VCT EMEA Last Chance Qualifier, but whether they’ll be able to make good use of it is another story.
Their VCT 2021 Champions form is nowhere to be seen. The team that once conquered EMEA is no longer there, and there’s just two original roster members remaining – Mehmet Yağız “cNed” İpek and Patryk “starxo” Kopczyński. Zeek was the third, but he’s now out of the picture. With a severely weakened roster, and without a fifth member, Acend’s Valorant betting odds are looking slim at best.
Who they bring on board as a trial will probably be the deciding factor in the upcoming VCT EMEA LCQ. Cned and starxo will be bringing the big guns, but they’ll need some great support to fully come alive.
The Journey So Far
It’s no secret that Acend have been struggling in the past two VCT EMEA Challengers esports events. As the former VCT Champions, they were hailed as the main favourites in both tournaments, but ended up disappointing on both occasions.
The VCT Challengers 1 group stage was the first indication of Acend’s decline, where they were immediately eliminated in group B. Given they were facing heavy competition, it was easy to excuse their poor performance, but the final scores still reflected poorly on the organisation.
VCT Challengers 2 came and Acend were looking in better shape. They picked up two easy wins against OG LDN UTD and FOKUS, but were still struggling against the likes of Fnatic and FunPlus Phoenix. Despite finishing 2nd in group A, the team would end up facing two consecutive defeats in the Playoffs, leaving home empty-handed.
Since Acend failed to meet this season’s expectations in the two VCT EMEA Challengers tournaments, they also missed both Masters events, which negatively impacted them on the overall VCT Circuit Point standings. As of right now, Acend are currently occupying the middle of the list with just 105 points. Compare that to the 375 points from last year and you’ll see just how much things have changed for this squad.
Acend will have a tough time in VCT EMEA LCQ. The competition is so fierce that it’s really hard to stay optimistic in this case. This is the type of tournament where it’s all or nothing, and the winner takes it all. It doesn’t matter how far they come, if they don’t win, they’ve failed the mission.
Still, they can surprise us all and win the tournament, but it’s a bit of a stretch at this point. M3 Champions are probably the team that’s going to win here, so if your main goal is to find the best Valorant bets, that’s where your money should go.
In any case, this tournament will most likely make or break Acend as a team. They’ve got nothing left to lose, so expect them to come out swinging!