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FACEIT’s Esports Championship Series (ECS) is doing a complete makeover to the qualification format for ECS Season 5. They have eliminated the ECS Development League and are introducing the new ECS Challenger Cup.

The previous seasons saw teams earning places in ECS through the ECS Development League which used a relegation type system similar to that of the Premier League. However, with so many leagues, tournaments, and events in CS:GO, ECS changed the qualification process to allow more teams to participate.

The new ECS Challenger Cup will introduce a condensed schedule, allowing teams to earn a place in the league in less time than the previous model. Teams can qualifier for the Challenger Cup by qualifying in the upcoming ECS Open Qualifiers beginning January 27 in Europe and North America.

Europe will see several Regional Qualifiers in CIS/Russia, North EU, West/Central EU, and South/East EU, to go alongside many Open Qualifiers. 16 teams will compete from February 11-13, 2018 in the Closed Qualifiers. The top four winners of the Closed Qualifiers will go into the Challenger Cup, where they will be joined by two invited teams and two relegated teams in a best of three double elimination bracket. The top two after the end of the Challenger Cup will progress into ECS Season 5.

The system in North America will be similar, but without regional qualifiers. NA will see four Open Qualifiers, with the top four of each qualifier entering the Closed Qualifier. The top four winners of the NA Closed Qualifiers will then enter the Challenger Cup along with two invited and two relegated teams. The two winners will move forward to compete in ECS Season 5.

Dates for both the European and North American Qualifiers are below:

EU Open Qualifiers (Regional)

CIS/Russia Qualifier: January 27, 2018 (2 qualifying slots)

North EU Qualifier: January 28 2018 (2 qualifying slots)

West/Central EU Qualifier: February 3, 2018 (2 qualifying slots)

South/East EU Qualifier: February 4, 2018 (2 qualifying slots)

EU Open Qualifiers: 5-15 February (8 qualifying slots)

EU Closed Qualifier: February 11-13, 2018

NA Open Qualifiers: January 27-28 and February 3-4, 2018

NA Closed Qualifiers: February 17-19, 2018

If you are a team looking for qualifiers, you can view them at

Tickets to the ECS Season 5 Finals in the SSE Arena, Wembley are already available and can be found here –

Discounted early bird ticket prices are still available. Students with valid ID receive a 50% discount.

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