After six months, G2 are in the market for a new CSGO IGL again

Helena Kristiansson/ESL Gaming via ESPAT

Aleksi ‘Aleksib’ Virolainen has revealed that G2 Esports have allowed him to explore other options ahead of the summer break.

The Finnish tactician confirmed on July 16 an early end to his tenure as in-game leader of G2’s CS:GO team, having been signed in January from OG in a deal that saw Nemanja ‘nexa’ Isaković move in the opposite direction.

Without going into detail about the team’s decision, Aleksib announced on Twitter that he had “been allowed by G2 to explore my options elsewhere.”

Aleksib’s removal comes after a dismal run of form by G2, who had started the year with a runner-up finish at IEM Katowice 2022 — an incredibly encouraging sign for a lineup that had also been bolstered by the arrival of Russian prodigy Ilya ‘m0NESY’ Osipov.

But the team struggled to maintain that level of success for the rest of the season. At PGL Major Antwerp, they couldn’t even reach the playoffs after losing to FURIA in the final round of the New Legends Stage.

At the BLAST Premier Spring Final last month, Aleksib was at a loss for words when asked to describe his side’s capitulation against Vitality in the semi-finals. “I just felt like, ‘How did we lose this match?’” Aleksib said. “We still have one more tournament, which is Cologne. Let’s see what happens next time. It just sucks.”

Adela Sznajder/ESL Gaming via ESPAT
After a promising start to the year, G2 struggled to remain relevant

IEM Cologne presented itself as a make-or-break event for G2 before the summer break. But things looked dire from the moment the team first took to the server as they lost to Movistar Riders, who would turn out to be the tournament’s surprise package.

G2 still bounced back with a 2-0 victory over ENCE, only to lose to NIP in the following round in a three-map affair, exiting the tournament in 9th-12th place.

Flurry of activity

The break is expected to be a busy period for many teams in the CS:GO scene. Vitality and Complexity have been nothing short of underwhelming this year and could pull the trigger on changes, while Team Liquid are still looking for a new fifth player. Meanwhile, MOUZ and Astralis may have bought themselves some time after reaching the IEM Cologne playoffs.

G2 now have a month to find a new in-game leader before the new season kicks off in mid-August. The BLAST Premier Fall Groups will be the team’s first event after the summer break, followed by ESL Pro League Season 16.

“It feels like crap to have the CSGO summer holiday start when we most suck,” G2 owner Carlos ‘ocelote’ Rodríguez Santiago wrote on July 11. “I have lots of thinking to do.”

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