NAVI recruiting to find next CS stars ahead of Counter-Strike 2 release

Michal Konkol/BLAST

Ukrainian esports organization NAVI has invited CS:GO players to apply for spots in its academy teams as it looks to revamp its youth ranks for Counter-Strike 2.

NAVI have set up a dedicated page called ‘ROAD TO NAVI’ outlining the requirements that candidates must satisfy in order to be part of the organization’s academy project. The Ukrainian organization is looking for players aged between 16 and 19, with a minimum 4000 FACEIT ELO of 4000 and no ties to any other organization.

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Additionally, interested players must submit a 30- to 60-second video explaining what makes them the perfect candidate to join NAVI.

NAVI added that it will prioritize applications from candidates with a player profile on and with a social media presence and a fanbase on platforms like Twitch, Instagram, and YouTube.

NAVI rebuilds Counter-Strike academy

For the first time in NAVI’s history, the academy’s doors will be open to players from outside of Eastern Europe. Previously, all players who came through the academy were from either Ukraine or Russia.

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Last month, NAVI hired David ‘Kairi’ de Miguel, a former Counter-Strike pro with almost two decades of experience, to guide NAVI Junior. NAVI Youth, the organization’s tertiary squad, currently features only Ukrainian players, who could be promoted to the Junior squad in the future.

João Ferreira/Dexerto
b1t, a NAVI academy graduate, is now playing for the main team

The overhaul of NAVI’s academy project is part of the organization’s restructuring of its Counter-Strike division. In July, NAVI’s main CS:GO team also became international following the signings of Aleksi ‘⁠Aleksib’ Virolainen, Mihai ‘⁠iM’ Ivan, and Justinas ‘⁠jL’ Lekavicius.

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NAVI CEO Yevhen Zolotarov told Dexerto in February that shifting away from its Ukrainian roots and building international teams will be vital for the organization’s expansion plans. “We will always be a Ukrainian club,” Zolotarov said. “But at the same time, we want to be a global brand.”

NAVI’s academy project is one of the most successful ones in the CS:GO scene, developing players like Valeriy ‘b1t’ Vakhovskiy, Ilya ‘m0NESY’ Osipov, and Daniil ‘headtr1ck’ Valitov. The first is part of NAVI’s main team, while the latter two were sold to G2 Esports and NIP, respectively.

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