ESL Challenger Europe Betting Tips & Live Streams

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About ESL Challenger Europe

The ESL Challenger League is part of the ESL Pro League circuit. It acts as a qualifier for the ESL Conference, which itself is a feeder league for the ESL Pro League, one of the biggest Counter-Strike: Global Offensive esports tournaments worldwide.

The Challenger League, in its current form, began in 2022. It kicked off in January with Season 40 for three separate circuits across the Europe, North America and Asia-Pacific regions. Seasons 41, 42, and 43 followed over the year. 

The winners of the Challenger Leagues from the three major regions - Europe, NA, and APAC - will seed into the Conference League, replacing the slots taken up until 2021 by the DreamHack Open league, which has now been discontinued in favor of the Challenger League.

Where to bet on the ESL Challenger Series

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ESL Challenger Europe Live Streaming & Where to Watch

Most of the popular CS:GO competitive tournaments are streamed online on popular platforms and are available for free. You can use:

  • Betting Sites bet365, Stake and Pinnacle

The ESL broadcasts the ESL Challenger League Europe on their official CS:GO Twitch channels: 

  • ESL_CSGO
  • ESL_CSGOB

Highlights are broadcast weekly on Tuesdays and Wednesdays on the same handles listed above. 

ESL Challenger Europe Format

Twenty-four teams contest the Challenger League Europe. Here’s how those slots are distributed among teams:

  • Five slots are allotted to the lowest seeds from the previous edition of the ESL Pro League
  • Twelve slots are filled by teams from the previous season of the Challenger League
  • Two slots are given to the top two seeds from the ESEA: Advanced Division - Europe
  • The five slots that remain will go to the top five teams of the Relegation League

Along with the cash reward, there are other incentives for teams to do well in the Challenger League, such as:

  • The winner goes through to the next edition of the ESL Pro League Conference
  • Seeds 2 through 16 will be confirmed for the next season of the Challenger League
  • The bottom seven, seeds 17 through 23, will be demoted to the Relegation League

Five separate divisions provide a qualification path to the Challenger League, namely:

  • The Challenger League Relegation
  • The ESEA Advanced
  • The ESEA Main
  • The ESEA Intermediate
  • The ESEA Open

The Relegation League is the first phase of the Challenger League: Europe that provides a path for the lower seeds and relegated teams to climb back into the Challenger circuit. Sixteen teams compete in a double-elimination bracket. This  is how the seeds are distributed:

  • Seven slots go to seeds 17 through 23 of the previous Challenger League
  • Eight slots go to seeds 3 through 10 of the last ESEA Advanced Division
  • One slot is reserved for a direct invite by the ESL

The top six seeds at the end of the Relegation League will qualify again for the next season of the Challenger League, while the lower ten will drop to the ESEA Advanced Division.

The ESEA regular season encompasses four main divisions – advanced, main, intermediate, and open. 

The regular season for each of these is carried out as a round-robin, with each team playing 14 matches. A fixed number of teams from each division will proceed to the Playoffs for that category.

Here’s a brief outline of how the Playoffs Division is structured:

  • The Advanced Division takes the top 32 teams from the ESEA Advanced regular season standings. They contest in a double-elimination gauntlet, with the winner and runner-up qualifying for the Challenger League while seeds 3 through 10 will head to the Relegation League.
  • Next up is the Main Division, which features the top 48 teams from the ESEA Main regular season, contesting a double-elimination gauntlet again. The top 16 teams will progress to the Advanced Division next season, while the remaining will stay in the Main Division.
  • The Intermediate Division takes 16 of the top teams from the Intermediate regular season, the winner going through to the Advanced Division while the remaining head to the Main Division.
  • The Open Division also takes the top 16 seeds from the regular season, the winner heading to the Advanced Division while the rest go on to the Main Division.

ESL Challenger Europe Prize Pools

The Challenger League offers a total prize pool of $50,000. Here’s how it’s distributed among the winners:

  • First place takes home $20,000
  • The runners-up win $11,500
  • Third place gets $7000
  • Fourth place gets $4000
  • 5th-6th place win $2500 each
  • 7th-8th place take home $1,250 each

All four of the Challenger League Divisions also offer cash rewards to their winners, though considerably lower than that provided at the Main Event.

  • The Advanced Division pools a total of $20,300 into its events, out of which the winner gets $7000 and the runner-up $4300
  • The Main Division offers a $10,000 prize pool, with $3500 going to the winner and $2200 to the runner-up
  • The Intermediate Division’s prize pool is capped at $6000. The winner takes home $2000 while the runner-up takes $1200
  • The Open Division distributes $3000 among its top seeds, with the winner taking home $1000

ESL Challenger Europe Teams

1win has been the most consistent from Europe, though they didn't win a single edition of the Challenger League in 2022. They seeded as runners-up twice in Season 40 and Season 41 and finished third in Season 42.

HEET won the first edition of the league, Season 40, and qualified for Season 16 of the ESL Premier League Conference. They seeded 5th-6th after beating Falcons Esports in the lower bracket, and qualified for the ESL Pro League. After that, they finished 7th-8th in Season 41 and 5th-6th in Season 42.

Falcons Esports became the first Saudi Arabian team to win the ESL Challenger League from Europe when they triumphed in Season 41. They haven’t had much luck after that, finishing 7th-8th in Season 42 and crashing out in the first round of Season 43.

ESL Challenger Europe Winners

Different teams have won the three seasons of the Challenger League conducted so far, which bodes well for the league in terms of drawing out talent. 

Some teams have been more successful than others, with ATK, Pain, Rare Atom, and HEET, in particular, having maintained a high standard at their regional leagues. 

Here’s the full list of winners of the Challenger League as of 2022:

  • Season 42: Europe, 9INE
  • Season 41: Europe, Falcons Esports
  • Season 40: Europe, HEET