Movistar Riders bench Steel & fire Shokz. Movistar Riders are making changes to their lineup after a difficult first half of 2021, recently announcing that they will part ways with Kristjan “shokz” Jakobson and bench longtime in-game leader Lucas “Steel” Lopes. The Brasilian was with the team since 2019.
The two changes at Movistar Riders come as a result of a mixed but rather poor season. The European team improved quite a bit in 2021 when they signed Owen “smooya” Butterfield and achieved a very good team ranking of 22nd shortly thereafter, but plummeted rapidly to 66th after moving up in early July, only to rise again.
Can Movistar come back stronger?
The plummet in the rankings came when Movistar Riders finished last in the ESL National Championship Global Playoffs Spring, then 7th-8th in REPUBLEAGUE TIPOS Season 1 and 11th-12th in ESEA Premier Season 37 Europe, where they won by against SAW in the deciding match and narrowly escaped relegation.
The Movistar Riders now have only two long-time members, Alejandro “alex” Masanet and Alejandro “mopoz” Fernández-Quejo Cano, as well as newcomer and AWPler smooya. Coach Galder “bladE” Barcena now has to find two replacements for the second half of this year and it will certainly not be easy to find a new and competent in-game leader.
Movistar Riders now have the following line-up:
Alejandro “mopoz” Fernández-Quejo Cano
Alejandro “alex” Masanet
Owen “smooya” Butterfield
Galder “bladE” Barcena (coach)
Lucas “steel” Lopes (benched)