Schalke 04 vs. G2 Esports: LEC Match of the Week Preview

League of Legends. Courtesy of Riot Games.
League of Legends. Courtesy of Riot Games. /
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Elise. League of Legends.
League of Legends. Photo Courtesy of Riot Games. /

For the third consecutive week, G2 Esports take to the stage for the LEC Match of the Week as they face their closest rival for 1st place, Schalke 04, in a game that could see G2’s lead at the top of the standings be reduced to a single win.

Having finally surpassed the half-way mark of the 2019 Spring Split, the LEC standings are starting to take shape presenting EU fans with a clear distinction between serious playoff contenders and those who are likely to miss out. Nevertheless, with the revival of Fnatic, Misfits Gaming’s collapse, and G2’s shocking loss to Origen in Week 5, places are still up for grabs and nothing has been decided yet as we head into the final four weeks of the inaugural LEC Spring Split. This weekend’s round of fixtures kicks off with the LEC Match of the Week as league leaders G2 Esports face off against Schalke 04, a team hoping to bridge the gap between themselves and their opponents and make a claim for the top spot.

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Both sides head into Friday’s game after poor Week 5 performances in which they doubled their combined losses for the season due to their surprising defeats against Team Vitality and Origen. Nonetheless, with Schalke and G2 looking to bounce back this weekend and turn the tide on their small dip in form, the LEC Match of the Week promises to be an exciting affair.

Schalke 04

Schalke have been extremely impressive so far this season and are widely regarded to be the second-best team in the LEC at the moment; their clean execution of game plans and intelligent macro decision making has been amongst the best in Europe over the last five weeks.

Memento’s early game aggression is the key to Schalke’s success as he looks to impact the entire map through creative jungle pathing and smart gank opportunities. As a result, his team often find themselves in a 1-2k gold lead within the first 15 minutes of the game which they then snowball via calculated decision-making around objectives.

That being said, Schalke 04 are certainly prone to collapsing on the rare occasions that they fall behind in the early game and are yet to pick up a victory this season from a deficit of 1.5k gold or more. This could be a major issue when coming up against G2 Esports, a team that averages a gold difference of +2593 at 15 minutes.

One to Watch – Elias “Upset” Lipp

It would be wrong not to single out Upset as Schalke’s most important player for the LEC Match of the Week and the whole of 2019. The LEC broadcast team are constantly reminding us that he is Schalke’s “franchise player” this season and rightly so.

The German AD Carry burst onto the EU LCS scene in 2018 after being promoted through the Challenger Series with Schalke 04 alongside the likes of Smittyj, Caedrel, Norskeren, and current teammate Memento. Since then he’s gone from strength to strength, wowing the European audience and analysts throughout his debut LCS season and this year is no different.

Already picking up three Player of the Game awards in Schalke’s seven victories so far this season, Upset has continued to showcase his immense talent as a marksman in 2019 and is now arguably the best AD Carry in Europe.

This weekend he faces an unfamiliar bottom lane opponent in G2’s Perkz after his role swap in the off-season. There’s no doubt that Schalke fans will be anticipating a dominating performance from their star AD Carry against a player unfamiliar to the role, which could well be the catalyst for a Schalke victory on Friday.