Spartak Moscow has become yet another soccer team to join the eSports industry. Yesterday, team officials announced that they had acquired Counter-Strike: Global Offensive players who will be competing under the Spartak Moscow flag in the future.
The decision of the Russian soccer team to acquire their own eSports team hardly comes a surprise. A number of teams from Russia and other East European countries have already formed their eSports teams. Many of these teams are already more or less successfully competing in the different eSports competitions.
However, when one of the biggest Russian soccer teams decides to do the same, it is still a major headline. That said, this is not their first venture into the eSports industry. Last year, Spartak Moscow has signed FIFA player Sergei ‘KEFIR’ Nikiforov who currently competes under the flag of this Russian soccer giants.
CS:GO Just a Start
It seems that Spartak Moscow will not be expanding just to Counter-Strike: Global Offensive competitions. They will likely be forming their League of Legends as well as their Dota 2 teams in the near future. The forming of their League of Legends and Dota 2 teams has not been officially confirmed yet, but this confirmation is expected to arrive in the next couple of days.
Talking about the CS:GO team, it needs to be said that the players that they’ve signed have already been part of the eSports industry, albeit on the amateur level. Russian eSports team Rush3D has been present on the country’s eSports scene for a while, but their presence was mostly reflected in amateur matches.
With the deal with Spartak Moscow, they will be moving from amateur to professional waters, representing Spartak Moscow’s CS:GO division. Players that will be part of this CS:GO team are Dmitriy ‘facecrack’ Alekseyev, Pavel ‘AERO’ Surmach, Anton ‘kibaken’ Kolesnikov, Anatoliy ‘liTTle’ Yashin, and Artem ‘Art’ Shevchenko.
At one point, there were rumours that Spartak Moscow would sign the Gambit Gaming squad. This did not happen as the team decided to focus on the developing talents in favour of acquiring already established players.
Other Teams to Feature Established Players
However, it seems that Spartak Moscow won’t follow the same pattern with their League of Legends and Dota 2 teams. According to many reports over the last couple of weeks, it seems that Team Empire might be playing LoL and Dota 2 competitions under the flag of Spartak Moscow.
Spartak Moscow has already established a connection with Team Empire. Recently, Team Empire has published the statement of Spartak Moscow on their pages. This led many to conclude that Team Empire will soon be playing for Spartak Moscow.
Team Empire is an already established eSports franchise. The team has competed in several Dota 2 majors while their LoL squad currently plays in the LCL Challenger Series. All this will make eSports even more popular in Russia and the entire CIS region. It won’t take long before many other sports collectives follow the similar path, creating their own eSports squads and joining the industry. As more big sports names become involved, the fan base will, undoubtedly, continue to grow.