Olofmeister returns to add class to FaZe Clan in time for ELEAGUE Premier

The news broke (again) last night that Olof ‘olofmeister’ Kajbjer Gustafsson has informed his FaZe Clan colleagues that he will return in time for ELEAGUE Premier.

The eight-team event begins on July 21, and features all the best CSGO sides in the world, as well as some fan favourites like MIBR and Fnatic, and will mark the end of FaZe’s time playing with Jørgen ‘cromen’ Robertsen, the stand-in they borrowed from Team Dignitas.

While some voices in the community had called for Cromen to be given a long-term chance in the team, the abject failure to beat a crowd-boosted BIG in Cologne was a great illustration of why this had to happen. The superteam had looked utterly devoid of ideas on terrorist side in particular, playing as though BIG were the god-squad, and they expected to run into a hail of bullets before taking a swift flight home. For a team with that much ability and experience, the loss was an embarrassing one, and may have prompted some harsh conversations within the group about the need to resolve the situation.

While Olof is not an in-game leader, he is a winner, and also one of the most experienced big-game players in CSGO today, and will act as an invaluable foil to the tactical leader Finn ‘karrigan’ Andersen. His mentality and calm in the biggest moments will also help the likes of Nikola ‘NiKo’ Kovač and Håvard ‘rain’ Nygaard, who are yet to win a Major, something the former has had some struggles with.

Those on social media also suggested a motivating factor could be that the replacements being mooted now were actually on his level, rather than Cromen or Richard ‘Xizt’ Landström, which meant he was finally in danger of losing his spot on the team for good. While it is true that Olof has done a fantastic job of keeping the reason for his absence a secret, that is frankly fanciful, and ignores the fierce competitive nature that has got the Swede to this point.

Psychological advantage of four gods

The fact he is back for ELEAGUE Premier means the team will have time to remember how they play as a five, and the timing with the London Major in mind is pretty good, providing Olof’s mechanical skills are not too rusty. That will probably be the biggest question, but this is a player that has already returned from surgery once in his career, and while we might never get peak Olof again he can comfortably get back to the elite level.

The final point many have not yet addressed is the psychological element that comes with having a team of gods. Sure, other sides may feel they can pressure in-game leader ‘karrigan’ in certain situations, but knowing that you can kill any of NiKo, rain, Ladislav ‘GuardiaN’ Kovács or Olof and still have to face the other three is devastating for players that grew up idolising some of those very same names.

Likewise, knowing you can look to your left or right and see a god of CSGO must be comforting for the likes of NiKo and rain, although the former has already stated that playing with a stand-in had some positives. According to the former mous man, he started to feel more responsibility for the result, and go back into carry mode, something that had apparently not been the case with Olof around.

If that continues but Olof comes back to his expected level, then we might finally have some real competition at the top of the game, rather than a couple of good teams that can lose to cheese or a home-boosted team that is normally tier two at best. That would be great not just for FaZe, but all of CSGO, as the game is in something of a slump in terms of the top ten, and needs a true rivalry at the pinnacle, rather than just crowd narratives.

Image credit: FaZe Clan