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With the Worlds 2021 play-in stage now over, all eyes are focused on the main event. The Worlds 2021 group stage kicks off on Oct. 11. Here is a breakdown of who is playing, when they are playing, and how to watch.

Format

The Worlds 2021 Groups format features four groups of four teams each. The four teams in each group are seeded based on performance during the 2021 League of Legends season. Each four-team group will participate in a double round-robin. This means each team in their respective group will play every other team in their group twice once on the blue side and once on the red side. The first half of the round-robin for each group will take place over the course of three days with games from every group taking place on those days. The second portion of the round-robin will have each group play their entire second half on one day.

The top two teams in each group with the best records after the six-game double round-robin will advance to the knockout stage.

Schedule

Monday, Oct. 11 (starting at 7 a.m. EST)

  • DWG KIA vs. FunPlus Phoenix
  • RNG vs. PSG
  • Fnatic vs. HLE
  • Gen.G vs LNG Esports
  • T1 vs. DFM
  • EDward Gaming vs. 100 Thieves
  • Team Liquid vs. MAD Lions
  • Rogue vs. Cloud9

Tuesday, Oct. 12 (starting at 7 a.m. EST)

  • T1 vs. EDward Gaming
  • Rogue vs. DWG KIA
  • PSG vs. HLE
  • Fnatic vs. RNG
  • FunPlus Phoenix vs. Cloud9
  • 100 Thieves vs. DFM
  • MAD Lions vs. Gen.G
  • Team Liquid vs. LNG Esports

Wednesday, Oct. 13 (starting at 7 a.m. EST)

  • RNG vs. HLE
  • MAD Lions vs. LNG Esports
  • FunPlus Phoenix vs. Rogue
  • PSG vs. Fnatic
  • Gen.G vs. Team Liquid
  • DWG KIA. vs. Cloud9
  • EDward Gaming vs. DFM
  • 100 Thieves vs. T1

Friday, Oct. 15 (starting at 7 a.m. EST)

  • FunPlus Phoenix vs. DWG KIA
  • Rogue vs. Cloud9
  • FunPlus Phoenix vs. Cloud9
  • DWG KIA vs. Rogue
  • Rogue vs. FunPlus Phoenix
  • DWG KIA vs. Cloud9

Saturday, Oct. 16 (starting at 7 a.m. EST)

  • Edward Gaming vs. DFM
  • T1 vs. 100 Thieves
  • Edward Gaming vs. T1
  • 100 Thieves vs. DFM
  • T1 vs. DFM
  • 100 Thieves vs. EDG

Sunday, Oct. 17 (starting at 7 a.m. EST)

  • PSG vs. HLE
  • RNG vs. Fnatic
  • PSG vs. RNG
  • Fnatic vs. HLE
  • RNG vs. HLE
  • Fnatic vs. PSG

Monday, Oct. 19 (starting at 7 a.m. EST)

  • Gen.G vs. MAD Lions
  • Team Liquid vs. LNG Esports
  • Gen.G vs. LNG Esports
  • MAD Lions vs. Team Liquid
  • Team Liquid vs. Gen.G
  • MAD Lions vs. LNG Esports

Group Breakdown

Group A

The first of four groups consists of the reigning Worlds 2020 champion, DWG KIA. They will begin their title defense in a group that consists of one of the favorites to win the entire event, China’s FunPlus Phoenix – who won Worlds 2019. Rounding out the group is LEC third-seed, Rogue and LCS third-seed, Cloud9. The NA vs EU rivalry this time around will most likely be trying to play spoiler instead of fighting against each other.

Group B

Headlining Group B is two of the oldest organizations in competitive League of Legends. China’s old guard, Edward Gaming are returning to Worlds as the 2021 LPL champions. The League of Legends GOAT led, T1 is also returning to Worlds after an absence last year. Lee “Faker” Sang-hyeok will be looking to capture his fourth Worlds title. Continuing the trend of teams returning to Worlds after an absence is the first-seed from North America, 100 Thieves, who are making their first appearance since 2018. Finally, there is the play-in darling, DetonatioN FocusMe. DFM will be making their first-ever appearance in the group stage and are a dark horse team in this fun group.

Group C

Group C consists of one of the breakout stories of 2021, the PCS champs PSG Talon who had a fantastic performance at the Mid-Season Invitational earlier this year. EU’s Fnatic is also present in this group after a heroic run through the LEC summer playoffs. But the favorites in the group is the LPL third-seed Royal Never Give Up, who are the reigning MSI champs. RNG stumbled in the LPL summer split but still managed to qualify for Worlds after a late-season surge. Capping off Group C is team Jeong “Chovy” Ji-hoon who are also known as Hanwha Life Esports.

Group D

The so-called “group of life” this year happens to be Group D. This group consists of four teams that can all realistically finish in first or last. The favorites however are LEC champion MAD Lions, who are coming off back-to-back LEC titles in the spring and summer. The LCK second-seed Gen.G are present in this group as well. Team Liquid is NA’s third seed, who finally figured things out late into the summer season. And rounding out the group is LNG Esports who qualified through the play-in stage. But make no mistake, LNG is as dangerous as any other team in the group.

How to Watch/First Game matchup

The group stage kicks off on October 11 at 4 a.m. PST/7 a.m. EST with a potential Worlds 2021 finals preview between juggernauts DK and FPX. Spectators can catch the action live on Twitch and YouTube. On top of the official broadcast, there are a few popular figures in the community co-streaming the action. For spectators with Riot accounts, players can earn exclusive in-game drops by watching the games through the lolesports website. Players will earn A LOT of drops just by linking their account.

ASU alum with a B.A in Sports Journalism, Warren is one of the premier TFT Journalists in the scene and is a decent TFT player as well who has peaked Challenger and has had multiple accounts in Master+ over all sets. Warren also specializes in other esports content including League of Legends, Valorant, Smash Bros, and more.
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