For years, Cloud9 and Fnatic have been at each other’s throats. From the first meeting between the organizations in the 2013 Worlds Quarterfinals to their most recent meeting at 2017 Rift Rivals, these two teams have been at the forefront of the historic rivalry between Europe and North America. It’s impossible to not mention the history between C9 and Fnatic in the same breath when discussing the rivalry between Europe and NA. And every time these two storied teams do battle on the Rift, they prove why that is the case time and time again.
The legends of these two teams only continue to grow over time, and on Sunday, EU dealt a significant blow to NA, as Fnatic finally conquered their longtime rivals for the first time in three years, punching their ticket to the 2018 World Finals in the process.
For the first time in the history of the rivalry, Fnatic captured the season series over Cloud9, as their North American counterparts held the high ground in 2013 (3-2) and 2017 (2-0), while drawing with FNC in ‘14 (2-2), ‘15 (1-1), and ‘16 (0-0). However, in 2018, the script has been flipped convincingly, as Fnatic now owns a 3-0 record over Cloud9 this season after a dominating Best-of-5 in which the average game time sat just over 31 minutes.
The series saw Martin “Rekkles” Larsson post a KDA of 21.0, while Rasmus “Caps” Winther racked up 19 total kills over the course of three games, leading the team to a gold lead of at least 10,000 by the end of each contest. With stats like these in mind, it’s easy to see that Fnatic simply outclassed Cloud9 in every facet of the game on Sunday not once,not twice, but three times, with all occasions proving to be extremely convincing.
As of now, the all-time head-to-head record between the teams sits at a dead even 8-8. With seven tournaments over five years in the bag for both organizations. And now, the future only looks brighter, as the rivalry between EU and NA is heating up to degrees it has never seen before. And while Cloud9 and Fnatic represent their respective regions to the fullest extent, back home, their domestic competitors are gearing up for what could be the most intense season of European and North American regional play in the history of professional League of Legends.
But, for now, Fnatic still has work to do. And after establishing command over their next opponents, Invictus Gaming, with a 2-1 record over the LPL representatives in the Group Stage, the European champions are actually marching on towards Incheon as the favorites. For the West, next week’s Final could be a turning point in the game’s history, and for Fnatic, they could rise into the ranks of legends, joining SK Telecom T1 as the only team to ever win multiple World titles.
Photo Credit: League of Legends, Riot Games, Lolesports Fnatic