Schalke 04 has confirmed that its LEC spot is up for grabs. The team’s managing director of esports, Tim Reichert, tells The Esports Observer that discussions are currently underway, but “there is no final decision yet.” However, Reichert also believes that an update may be on the way in “10-14 days”.
The esports wing of Schalke 04 football club currently operates teams in League of Legends, FIFA, and Pro Evolution Soccer. However, due to ongoing financial issues – which have been attributed to the ongoing pandemic – there has been a great deal of speculation over the future of the division for several months. Back in February, Reichert said that a sell-off was potentially on the cards. With this latest update, it now seems highly likely we will see a new name taking Schalke’s place in the LEC.
Schalke 04 first entered the LEC (then EU LCS) in Summer 2016, having bought out the roster of Elements. After a disastrous first split, the team was relegated to the Challenger Series, but returned to the top tier of European competition at the beginning of 2018. The team has since experienced mixed success, narrowly missing out on a Worlds spot to G2 in 2018, while struggling to make an impact for much of last year.
The 2021 Spring iteration of Schalke’s LoL team secured a fourth place finish in the playoffs. However, having just made two major roster changes – the benching of Erberk ‘Gilius’ Demir for Thomas ‘Kirei’ Yuen, alongside the promotion of Ilias ‘Nuclearint’ Bizriken to the starting mid lane position in lieu of the departed Felix ‘Abbedagge’ Braun – it is unclear if the team will be able to repeat its top four finish this time round.
— Schalke 04 Esports (@S04Esports) June 3, 2021
With the 2021 Summer Split just under a week away from kicking off, it won’t be long until we can see for ourselves if this revamped Schalke side can make one, potentially last go of it before its fate is decided.