The 2021 League of Legends World Championship will take place from Oct. 5 to Nov. 6 in Reykjavík, Iceland, at the Laugardalshöll Indoor Sporting Arena, the same venue that previously hosted Riot Games’ VALORANT Masters and Mid-Season Invitational events, sources familiar with the plans told Dot Esports.
The event will be broken down into five stages, the same as the previous format of the annual event. The play-in stage will take place from Oct. 5 to 9 with the group stage running from Oct. 11 to 18. The playoffs will begin with the quarterfinals on Oct. 22 to 25, semifinals on Oct. 30 to 31, and finals on Nov. 6. No crowd will be allowed to attend.
Each stage of the event will take place solely in Iceland as a result of concern around the COVID-19 pandemic and the ability of players from most regions being able to travel to the country, as well as return to their home countries after the event. Riot is expected to confirm the Iceland event and the dates for it this week.
The move to Iceland came after Riot confirmed on Aug. 24 that the event would no longer take place in China, where it was initially scheduled, and would instead move to a European country. Dot Esports then reported on Aug. 30 that the event would be exclusive to Iceland after Riot safely ran the two aforementioned events in the country earlier this year. The move to Europe, Riot said in its announcement, is due to rising concerns around the Delta variant and those travel restrictions.
So far, only one region is reportedly unable to attend the event: the Vietnam Championship Series. That region has missed out on the 2020 World Championship, which took place with significant COVID-19 protocols in China in October and November 2020, and the 2021 Mid-Season Invitational in Iceland. Amid the coronavirus pandemic, visas for Vietnam residents have been increasingly restricted. How Riot will resolve the format without the VCS team present has not been announced.
All 22 teams that will travel to Iceland have been confirmed after regional leagues have taken place both online and offline around the world. Participants include LPL winner EDward Gaming, LCK winner DWG KIA, LEC winner MAD Lions, and LCS winner 100 Thieves, among others.
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