Team Liquid have announced that they have completed their roster with the signing of Aleksandr "s1mple" Kostyliev.
Liquid had been on the lookout for a player to replace Jacob "FugLy" Medina as they look to cement their status in the North American scene following some mixed results in recent tournaments.
Initially, the North American team trialed former Ninjas in Pyjamas member Aleksi "allu" Jalli, but the 23-year-old ended up declining their offer, with reports suggesting that he will join an all-Finnish side.
s1mple will further his career in North America
After being rebuffed in their attempts to sign the Finnish star, Liquid turned to Aleksandr "s1mple" Kostyliev, one of the hottest properties in Europe. The 18-year-old talent was up for grabs after being released by FlipSid3 Tactics, who had benched the player after he publicly criticised the other team members.
s1mple will be hoping to kick-start a career that has delivered many sizeable servings of controversy in little over a year. His ESL ban is due to expire on February 1, meaning that he will be eligible to play for Liquid in the new ESL ESEA Pro League season, which will start soon.
According to Liquid, s1mple will soon move to Liquid's gaming house and he will be taking English lessons to improve his communication and "to acclimatize to his new surroundings".
"This is an incredibly big step for me, for both my career and life experience. I will be moving to a new country where I don't know anyone, leaving behind my parents, friends and girlfriend in order to pursue a dream I know I can achieve," Kostyliev said in a statement.
"The pressure to succeed is great, but I know that I can handle it. It means a lot to me to finally join Liquid, and their belief in me was a big part of my decision. I will do everything I can in order to achieve good results.
"Thank you to all my fans that have continued to support me, and I promise that I will show my full potential."
Team Liquid now have: