“The game is going to come down to the last minute,” said Jang “Jang-yeong” Hyun-jin, one of Liquid’s stars.
“It’s going to be a battle for survival.
If we don’t win it, we lose.”
Liquid has been on a downward spiral since its victory over SK Telecom T1 in the Season 3 World Championship in July.
Its only victory since then came against Samsung Galaxy, a Korean team that finished in the fourth spot in the tournament.
Liquid has struggled in every other matchup against the Korean powerhouse, losing in the semifinals to the likes of Team SoloMid and the second round to the former KT Rolster.
It is the first time since the start of the year that Liquid has not lost a series in a major tournament.
The team’s recent struggles may be explained by the fact that Jang, the team’s star player, has struggled with his health in the past.
In March, Liquid won its first two games against SK Telecom, including a three-game sweep of the Korean squad that saw Jang return to action following the wrist injury that sidelined him for the remainder of the 2015 season.
But after losing two of those three games, Liquid struggled to score any points.
Liquid ended the month by losing its next three games against Samsung and KT Rols.
Jang told ESPN that he believes his wrist injury is affecting his play and that he may not be able to practice much this season.
He said he has a feeling his wrist is going into a permanent condition and that there is “a lot of uncertainty” surrounding his recovery.
Jung-yeol said he feels like the team has lost its depth and that they are lacking a spark in the backline.
“We’re losing all the firepower that we have, and that’s why we have to play so many games together,” he said.
“You can’t play like this, because you’ll never be able go through a slump like this.”
Liquid lost its first game against SKT, the season’s first series, but then won three straight games to start the series against Samsung.
The Koreans were on the brink of victory when they were forced to play five games in a row because of the wrist issue.
After the match, Jang said the team decided to play three more games together.
“When you play against two teams who are really strong, it feels really good.
You don’t think you can lose,” he added.
“And that’s when I realized we’re playing well together.”
Liquid is still one game away from the semifinals of the League of Legends World Championship, but it is not guaranteed to qualify.
In its first major tournament, Liquid lost to Team Solo Mid, which ended up finishing seventh in the 2015 World Championship.
Liquid is hoping to make up ground in the group stages this time around, but its odds of making the semifinals look better are not great.
Jang has not said whether he will be able play in the next two major tournaments in Europe and North America.
The loss of Jang was an especially sad one for Liquid’s players.
“Jung will be missed by everyone in the team,” said Kim “PraY” Jong-jin.
“He was a player that could take a big step forward if he wasn’t injured, and he will forever be a hero to Liquid fans.”
Liquid will play five matches in two days against SKTelecom T1.
Liquid will play Samsung Galaxy and SK Telecom in the first two rounds.
In the third round, Liquid will face the Samsung Galaxy squad that finished fifth at the 2015 Worlds.
The finals will be played on Thursday, April 7.