Grinding matchmaking games and PUGs could be extremely frustrating at times in CS:GO - especially when you feel like you should be reaching higher ranks but the results aren't showing. There isn't much you can do to improve your teammates, but there are many things you can do to better yourself not only in your individual play, but also as a teammate!

Learning to throw effective pop flashes for your teammate will help you become not only a better teammate but a better player. Pop flashes should not make a noise nor bounce off of something. It should pop as soon as it reaches the corner so your teammate is able to push off with it.

Learning smokes for basic map control is also important. For example, a top-mid smoke on Mirage or a Z smoke on Cache and a left-side smoke on Inferno. Smokes like these will provide control and get rid of one angle you don’t have to look at when taking an area. One way smokes are also a big help is that they make it easier to get a safe kill to increase your advantage.

Use your mollies wisely: clear OP angles, corners, or counter an execute at your site. Always keep track of the other teams nades, some teams will waste nades at the beginning of the round which will eventually help you take map control easier. Using utility wisely and dying with a full set of nades can really make the difference in being a low tier player to a high tier player. 

There is a fight or flight decision when taking a duel. Decide whether or not you have the advantage in order to get the kill onto the enemy or just leave and fall off. Leaving a spot to avoid dying isn’t a terrible thing. You just need to communicate it to your team. Don’t feel the need to hold an angle either. If someone peeks you while you’re holding an angle you lose the duel due to peeker’s advantage. Always remember that a one-for-one trade on T side is always better than a one-for-one trade on CT. In post plants make sure you’re communicating with your team who’s taking the first initial contact, what you’re watching, and who’s fighting on who’s contact. 

Crosshair placement is key. While you DM and practice on aim_botz keeping the crosshair at head level is very important. Once you practice this enough it becomes muscle memory. The more you play the more you’ll be use to the same angle in your mind. Using maps like aim_botz or Training_aim_csgo2 help with the placement of your crosshair and reaction time. But the best kind of deathmatching is obviously the regular FFA on dust2. Nothing like going back to the basics to DM.

Watching your own demos is the most effective way to better yourself. You can watch how you died and why you died. Knowing how you died can help you learn what not to do again. In that scenario ask yourself questions. Was I overpeeking? Was I in a bad spot? Watching the mistakes and not making them again will be the game changer in making yourself a better player.

Watching professional demos are also a huge help. They have so much to learn from with what off-angles to hold, new smokes, or really nice pop flashes. You also watch to learn the right reactions in what happens throughout the round. Ask yourself why did he rotate here? Why did he go aggressive at this moment? CS is about making the right move at the right time and watching professionals do it will put you in the right direction. If you aren't a demos type of person and enjoy watching CSGO Twitch professional players' streams, one way to improve from watching their streams is by noting down the same things you would do in a demo. Notice how pros in their streams would utilize their utility, or place their crosshairs, or engage in fights and trades.

Everyone in the game has a specific role they like to play which is the entry, awper, lurker, or support rifler. What people don’t understand is that as soon as the round progresses your role can change. You need to realize what role you have as soon as you enter a bombsite. Unless it's a full site execute that your in-game leader has called and you have set nades to throw. If you’re the closest two in - you’re the entry player. If you’re the furthest two back - you are supporting and the one who throws the nades. Learning how to differentiate your role is much easier than it seems.

When lurking for example, let’s say your teammate dies towards the other side of the map trying to take map control - now it’s your opportunity to get a kill and an opening depending on how many numbers they called which at that point you are “entrying”. At any point you can be the support if you’re all the way in the back, which is why it's important to learn all the types of nades to help your team enter the bombsite. 

The first few rounds when you start is to feel out how the other team is playing, once you’ve established this you know what should work vs them. It’s all about map control and what map control you have to set yourself up for a strat. You initially hold back for pushes, and info plays beforehand then set up for what area of the map you want to gain. Use nades to push them back and once you’ve established the choke areas you can let your IGL call a strat and work up that. Always anticipate peeks whenever you’ve taken map control, whether it’d be holding a spot in an off angle or playing anti flash while your teammate is with you. If you die, you have no one to blame but yourself. You should study on creative ways to get opening picks and share them with your team so your default isn’t so dull.

EXAMPLE OF A MIRAGE T-SIDE SETUP

Making an environment where your team can share ideas, and be able to tell each other what the other did wrong in a comfortable manner is always so important. No one should be afraid to speak up about anything. In the heat of the moment things can come off poorly in terms of the tone and the use of the words. Remember that anyone who does this just really wants to win and wants you to better yourself at CS. Discussing hypothetical CS or which I like to call theorycrafting can really help when you sit down with your teammates and talk about the problem. Dissect, deconstruct, and criticize what went wrong and on how you can fix it together. This game can be over complicated, so the key is to just make sure you simplify everything. Just make sure when you go over an issue that everyone is on the same page at the end. 

These tips and pointers should help you improve your own gameplay, and also make you a better teammate. There are still things out of your own control, but as long as you are improving in your own gameplay and you are enhancing yourself as a teammate, it should lead to better results on the battlefield and more enjoyment when you play your matchmaking games or PUGs! Good luck!