How To Counter Irelia In League Of Legends
Last Updated: September 10, 2021
Are you tired of always getting rekt by an enemy Irelia? Did you know that she can be easily countered just by picking the right champions? In this guide, we’ll show you everything you need to know to counter Irelia, the 1v9 queen.
Irelia has been popping off recently thanks to the changes on Wit’s End in patch 11.9. This made the item a must-buy for her as it completely synergizes with her kit. The attack speed, the on hit effects, and the bonus move speed synced so well with Irelia that it made her incredibly overpowered. Matching up against her proved to be a nightmare as laning against a very good Irelia can feel very oppressive. Despite both Irelia and Wit’s End being nerfed in recent patches, she doesn’t show any signs of slowing down and can still hard carry a team to victory. If that’s the case, how on earth do you stop her? By picking the right champions to counter her.
People seem to think that Irelia is this unkillable 1v9 machine that destroys your team in the blink of an eye. While it may look like that, it’s mostly because Irelia players know how to play her and can make adjustments to cover her weaknesses. Sure, a fed Irelia in the top or mid lane is a terrifying sight, but what fed champion isn’t? So, we’ll go over each role and see which champions are best to counter the Blade Dancer.
Irelia is mostly used in the top lane where she can easily destroy most meta champions. If you find yourself playing against an Irelia up top, make sure to pick a good counter for her. Pick the right champion, and you’ll already be beating Irelia as early as champ select.
One of the best counters against Irelia has got to be Sett. Much like Irelia, he can easily outtrade opponents and combined with his cc, he can pretty much lock slippery duelists in place. Sett can also outsustain Irelia thanks to his passive, Pit Grit, which gives him additional health regeneration based on his missing health. Another key thing that gives Sett the upper hand against Irelia is his W, Haymaker, which gives him a shield strong enough to take Irelia’s powerful basic attacks. Mix that with his innate tankiness and you got a champion who could bring Irelia down without breaking a sweat.
Next up, we got Kled the Cantankerous Cavalier. Like Sett, he is incredibly tanky while dealing a ton of damage. Kled’s kit is pretty simple and all you have to do is to go all in whenever Irelia tries to duel you. Just watch out for Irelia’s W so you wouldn’t be wasting your empowered basic attacks whenever your W, Violent Tendencies, is up. If you play your cards right and manage your Courage bar, Irelia wouldn’t be able to kill you even if you were on the brink of death.
This is the champion you want to play whenever you’re going against an Irelia. While he may be more of a Jungler, he can still be decent in the Top Lane especially when he plays a matchup that favors him. The one thing that makes Irelia really strong is her passive, Ionian Fervor. This gives her bonus attack speed when she strikes enemies with spells plus it gives her bonus on hit damage when it reaches max stacks. Since Irelia’s Q, Bladesurge, can instantly reset when killing minions, it’s very easy for her to max out her passive. This is the primary reason why she dominates most opponents in the top lane. With Tryndamere, however, he can match both the damage and attack speed that Irelia can dish out. His passive, Battle Fury, gives him Fury for each attack, critical strike, and killing blow he makes. His Fury also increases his Critical Strike Chance. So when matching up Irelia, just keep building attack speed and crit items. You’ll find yourself coming out on top whenever you duel each other. On top of all that, Tryndamere’s ultimate, Undying Rage, will make him completely immune to death for five whole seconds. Pretty handy when you guys are dueling and you somehow mess up.
Irelia can be easily countered in the Top Lane since there are a lot of champions who can take the brunt of her damage and deal it back to her. The same can’t be said for the Mid Lane, however, since most champions here tend to be squishy and Irelia loves to feast on squishy champions. While technically you can just use the same champions on the Top Lane to counter her in the Mid Lane, sometimes picking those champions in mid won’t be ideal in terms of your team’s composition. So, here are a couple of Irelia counters that will still benefit your team’s comp.
Everyone’s favorite champion to hate. Yasuo can easily beat Irelia thanks to his W. Yasuo’s Wind Wall is a very powerful ability that can block all ranged attacks and spells. That includes two of Irelia’s spells, her W and her ultimate, Vanguard’s Edge. Whenever Irelia tries to last hit minions using her Q, just stand near low health minions and use your own Q, Steel Tempest, to deal damage. By the time she kills enough minions to fully stack her passive, she would already be low on health making her vulnerable to your E>Q>ultimate combo.
Renekton is a great pick on both the Top Lane and the Mid Lane because he is such a lane bully. Thanks to his E, Slice and Dice, he can maneuver around minions to get closer to his opponents and deal a chunk of damage. The same thing applies to Irelia. She will have a hard time trying to stack her passive because of Renekton’s stun and damage. Just try to dodge Irelia’s stun and ultimate so you could go all in with your combo. Irelia wouldn’t be able to survive your combo. In the off chance that she does, just rinse and repeat your combo until she dies.
Since Irelia only sees playing time in the Mid and Top Lane, the other roles shouldn’t have much of a problem trying to fight against her. But sometimes an Irelia snowballs out of control and can pretty much destroy your team all on her own. In this segment, we’ll show champions in other roles who don’t outright counter her but can negate some of her effectiveness.
You won’t encounter an Irelia in the jungle but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try to shut her down. Despite not engaging against her in 1v1 scenarios, these champions would do well to stop her from dealing damage.
While we did say that most Junglers won’t be engaging 1v1 against Irelia, Warwick is one of the few Junglers who can come out on top if they ever go all in against each other. His ultimate, Infinite Duress, can suppress Irelia and lock her in place when she tries to dash away with her Q. Warwick’s insane sustain will also allow him to win every trade with Irelia.
Irelia is a tank shredder so Amumu shouldn’t be able to counter her, right? That’s true but in this case, Amumu finds himself being a direct counter to Irelia because he can prevent her from diving your carries. Amumu’s crowd control can instantly stop Irelia in her tracks and would allow your carries to safely deal damage to her before she can get them.
Skarner is another champion who can lock down Irelia thanks to his many forms of crowd control. He’s durable enough to take Irelia on his own plus his skill combos can stun her more than once in an extended fight. And if that’s not enough, Skarner can just use his ultimate, Impale, to suppress Irelia and drag her to his teammates.
These champions won’t indirectly duel with Irelia but are key in stopping her. They have spells built to help peel for their team and mitigate the damage that Irelia deals.
A key part of Irelia’s kit is her mobility. If you stop her from dashing around, you’ll essentially prevent her from stacking her passive easily. Thresh has a lot of spells in his kit that can prevent Irelia from decimating not just your carries, but your entire team. His E, Flay, can push away Irelia and cancel her channeling spells, while his ultimate, The Box, will put an AoE prison of spectral walls that will slow every champion that passes through it by 99%.
Much like Thresh, Janna can prevent Irelia from ever getting close to your team. She has a knock-up, a slow, and a knockback. Plus, her ultimate heals all her allies inside its vicinity. Whenever Irelia is dangerously close just use one of your crowd control spells to peel for your teammates.
- Irelia only has one hard CC and that’s her E, Flawless Duet. She throws one blade on the ground and on recast, she throws another blade then they fly towards each other and any champion caught in between will be stunned. This spell is very hard to hit and very easy to dodge. Since it will only stun in a straight line, try to throw some zigs and zags in your movement pattern to throw her off.
- Irelia’s W, Defiant Dance, is a channeling spell that allows her to take reduced damage but makes her unable to move when she is channeling. Whenever you see her use this spell, use that opportunity to set up your attack. Wait for her to finish channeling before you go in or if you have crowd control, use it while she is channeling.
- Irelia is very reliant on using her Q to last hit and build stacks on her passive. If you have damaging spells that can zone her and deny her from last hitting minions, make sure to spam it.
So there you have it! All you need to know about countering Irelia in League of Legends. We hope you found this guide helpful and make sure to check back with us for more guides on your favorite games. Have fun and see you on the Rift!