I'm a fairly low level North American Counter Strike: Global Offensive player. I'm looking to get better and want to join an amateur team to perhaps play brackets and that sort of thing in.
I'm therefore looking at ESEA and/or ESL. ESL seems to lean towards the European crowd (but they do have a NA subsidiary) so I've set them aside (and mention it only for completeness).
Anyway, I'm leaning towards ESEA as they seem more suited to an NA player. My question is as a low level player, is using this service worth my time and money at this point?
Is there a balancing system (whether like match making or not)? And am I likely to find games as a Solo player (I'm hoping to find a team to join while playing).
Update: I posted my first-hand experience with ESEA as an answer; my conclusion is there too.