Friday, 3 May 2013

Irish Football Previews

This weekend has been a long time coming. Pretty much everybody has been looking forward to a particular match up in the Shamrock Bowl Conference all year and, after it was postponed due to the weather, it has finally come around. Two IAFL-1 games add to the Bank Holiday football goodness!

Who'll win? Trojans or Rebels? - photo by Ariane Boudias

GFL1 – Week 1 Preview

Preseason review
The long German season is about to begin in one of the top leagues in Europe. With reigning champions Schwäbisch Hall Unicorns looking a good outfit to reach the German championship after convincingly beating French giants Amiens Spartans twice already in the Eurobowl. 

This most interesting goings on this past off-season seem to be coming from the Dresden Monarchs who in recent years have fallen in the rankings. This season they have signed both Quarterback Jeff Welsh and Running Back Trevar Deed from the Kiel Baltic Hurricanes who continuously make national championships and for the past 2 years have fallen mere points short of the title. Jeff Welsh is arguably one of the best quarterbacks currently playing in Europe.

Berlin Rebels @ Berlin Adler
Kevin Ramay from California Lutheran will be quarterbacking the Adler this year, after a very successful year with Kyle Callahan, a decent year with Clint Toon, and a disappointing year with Alex Good last season (Who consequently is now with Graz Giants) the Adler will be looking to start this season with a bang in their cross city rivalry game and show their fans that they’re back at the top of the German league and seriously battling for the Eurobowl again. With a lot of players on both teams having played for one or the other at some point in their careers this isn't as much of a heated rivalry game.

Conrad Meadows of the Adler last season showed his worth on offense and defense and earned a call back this season, including an impressive performance versus the Blitz and played a big part in their victory in that game.

I’m almost certain Wanja Mueller the Adler will come out on top with the Rebels showing no signs of any particularly special imports and the better EU players in the city travelling to play for the Adler instead it’s always tough for the Rebels.
Berlin by 4 scores

National League Predictions

National North

Clyde Valley Blackhawks vs. Glasgow Tigers
The Blackhawks would be flying high after their 26-0 demolition of the Edinburgh Wolves a few weeks ago was it not for the close defeat by the Gateshead Senators the week after.

However a close defeat by a team that by all accounts should be in the Premiership North this year (they requested to be lowered to the National Division) is nothing shameful and the Blackhawks should put the defeat behind them and bounce back.

The Tigers on the other hand set their mark with a dominating 36-19 opening game win over the Dundee Hurricanes. Quarterback Matt McCusker and receiver Dean Jardine will have to be closely marked as they teamed up for three touchdowns through the air on the day.

This has the potential to be a shootout in Scotland.
Clyde Valley Blackhawks to win by one score

Premiership Predictions

Premiership North
Coventry Jets vs. East Kilbride Pirates
An intriguing opener for East Kilbride, who quite rightly start the season as favorites to win the division. However, they’ve had problems in the West Midlands before – losing to Tamworth last season – and will face a tough proposition in Coventry.

With Stuart Franklin instantly upgrading the Jets offence, they look like they could be a play-off contender in 2013. With other signings rumored to be close, the improvements just keep on coming in Coventry.
On last year’s showings, this should be a comfortable win for the visitors, but the off-season changes may well have closed the gap.
Prediction: East Kilbride by two scores

Games in the PLFA this weekend

Saturday, May 4, 6PM CET (12:00 PM EST)

PLFAII: Archers Bydgoszcz vs Angels Toruń
Bydgoszcz-Toruń face off in a derby rivalry of two historically conflicting cities. The teams have competed in an exhibition game (in Inowroclaw September 2, 2012 Angels won 24-7 ), but this is first official PLFA league game. In their first game of the season the Archers won at Slupsk Griffons 22-7. The Angels are yet to play in a competitive game, however, in a preseason games the  Angels lost to the strong Lowlanders Bialystok 21-0 and won against the Warsaw Crusaders 50:6.

Sunday, May 5, 2PM CET (8:00 AM EST)

Topliga PLFA: Warsaw Eagles- Kozły Poznań
Eagles and Kozły (Goats) have the same record at 2-1 and desperately need wins. In the first game for both teams, Poznań Kozły lost to the Eagles 39-0, but after this game they bounced backed and won two games in a row against the Silesia Rebels and the Warsaw Spartans. Eagles other victory was versus the Zaglebie Steelers, but they lost a game versus the Seahawks Gdynia. In the history of Eagles-Kozły games, Warsaw have been consistent winners (8 times).

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