Europe American Football

European Championships

The first American Football European Championships were held in 1983, at Vince Lombardi Stadium, Castelgiorgio, Italy. Italy beat Finland 18-6 in the Final.

AFEF European Championships (Editions): 1983

EFL European Championships (Editions): 1987 1989

EFAF European Championships A-Group (Editions): Malmö 2005

EFAF European Championships B-Group (Editions): Amiens-Picardie 2004 Wolfsberg-Kärnten 2009

EFAF European Championships C-Group (Editions): Cophenhagen 2003 Wolfsberg-Kärnten 2007

National Football League International & Development Leagues (Major & AAA – Levels 0 & 1):

After the US Air Force & Army Leagues, the National Football League set about promoting the NFL in Europe. In 1970 the film M*A*S*H saw the first mainstream exposure of American Football in Europe with its climactic Football game at the end. Immediately following this there were expressions of interest from Europeans about setting up a League, and what followed was the Intercontinental Football League, which was to feature 6 teams, including the Rome Gladiators, owned by Bruno Beneck, the director of the most popular TV Sports Show in Italy, who had successfully introduced Baseball 20 years earlier. The League never got off the ground due to the oil crisis and the spectre of Terrorism, but the IFL continued to promote the game, playing a game in 1972 in Paris featuring NFL players, as well as bringing College teams and Semi-Pro Teams from 1976-1978 to play a best-of-5 European Championship.

TV stations started showing American Football in the late-1970s and early 1980s and the first Leagues sprang up, including the Rome Gladiators in Bruno Beneck’s Italy. By 1986 the National Football League had begun to play Pre-Season games in London, Barcelona, Berlin and Dublin. The European audiences soon wanted more so the World League of American Football, featuring 3 European teams, 6 American and one Canadian, was started in 1991. It lasted two seasons before being shelved by the NFL due to the lack of interest from American fans in a Development League. The American Football League of Europe, which ran from 1994-1995 filled in the gap in Pro Football, with its mix of start-up teams and teams from the European National Leagues bolstered by American imports.

The World League returned in 1995 as a 6-team Europe-only League and was renamed the NFL Europe League in 1998. After initial success, attendances dwindled – the fans wanted an NFL franchise – so in 2007 the NFL folded the League and focused on promoting the NFL in Europe through the NFL International Series – starting with one NFL Regular Season game a year played in London, growing to 4-per-year by 2020, with the stated intention of putting a team in London permanently by 2022.

US Pro Leagues in Europe (Major League):

National Football League International | Regular Season Games in London 2007-Present

National Football League | American Bowl Pre-Season Games in Europe 1986-1997

United States Football League | Postseason Exhibition Game in London 1984

National Football League Intercontinental 1972-1978

European & International Pro & Semi-Pro Weekly Football Leagues (Level 0):

Amsterdam Crusaders Independent Schedule American Football Team 2018

Central European Football League 2006-2016

National Football League Europe 1998-2007

World League of American Football 1995-1997

American Football League of Europe 1993-1995

Hamburg Devils Independent Schedule American Football Team 1993

World League of American Football 1991-1992

International League of American Football 1990

Proposed American Football League in USSR 1979

Northern Italian Football League 1976-1986

Intercontinental Football League European Championship 1976-1978

Intercontinental Football League 1974-1975

American Football League of Europe (Seasons): 1995

European League of American Football (Seasons): 1993

Intercontinental Football League European Championship (Seasons): 1978 1977 1976

European Football Associations & the Eurobowl (AAA Level 1 & AA Level 2)

The first Eurobowl for European National Champions was played in 1986, governed by the European Football League. The organisation fell apart in 1992, following the expulsion of the United Kingdom, and was replaced by the European Federation of American Football which ran the Eurobowl until 2015 when the German Football League International took over running the sport for one year, being replaced in turn by the Europe Division of the International Federation of American Football, the World Governing Body.

Eurobowl Finals:

European Federation of American Football Europe Eurobowl 1986-Present

European American Football Level 1 Overviews (Eurobowl):

International Federation of American Football Europe Big 6 Eurobowl 2015-present

European Football League Eurobowl (Level 1): 1986 1988 1989 1990 1991 1992 1993

European Federation of American Football Eurobowl (Level 1): 1994

IFAF Europe European Football League (Level 2): 2015 2016

Western Europe (A Level 3):

There has been Regional Tournaments in Western Europe since the Four Nations Bowl (England, Ireland, Scotland & Wales) in the 1990s and then the Charleroi Trophy (Belgium, Netherlands, Ireland) in the early 2000s. This was replaced by the Atlantic Cup in 2009, which ran until 2017 when the Belgian & Dutch Champions made the step up to European Football League Level.

Western European Club Championships (Level 3) (Overviews):

European Federation of American Football Charleroi Trophy Finals 2002-2004

European Federation of American Football IFAF Europe Atlantic Cup Finals 2009-2017

Western European Friendlies (Seasons): 1986

Four Nations Bowl (Seasons): 1992

Charleroi Trophy: (Seasons) 2002 2003 2004

Atlantic Cup (Seasons): 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017

Northern Europe (A Level 3):

The Scandinavian Cup, played in the 1990s between the winners of the Swedish, Norwegian, Danish & Finnish Leagues, is the oldest of the Northern European Regional Tournaments. It has since been replaced by the Northern European Football League, featuring the British Champions too.

Nothern European Friendlies (Level 3): 1986

EFL Scandinavian Cup (Level 3): 1987 1988 1989 1993 1994 1995

IFAFE Northern European Football League (Level 3): 2017 2018

Central Europe (A levels 3 & 4):

Central European Competitions have included the Challenge Cup (EFAF Era) and more recently the Central European Football League. These competitons have pitted the Champions of – at times – Austria, Czech Republic, Poland, Slovakia, Hungary, Serbia, Croatia, Romania, Bulgaria and Turkey – against each other in two levels as it currently stands.

Central European Football League Bowl (A level 3): 2018

Central European Football League Cup (A- level 4) 2018

International Friendlies

Slovakia International American Football Matches 2010-Present

International American Football USSR 1989

National Leagues

The earliest National Leagues in Europe were the ones in Italy (1977), Germany (1979) and Finland (1979) and have since grown to include just about every Country in Europe.

National Bowl Games:

EFAF National Bowl Games (Seasons): 1994 1995

EFAF AMPRO European Top 20 (end-of-season Rankings): 1995

Celtic & West European National Leagues

Ireland (AFI):

As this is an Irish Sports Archive there is much more on American Football Ireland covered, so Ireland has its own page at: American Football Ireland

Britain (BAFA)

Britain: Level 1:

British American Football Association Britbowl Finals 1985-Present

British American Football Merit League (Seasons): 1984

Britain Level 2:

British American Football Non-Merit Table (Seasons): 1984

Britain: 5th Level:

British Gridiron Football League 1987-1988

Britain: British Colleges & Universities Football:

British Collegiate American Football League 1985-1990

British Collegiate American Football League 1990-1994

Britain: Women’s

British American Football Association Women’s Sapphire Series Division 1 2017-2019

British: Youth Kitted

British Youth American Football Association Kitted League 1991

England

English Regional Leagues

North England: Yorkshire Rose Winter League (Seasons): 1993

North England Friendlies (Seasons): 1994

Midlands: West Bromwich Sevens Tournament (Seasons): 1993

Home Counties: Home Counties Friendlies (Seasons): 1993

South England: Christine Crawley Charity Cup (Seasons): 1993

West Country: Oxford Passball Tournament (Seasons): 1993

English Senior Flag Football

English Senior Flag League 9v9 Senior Championship 2003-2005

British Senior Flag League 9v9 Senior Championship 1998-2002

English Junior Flag Football

Junior Gridiron League Youth League (14-18 y.o.) (Seasons):1994 1995

Youth Flag Football (South East England) (Seasons): 1993

Junior Gridiron League Junior League (9-15 yo) (Seasons): 1995

English Youth Two Touch Football

Junior American Football League (Britain) 1988

Junior Gridiron League Youth Two Touch League (South England) (Seasons): 1993

Junior Gridiron League Junior Two Touch League (South Britain) (Seasons): 1993

Northern Junior Gridiron League Two Touch (North England) (Seasons): 1993 1994

Brittania (NPL)

National Passball League

National Passball League (Britannia) 1988-1993

National Passball League (Seasons): 1988 1991 1992 1993

Scotland (SGA)

Scottish American Football Leagues

Caledonian Thistle American Football League 1987-1988

Scottish Gridiron Association Bowl Finals 1995-1998

Scottish American Football Capital Bowl 1986-1990

Capital Bowl (Seasons): 1990 1989

Scottish Flag Football Leagues

Scottish Flag Football Friendlies 1993-94

Scottish Flag Football Association Senior 2003-2007

Wales

North West & Welsh Counties American Football League 1987

Wales Friendlies (Seasons): 1993

Brittany (Conf’Ouest)

Conference Ouest (Brittany American Football) 1997-2005

Galicia (AGFA)

Liga Gallega de Futbol Americano (Galicia) 2012-2016

North European & Scandinavian National Leagues

Germany (AfvD)

AFVD American Football Verband Deutschland German Bowl 1979-Present

German Football League (Seasons): 1993

Austria (FA, AFBOe)

Football Austrian (AFBOe) Austrian Bowl 1984-Present

Switzerland (SAFV):

SAFV Swiss American Football Federation Nationalliga A 1986-1990

Benelux (Big Five)

Benelux Big Five Division (seasons): 1999

Belgium (BAFL):

Belgian American Football League | Elite Division 2017

Flanders (FAFL)

Flemish American Football League | Division II 2016

Netherlands (AFBN)

AFBN Eredivie (Seasons): 2018

Denmark (DAFF):

Dansk Amerikansk Fodbold Forbund (Denmark) Mermaid Bowl 1988-Present

Finland (SAJL):

Finnish American Football Association Men’s League (Seasons): 2020 2018 1980

Iceland

Icelandic American Football (Reykjavik Einherjar) 2016-2019

Reykjavik Einherjar (Seasons): 2018-19 2017-18 2016-17

Norway (NAIF)

Norwegian American Football Federation 1st Division 1991-2000

Southern European National Leagues

Italy (FIFA):

Federazione Italiana Football Americano 1977

Lega Italiana Football Americano 1980-1981

FIAF Federazione Italiana American Football Golden League 1998-2000

France (FFFA)

France: (FFFA):

FFFA French American Football Federation Division 1 2000-2010

Spain (FEFA)

Federacion Espanola de Futbol Americano LNFA Serie A Finals 1995-Present

Federation Espana de Football Americano LNFA Series (Spain) A 2017-2018

Portugal (FPFA):

Liga Portuguesa de Futebol Americano (Seasons): 2020

Campeonato Nacional (Seasons): 2019

Catalonia (CLAF)

Catalan League of American Football (Seasons): 1995

Central & East European National Leagues

Poland (PLAF):

Polish League of American Football 2006-2010

Slovakia (SAAF)

Slovak Football League Champions 2010-2017

Slovak Football League (Seasons): 2017