17 players to showcase their skills at CFL-Finland Combine

The Finnish American Football Federation, SAJL, has announced the names of the 17 athletes taking part in the historic CFL-Finland Combine scheduled for January 11 at Myyrmäen Jalkapallohalli in Vantaa, Finland.

Besides Finnish players, the Combine in Finland will also feature athletes from Hungary, Russia, and Latvia.

The Finnish combine is the first in a series of CFL Global Combines to be held throughout Europe, Mexico, and Japan and designed to assess and measure the size, speed, athletic ability and football skills of top players from outside Canada and the United States who have aspirations of playing professionally in Canada.

The international combines will be attended by representatives of the CFL league office along with the new Director of Global Scouting, Greg Quick.

The top players will be invited to Toronto from March 26-28 for the 2020 CFL Combine which will feature international prospects competing alongside their young Canadian counterparts from U SPORTS, the NCAA and junior football. The league’s biggest scouting event will be followed by two separate drafts in the spring – one for global players and one for Canadians.

In 2019, the CFL featured designated ‘global players’ from countries outside the U.S. and Canada on its nine member clubs – a first for the league. Next season, the number of global players per team (on game and practice rosters) will grow from up to three to as many as five.

As the CFL continues to deepen its international footprint and introduce new pathways for Canadians to play, it has also partnered with the leading gridiron football federations and leagues in AustriaDenmark, FinlandFranceGermanyItalyJapanNorway, Great Britain, and Sweden, and discussions with other federations are ongoing.

One of the biggest names taking part in the Finnish Combine is former University of Colorado defensive lineman Chris Mulumba, who was also invited to NFL International Player Pathway Program. Other attendees include Eastern Michigan defensive lineman Ville Valasti as well as German Football League players Micky Kyei and Sebastien Sagne.

Finland’s Maple League is well represented in other combines with Helsinki Roosters offensive lineman Aleksandar Milanovic (AUT) taking part in the Italian combine while five former Maple League players will take part in the Combine in France.

List of athletes attending the CFL-Finland Combine

Last nameFirst namePositionNationalityTeam
BergChristerDLFinnishHelsinki Roosters
BraunsKarlisDLLatvianHildesheim Invaders
KantonenNiklasTEFinnishU Prime Athlete
KhalifaRufailDBFinnish Wasa Royals
KyeiMickyWRFinnishNew Yorker Lions
LahtiJereOLFinnishHelsinki Roosters
LehtonenTuukkaRBFinnishTampere Saints
LempinenViljoDBFinnish Helsinki Roosters
MulumbaChrisDLFinnishUniversity of Colorado

AkseliOlinLB,DB,KFinnishHelsinki Roosters
OutinenOkkuDLFinnishHelsinki Roosters
PajarinenKarriRBFinnishHelsinki Roosters
SagneSebastienWRFinnishFrankfurt Universe
ShakurovIliaDLRussianSaint Petersburg Griffins

StadlerDanielDLHungarianMiskolc Steelers

ValastiVilleDLFinnishEastern Michigan

VäänänenHenriQBFinnishHelsinki Roosters
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