CFL gears up for busy month of European “Global” combines in January

The Canadian Football League (CFL) heads to Europe in January 2020 with a total of six Global combines to be held in various countries designed to showcase some of the best talent available.

The federations of Great Britain, France, Germany, Italy, Sweden, and Finland have invited athletes from their own and other countries to participate.

The calendar of events also features Global Combines in Mexico and Japan as the CFL increases the number of global players on both practice and active rosters.

The CFL Global Combines are 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 and the 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.

The month kicks off with the Finnish Combine in January featuring a total of 17 hopefuls and continues the next day in Norrköping,  Sweden as 16 athletes will showcase their skills. Quick and his crew then head back to Europe the following weekend, paying a visit to Paris, France to assess the talents of 23 young French athletes.

The final three combines are scheduled for the same busy weekend with both the Italian and British federations organizing their combines on January 25. The CFL-Italy Combine is set for Florence where a total of 22 players will participate. The British combine will feature 19 athletes and be held at the Filton Academy in Bristol. Germany will wind up the month of combines with a total of 45 athletes gathering in Frankfurt to show off their talents.

In other words, over the course of a couple of weeks, CFL scouts will be evaluating a total of 119 European athletes to assess which are good enough to be included in the CFL Combine. That’s a far cry from the 18 who were invited to the original Combine in 2019.

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. This coming season, the number of global players per team 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 Great Britain, Austria, DenmarkFranceGermanyItalyJapan, Finland, Norway, and Sweden, and is in discussions with others.



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