Costa Rican American Football: Dispelling the Confusion & Welcoming the New

Since the inception of ‘organized’ American football in Costa Rica in 2009, the sport has seen its fair share of growing pains.

This is an attempt to dispel the confusion about the history of the leagues in Costa Rica and describe the two functioning leagues which currently operate in this Central American country.

LOGO FEFACR webInitially the 1st Division teams were organized into the private FCFA: Costa Rican Federation of American Football (2009-2010). (Super Tazon I & II)

Then, when the FEFACR: Federación de Fútbol Americano de Costa Rica (IFAF member league registered in 2009) achieved recognition by induction into the ICODER: Costa Rican Institute of Sports & Recreation, it hosted the first ‘official’ National Championship in 2011 for 1st Division teams, and again in the following two consecutive years. (Super Tazon III, IV & V)

The private American Football Premier Division League (AFPDL) was in essence a cooperative league formed at the beginning of 2014 by the 1st Division teams of 2013. The league hosted its own Championship calendar in 2014 and disbanded shortly after the Championship. (Super Tazon VI)

NEW NTFL LogoAfter the disbandment of the AFPDL, 2015 saw the establishment of the private NTFL: National Tico Football League that had started to take form towards the end of 2014 with the majority of the 1st Division teams under its banner. The league, with five teams, is well underway playing its 1st Championship calendar that commenced on February 8th, and is set to introduce a ‘new’ Championship title on May 3rd.

Now turning our attention back to the FEFACR league, it just kicked off the 2015 National Championship 1st Division calendar on February 28th, boasting two original teams since the sport was organized in Costa Rica, and two new fledgling teams.

Read the time line here for the history of American football in Costa Rica from the mid-90’s to 2012.

FEFACR: Federación de Fútbol Americano de Costa Rica 


The four teams associated with the 2015 FEFACR: (Click to visit Facebook profiles.)

NTFL: National Tico Football League

NTFL 2015 Updated Calendar

The 5 teams associated with the 2015 NTFL: (Click to visit Facebook profiles.)

Ms Elle has a career in corporate communication and branding, spanning four continents over 25 years, with recent years pursuing sports marketing and media. She is currently living in Costa Rica and assists with the promotion of American football in