Guelfi Firenze move to 2–0 after thumping of Stainless Steel Warriors Emilia

Despite being deprived of their starting quarterback Andrea Fimiani, the Guelfi Firenze demolished the Stainless Steel Warriors Emilia this past weekend 34–7 and now move to 2–0 in the hope of repeating their Italian Football League (IFL) championship run last year.

Jared Gerbino, usually Guelfi’s Swiss army knife, stepped in for the injured Fimiani on Saturday and proved every bit as effective. On the very first drive of the game the Ivy League product (Dartmouth) led Firenze down the field on a 53-yard drive and capped it off with an 18-yard touchdown pass.

Guelfi managed to punch in two more scores on the two ensuing drives thanks to a blocked punt and another sustained drive. Their usually seamless offense did appear less well oiled than usual throughout the first half, but the scores kept ticking over nonetheless due to sheer speed of the offense and their ability to win one-on-one matchups.

Derek Green, the Warriors quarterback who had played remarkably well in the week prior, struggled considerably against the Guelfi. The long passes and deadly precision he displayed in their opening contest was unfortunately traded for hurried football in Florence as the Guelfi managed to sack him five times and pick him off once. 

By the end of the second quarter, Guelfi had bullied them into a 28–0 lead and seemingly sucked the life out of the Warriors

The Warriors came out of the tunnel set to receive the second-half kickoff and proceeded to put together possibly the longest non-scoring drive in IFL history. Green and his offense plodded the offense down the field on a 53-yard, 18-play drive that lasted an astonishing 10:54 minutes but failed to get into the endzone following a fourth-down sack on Guelfi’s 18-yard line.

Guelfi punched in another touchdown towards the end of the fourth quarter off a 14-yard Gerbino scramble to bring the score to 34–0. This in turn seemed to spur the Warriors on for one final pride-saving drive which saw Green put the team on his back and put together a 73-yard drive and secure the team’s only touchdown on the day.

Gerbino finished the game with 191 yards and two touchdowns through the air; and 83 yards and three touchdowns rushing. Green finished the game with 130 yards and a touchdown, a long way from his outstanding performance last week.

With star quarterback Andrea Fimani sidelined, the Guelfi will surely be pleased with their steamrolling of the Warriors, who seemed a completely different team from a week ago. For the Warriors, it will be back to the drawing board in the hope of finding a new way to obtain their first win of the season.

Daniel Mackenzie is a Press Association graduate who works in journalism and communications in the third sector. Daniel began playing football for the London Warriors and Team Great Britain and has since played across Europe.