The 12 teams that started the journey to the IFAF 2020 European Championship final four have been whittled down to five with one game to go this weekend.
With Sweden’s decisive win over Great Britain this past Saturday only one division remains to be settled. The final game in Division A is scheduled for November 9 when the defending champions, Team France, get set to take on Serbia in France.
The five nations that make up Group B have wound up their 2019 schedule with another five games left to be played in 2020.
In the top group, Group A, 12 teams were in a battle with the winners of each division qualified to face each other in the playoff/championship round. Seven of the 12 teams have now been eliminated from competing for the top four spots. Serbia, France, Italy, Finland and Sweden all remain with France set to host Serbia.
The second place teams in each division will be allocated to a round to decide spots 5-8 while the third place teams will face off to determine 9-12.
Division A (France, Czech Republic, Serbia): Games remaining – Serbia @France, November 9
Serbia took care of business at home against the visiting Czech Republic, shutting them out 16-0 and will now travel to France to face the French national team on November 9. Team France had to score three fourth quarter touchdowns to finally pull away from the Czech Republic, beating them 28-3 in Jihlava, Czech Republic. Serbia will now face the Czechs on October 26 while France will play host to Team Serbia on November 9.
Division B (Austria, Italy, Switzerland) – Winner: Italy
Italy has stunned the rest of Europe by winning this division, and in convincing fashion. The Italians downed Switzerland 38-0 after shocking the number two team in Europe, Team Austria, beating them 21-14 in Austria. The Austrians had rolled over Switzerland 66-0. With that, Italy moves on the elite final four and now awaits the results of the other three divisions.
Division C (Finland, Holland, Denmark): Winner: Finland
Team Finland trailed Denmark 3-0 after one quarter and then roared past the Danes to win going away this past weekend 44-3. Team Denmark had gotten by the Netherlands 22-19 after Europe #4, Finland had no trouble dispensing of Holland 55-0.The Finns have now won the group and advance to the final four in 2020.
Division D (Sweden, Russia, Great Britain): Winner: Sweden
Sweden built a 29-0 lead and ten cruised to a 36-14 victory over Great Britain to decide this division. Great Britain had had no trouble blanking the Russian national team 34-0. The Swedes had previously traveled to Russia in the first game of the group/qualification round and downed the Russians 34-7. The decisive matchup is set for November 2 when the British Lions travel to Sweden to take on Team Sweden.
Hungary, Turkey, Spain, Israel, Belgium: Games – 2019 schedule finished
Team Hungary took a stranglehold on first place in Group B with a decisive 31-7 win over Belgium while Spain defeated Team Turkey 30-25 as IFAF 2020 European Championship Group B wound up the 2019 schedule.
Team Israel won the opening game of Group B, beating the Turkish national team 27-22 in Turkey. However, they fell to Team Belgium, aka the Belgian Barbarians, 32-23. In other action, Team Hungary easily defeated Spain in their opening game, beating them 24-7 in Hungary.
Five games remain in Group B and are set for 2020. Belgium will host Turkey and travel to Spain. The Hungarian national team will hit the road against Turkey and when play host to Israel. Meanwhile, the Israelis will be away to face Hungary and then finish up their schedule at home against Team Spain.
Game 1 Belgium Turkey
Game 2 Turkey Hungary
Game 3 Hungary Israel
Game 4 Israel Spain
Game 5 Spain Belgium