IFL Week 11 Preview: Milano can clinch playoff spot, Parma aiming higher

The penultimate week of the Italian Football League (IFL) is upon us and the top of the table is getting crowded. More than one team will decide their playoff fate with a win or a loss this weekend.

Parma Panthers (5–1) – Verona Mastini (0–6)

The Panthers are currently the hottest team in the league but sitting at number two due to a poor start to the year. Their defense has been phenomenal, and it would take a miracle for Mastini to pull one out of the hat here as the lowest ranked team in the league.

Milano Rhinos (4–2) – Firenze Guelfi (6–1)

The Rhinos were one of the hottest teams starting this year but fell off significantly after losing their starting quarterback. They attempted to replace him with a European quarterback but had little success. They are not leading with Italian quarterback Raven Ines who has performed admirably. This will be the Rhinos first game in nearly a month.

Across from them will be the Guelfi Firenze who have had quarterback troubles of their own with Andrea Fimiani going down in week one – and returning two weeks ago – and Jared Gerbino going down three weeks ago. Both are expected to be fit for the playoffs.

Despite the last few rocky months for the Rhinos, they are in prime position to clinch a playoff spot sitting at number four in the league. But to do this they will need to beat on paper one of the best teams in the league.

Ancona Dolphins (5–2) – Emilia Stainless Steel Warriors (0–5)

Ancona has now lost to both Guelfi and Parma. They are still a playoff contender but need to find a way to get over the hump and show up against big teams if they want to feature in the Italian Bowl

The Dolphins will undoubtedly get the win against the Warriors this week, but they must now start preparing for playoff football.

Lazio Ducks (2–4) – Legnano Frogs (3–3)

This may be the game of the week with both sides featuring electric quarterbacks and the Frogs desperately chasing a playoff spot in their first year in the IFL.

Ducks quarterback Austin Albericci is currently the frontrunner for league MVP with some excellent stats (1,675 yds passing, 17 TDs). It is just a shame that his defense has been the polar opposite of this and opened the gates to every and anyone.

Frogs quarterback Eystin Salum has also proven to be an explosive splash player who can score from anywhere on the field. The two may end up going blow for blow to decide this one.

But for the Frogs, this win will be crucial. If they can capture the victory, they will be in an excellent position in their final game of the season to almost certainly secure a playoff victory.

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.