Italy: Battle of unbeatens highlights 4th weekend of play

This weekend, the Italian Football League (IFL) will enter its fourth week. As teams start to establish themselves as front-runners, key matchups, such as the Lazio Ducks and Ancona Dolphins, are beginning to appear and possibly act as a preview to the playoffs.

Ducks Lazio (1–0) @ Dolphins Ancona (1–0) 

Despite only playing one game each, both the Dolphins and the Ducks have established themselves as front runners already. The Dolphins are currently sporting the number one scoring defense in the league, and the Ducks the number one offense. 

The Dolphins manhandled the Frogs Legnano in their opening appearance. Along with the Dolphins three interceptions, American import Vincent Winey proved to be a menace on both sides of the ball, and will likely be the same this week.

The Ducks played a far tougher opponent in their opening performance, but offered a slightly less convincing win. The key to their success was newly acquired quarterback, Austin Albericci who rushed for 122 yards and a touchdown, and threw for 215 yards and three touchdowns.

Guelfi Firenze (2–0) @ Frogs Legnano (0–1) 

It is hard to imagine the Frogs walking away from this one with a shock victory. Despite losing star quarterback Andrea Fimiani, the Guelfi have been on a roll, obliterating every opponent they’ve faced. 

The Frogs on the other hand struggled significantly in their first outing, totaling just 250 yards and a touchdown on offense and giving up 360 yards and five touchdowns on defense. The Frogs‘ have undergone significant growing pains after being promoted to Italy’s top division. If they hope to be around next year, they need to change things fast. It’s just unfortunate that they have to face the league’s best team today.

Panthers Parma (0–1) @ Stainless Steel Warriors Emilia (0–2)

The Warriors have been a surprise this year. After the amalgamation of two mid-table IFL teams last year, the hopes were high for the Warriors. Their opening game looked promising despite the loss, but last week’s battering at the hands of the Guelfi showed that the team is not where it should be.

This week they will go up against a reeling Panthers team who has since fallen from grace. Just two years ago they went undefeated and hoisted the Italian Bowl. Last week, the side from Parma were unable to prevent a comeback victory from the Milano Rhinos. This may be a make or break game for two underperforming sides.

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.