LIVESTREAM FINLAND: Wasa Royals @ Helsinki Roosters, August 19, 17:30 CET (5:30 pm, 11:30 am ET)

The Helsinki Roosters (5-1) will host the Wasa Royals (1-6) in this week-nine matchup of Finnish Maple League football.

Today’s Thursday night game features two teams at different ends of the standings looking to finish the regular season strong. For the Royals, this is their final game of the season. Helsinki on the other hand has one more game in addition to today’s matchup – against Seinäjoki – before heading into post-season play.

The Roosters dominated their crosstown rivals the Wolverines last week 42-8. New addition Mike Gentili showed off his speed and vision running for 92 yards and a touchdown in his return to Finland’s capital city. However, the standout of last week’s game was another running back, Andres Lindley. Lindley ran for 122 yards and two touchdowns as the Roosters cruised to an easy victory. In the passing game quarterback, Miro Kadmiry leads the league in touchdown passes and yards per game. The homegrown passer will look to continue his success today against a Wasa defense that has struggled at times this season.

Wasa Royals @ Helsinki Roosters, August 19, 17:30 CET (5:30 pm, 11:30 am ET)

The Roosters defense features some phenomenal Finnish talent. From young standouts such as Viljo Lempinen to seasoned veterans like linebacker Sanntu Ayravainen and defensive end Okko Outinen, this group has impressed all season. on the back end, Lorenzo Melchiore’s athleticism at the safety position and dangerous kick return skills make him one of the most exciting players to watch in Finland.

The Wasa Royals lost a heartbreaker last week to the UNC Crusaders 28-24. The loss puts them at the bottom of the standings and potentially facing relegation. The proud Wasa club has played in Finland’s top league consecutively since 2016. However, with a surging Tampere Saints team and talented Kotka Eagles squad seen as favorites in Finland’s first division, it’s possible we see a 2022 Maple League without the Royals unless they pull off the upset today.

Wasa’s offense features quarterback Brandon Gwinner and receiver  Tommy KaczochaKaczocha is a dynamic athlete who has played in all three phases for the Royals this season. His impact as a safety, receiver, and kick returner for this Royals club cannot be understated, providing a spark whenever the team needs it. German receiver Jan Hochschild has come on as of late catching four passes for 117 yards and a touchdown last week. Young Nico Barrow combines with the athletic Gwinner to give the Royals a run game that can move the chains.

Sam Dickey of Kenyon College (NCAA D3) leads this Wasa team on defense racking up 51.5 tackles on the season. At the line of scrimmage, Ray Lima is a player to watch as the former Miami Dolphins defensive lineman has been able to stuff the opponent’s run game at times. In the secondary, young safety Peter Lundström has made 19 tackles and an interception in six games this season. Expect Lundström to step up to the challenge and play well against a well-coached Rosters passing attack.

This Thursday night matchup gives the Roosters another chance to build chemistry as their team has suffered multiple injuries and brought in new talent in the last couple of months. For Wasa, they look to finish the season on a high note as they face an uncertain future in Finland’s top league.

Watch the game live here: Wasa Royals @ Helsinki Roosters, August 19, 17:30 CET (5:30 pm, 11:30 am ET)

Helsinki Roosters Depth/roster

Wasa Royals Depth/roster

Alex is a former professional American football player who is now studying in London. His goal writing for AFI is to stay involved with the game that has given him so much. Alex enjoys covering leagues and players and sharing different football