LIVESTREAM FINLAND: Wasa Royals @ United Newland Crusaders, August 13, 17:30 CET (5:30 pm, 11:30 am ET)

The United Newland Crusaders (0-5) will host the Wasa Royals (1-5) in this Friday night Maple League matchup in Finland.

The Royals are eager to bounce back from a tough overtime loss in Helsinki two weeks ago and earn a win against an equally struggling team. Across the field, the Crusaders are looking to win their first Maple League game in team history after a series of tough losses in their first season in Finland’s top league. Today’s game is vital as neither team wants to be relegated back to Finland’s first division a win today by either team helps their chances mightily of securing their spot in the Maple League for 2022.

The Crusaders will roll out some new talent this week as Nolan Corpening and Zoltan Golita will arrive to bolster this secondary. Golita is a young defensive back flying to Finland after a phenomenal season with the Budapest Cowbells in the Hungarian Football League. Copening should play all over the field after excelling as a receiver, returner, and defensive back with the Prague Black Panthers. Corpening’s teammate from Prague Markek Danik is set to help the Crusaders pass rush as a defensive end. It will be interesting to see how the new talent blends with defenders Finn Kearns, Karri Salonen, and Michael Hall.

Wasa Royals @ United Newland Crusaders, August 13, 17:30 CET (5:30 pm, 11:30 am ET)

The Crusader’s offense will also have some new faces as veteran quarterback Robert Johnson will be throwing to his younger brother, Cedric Johnson. The duo of Finnish football veterans should be able to play well together as the two showed their family chemistry connecting with each other time and time again as teammates back in 2019. However, running back Kam Harris has been the Crusader’s best weapon, putting up 778 total yards in five games. Harris is a powerful back with soft hands who will be a problem for this Royals defense.

The Royals lost a heartbreaker in overtime in their last outing as Tommy Kaczocha caught a juggling touchdown to force extra time. If the Royals had executed on special teams, they could’ve left Helsinki with a win. Ultimately a missed extra point and blocked field goal were likely the difference. Quarterback Brandon Gwinner will look to get the Wasa offense going against a Crusader’s secondary shuffling personnel.  Defensively coach John Booker’s club aims to slow down Kam Harris and a physical Crusaders running game. Expect Victor Manty and Sam Dickey to be flying to the ball in an effort to slow down the 220 lb running back. Defensive lineman Ray lima must be able to dominate in the trenches as this game is very important to a proud Wasa club.

The Crusaders used the bye week to redesign their team adding talented players from three different counties. Their new talent will have to fall into place quickly as the end regular season looms closer and closer. Wasa on the other hand is excited to hit the field again and continue to build around their young domestic talent.

Watch the game here: Wasa Royals @ United Newland Crusaders, August 13, 17:30 CET (5:30 pm, 11:30 am ET)

United Newland Crusaders Depth/Roster

Wasa Royals Depth/Roster

Alex is a former NCAA and semi-pro American football player who is now located in London, where he works in digital marketing. His goal in writing for AFI is to stay involved with the game that has given him so much. Alex enjoys covering leagues and