Top moments of the ELF 2023 Season Kick-Off Press Conference

Fans, coaches, players, cheerleaders, and press gathered at Düsseldorf’s Castello Arena as the European League of Football cast of characters took turns announcing several exciting new developments for the league as the ELF’s third season is set to kick off in less than three weeks.

League commissioner Patrick Esume and CEO Zeljko Karajica discussed the league’s new sponsors (such as Pannini, EURONICS, and Fujifilm Instax), TV production upgrades, AI-generated highlights, and of course expansions franchises before going to a Q&A style with the crowd fielding questions from press and fans alike. Let’s take a look at some key takeaways from the event.

Bienvenido Madrid

The top moment of the night was of course the announcement of the league expansion to Spain’s capital Madrid. The ELF’s second Spanish franchise will be joining the league in 2024 becoming the 18th franchise. Madrid’s current teams the Las Rozas Black Demons, Osos Rivas, and Camineors Colsadas all released statements welcoming the ELF to Madrid.

Fantasy Football & Gambling

CEO Zeljko Karajica also broke the news that the league will be rolling out a fantasy football feature this season in a manager style, with 2024 planned to have a full NFL style fantasy football feature with drafts, trades, leagues and more.

Karajica also detailed how the league will be partnering with a third party to provide ELF fans with the options to gamble on games, more details will be announced soon.

Expanded TV presence

The ELF extended its contract with the German media company ProSieben, the new contract will include 30 games in the 2023 season for ProSieben throughout the season. The deal includes two live games every Sunday on ProSiebenMaxx at 1 and 4pm. The European League of Football championship game will be shown live on ProSieben’s primary channel, one of Germany’s biggest tv channels, for the first time in league history.

The TV team covering the ELF will include many of RAN’s current NFL personalities with the added wrinkle of former NFL and ELF player Kasim Edebali who joins the TV team after a six year career in the NFL and spending the last two seasons with the Hamburg Sea Devils.

Karajica also stated that the league’s game pass would be revamped working with the company Endeavour IMG, which also produced the NFL Game Pass.

Esume & Karajica Keep Expansion Rumors Hot

During the Q&A period fans lobbed Esume & co questions about the possibilities of London franchise, as well as the league’s plans of expand into Amsterdam or Scandinavia. Esume highlighted that London was a key market for the league and important to the future growth of the ELF, while adding that the league has several potential expansion candidates “cooking”.

Karajica, on the other hand, did provide some concrete promises stating that the league will announce two more expansion franchises for 2024 during the upcoming season, giving fans the nibble they need as speculations and rumors for where the next ELF team will land continue to swirl.

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