More than 400 young athletes from 12 nations will converge on Grosseto this weekend as Italy hosts the 2023 IFAF European Junior Flag Football Championships from September 1 to 3.
The U17 national teams will come together in the beautiful setting of Fattoria La Principina to play for male and female titles. For the first time, a U15 tournament will feature a mixed competition for teams featuring athletes of both genders, a development that reflects flag football’s highly inclusive nature and is in line with trends for greater integration of male and female athletes in international sport.
“It’s a great pleasure to be returning to Italy with the support of our fantastic partners at FIDAF for this event, which continues to grow in numbers and competitiveness year-on-year,” said IFAF President Pierre Trochet. “It promises to be an unmissable event in a year when IFAF’s global flag football calendar sees significant expansion.”
Two weeks after Germany and Great Britain were crowned the sport’s adult continental champions at the University of Limerick in Ireland, junior teams from Austria, Czechia, Finland, France, Germany, Great Britain, Israel, Italy, Netherlands, Serbia, Slovakia, and Ukraine will compete in Tuscany. The Italian U17 boys’ and girls’ teams will defend titles won in Grosseto two years ago.
Games played on Field 1, including the medal rounds and championship games, will be streamed live on IFAF.TV. Scores and group placements for all age groups can be found at the tournament website: https://italia.fidaf.org/eyffc2023/
“We are happy and proud to host another continental event in our country,” said Leoluca Orlando, President of FIDAF. “Italy is now a recognized global excellence in this discipline, and for our young athletes, defending the European title at home will be electrifying.
“I thank IFAF for the trust given to the federation I represent, and furthermore, I would like to express our gratitude on behalf of FIDAF to the Italian Minister of Sports, Andrea Abodi, for his attention to our federation in this significant context.”
The President of the Italian Olympic Committee (CONI), Giovanni Malagò, said: “I am very pleased to see Italy once again assigned an international event of this level. I congratulate FIDAF for the great work they continue to do to promote flag football, one of the fastest-growing disciplines in the world, with exciting prospects for the future.”
Grosseto’s Mayor Antonfrancesco Vivarelli Colonna said: “Once again, this great sport returns to the city. It is a tremendous pleasure for us to welcome international athletes who will once again populate Grosseto, a city that reaffirms its leadership in sports this year as well.”
Sports Councilor, Fabrizio Rossi added: “As administrators, we have always worked to improve sports facilities and the territory’s attractiveness. It will be a privilege for us to have these talented young athletes among us.