After a long offseason, the European League of Football teams are locked and loaded to start the fourth season of exciting matchups. Season 4 will feature 17 teams in three conferences, all playing for an opportunity to win an ELF championship in 2024. This season’s ELF championship game will be held in VELTINS Arena in Gelsenkirchen, Germany, on September 22nd. There have already been 25,000 tickets sold for the fourth championship game in the European League of Football history. Week 1 of the 2024 ELF season starts Saturday, May 25th, and fans with an ELF Game Pass subscription can view games.

Several traditional powers of European football return to the ELF, including the Berlin Thunder, Vienna Vikings, Barcelona Dragons, Stuttgart Surge, Cologne Centurions, Frankfurt Galaxy, Hamburg Sea Devils, Panthers Wroclaw, Raiders Tirol, and the defending ELF champion, the Rhein Fire. Several teams, like the Fehervar Enthroners, Prague Lions, Milano Seamen, Munich Ravens, and the Paris Musketeers, are also looking to have a breakthrough season. In addition, the league welcomes the newly re-branded Helvetic Mercenaries, formerly known as the Guards and the Madrid Bravos.

Rhein Fire Strive to Win Back-to-Back Championships

During the 2023 season, the Rhein Fire entered the ELF season as the favorite to win a championship after stacking their roster with playmakers during the 2023 off-season. The Fire met expectations when they defeated the Stuttgart Surge in the 2023 championship game. This season, the Fire returned their head coach, Jim Tomsula, quarterback Jadrian Clark, and Glen Toonga at running back. They have retained their offensive and defensive coordinators.  

In the ELF, continuity in coaching staff and personnel can be challenging to maintain from one season to the next. By bringing back the nucleus of their team, the Rhein Fire have put themselves in a position to become the first team in the ELF to win back-to-back championships.

Darkhorse Championship Contender: Fehervar Enthroners

During the 2023 season, the Stuttgart Surge overcame two seasons of disappointment to become one of the best teams in the ELF. While the Surge lost to the Rhein Fire in the championship game, they are a great example of a team that has been able to surprise the league with an unexpected breakout season. In 2024, the team is primed and ready to be a breakout team in the Fehervar Enthroners of Hungary.

During the 2023 season, the Enthroners struggled to a 3-9 record. Despite the Enthroner’s poor win-loss record, the Enthroners did have an impressive defense. This offseason, the Enthroners have invested in personnel to upgrade their offense, picking up quarterback Jack Mangel and wide receiver Nathaniel Robitaille. If the Enthroners’ offense can put points on the scoreboard, Fehervar can compete for a spot in the 2024 ELF playoffs.

The Three Conferences of the ELF

The Eastern Conference of the ELF includes the Berlin Thunder, Fehervar Enthroners, Panthers Wroclaw, Prague Lions, and the Vienna Vikings. The favorite at this conference was the traditional power and former ELF champion, the Vienna Vikings. It will be interesting to see if the Enthroners or Panthers can challenge the Vikings for a conference championship.

The Central Conference of the ELF includes the Barcelona Dragons, Helvetic Mercenaries, Milano Seamen, Munich Ravens, Raiders Tirol, and the Stuttgart Surge. The favorite in this conference is the Stuttgart Surge and quarterback Reilly Hennessey, who hopes to continue building momentum from the 2023 season. Milano has made personnel moves to be a contender in the conference, and the Raiders Tirol traditionally are in a position to qualify for the playoffs.

The Western Conference of the ELF includes the Cologne Centurions, Frankfurt Galaxy, Hamburg Sea Devils, Paris Musketeers, the Rhein Fire, and the ELF newcomer Madrid Bravos. Rhein will most likely be the best team in this loaded division, but several contenders, including the Frankfurt Galaxy, could challenge them for the top spot in the conference. Paris found some success in 2023 and is looking to work its way toward the top of the Western Conference in 2024.

Follow me on X: @AaronSauter7

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Aaron Sauter
Aaron Sauter is a 23-veteran high school football coach that is also an fan of all levels of football. He is especially interested in alternative football leagues like the CFL, UFL, and IFL. Aaron enjoys analyzing innovative schemes on offense and defense during his free time.

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