Starting in spring 2023, F-liiga will introduce a new F-liiga Draft system that allows its clubs to pick foreign players younger than 23 years of age. F-liiga men will be the first to try the new system named Floorball Talent Hunt as for F-liiga women’s teams it will start in 2024.

In spring 2023, F-liiga Draft will include three draft rounds where each club will get to pick the names of three foreign players. The date for the first ever F-liiga Draft is set at 17th May in connection with the annual F-liiga gala night.

As expected, the two teams having only secured their F-liiga places in relegation, will get the first draft picks with the club placed last starting. From there on, each club will have their turn with F-liiga champions having the last pick.

—As the world’s best floorball league, F-liiga aims to make it even easier for talented foreign players to find their way to Finland, F-liiga CEO Kimmo Nurminen says and continues:

—For a young player, playing for a F-liiga team means not just being a part of the world’s best floorball but also being able to combine studies and developing oneself in a top-class environment which is extremely important as well.

All players picked must be of legal adult age. Each F-liiga club is committed to contact the players they have picked and publish their picks fully using their own media channels.

— Our legal counsels at Eversheds Sutherland law firm will finetune all legal details with us and the rest of all arrangements to be set in co-operation with the F-liiga clubs, Nurminen adds.

F-liiga clubs, too, are excited about the news.

—It’s quite an exciting development for the whole sport, SPV manager Tommy Koponen says.

—I believe this also helps the smaller floorball nations to improve and our club certainly wants to be a part of offering young talent an opportunity to experience F-liiga floorball. For quite a while now, it has been our dream to have a top player from abroad playing for SPV.

Latvian national team player Morics Krumins has played for last season’s F-liiga finalists Nokian KrP since 2014 and he does not hesitate to put up a good word for what he has seen.

—It has been quite an adventure for me and I have greatly enjoyed every one of my Finnish seasons. It gives me great motivation to show my best in the world’s best league where all arrangements have been taken care of at a professional level, Krumins says.

—Floorball in Finland is really fast. Every game here is different from the one before and this is a league where tight games are decided by tactical details.

So why is F-liiga a good choice for a young player?

—Finland and F-liiga are excellent choices to develop oneself as a player. Also, studying here is free which means you can both educate yourself and play top level floorball. That is quite a combination, Krumins says.

Q&A with F-liiga CEO Kimmo Nurminen:

Why does F-liiga want to draft foreign players?

—It is our strategy to be the world’s leading floorball league with the highest commercial value and that’s where international attention is an important factor. We want to offer young foreign talent an opportunity to develop here assisted by the world’s best floorball coaching and to make F-liiga more international. We are working to make F-liiga where you want to play to be a part of the world’s leading floorball league.

Is it a realistic goal to become a F-liiga player if you come from a small floorball country?

—This new concept will improve F-liiga clubs’ scouting and make it more efficient. I believe the most potential players will be found regardless of which league they now play in.

How will F-liiga Draft support the international goals that F-liiga has?

—Having players from more countries in our teams’ rosters is an important part of being the world’s most interesting league with the highest commercial value. It is likely that fans from around the world will develop a greater interest in F-liiga when it has players from many countries. We have already launched our own F-liigaTV that makes it possible to watch the games anywhere in the world.

When will the final details of F-liiga Draft be available?

—It is our goal to have the contract with our clubs ready by the end of the regular season. That means we will be able to come out with all essential information before it is time for the Floorball Talent Hunt.

Is it possible to enter F-liiga if you have not been picked in the F-liiga Draft?

—The concept we are now publishing only targets young talent and certain age groups so the number of players to be picked will be limited. Naturally, more experienced players who do not belong these age groups are also warmly welcome to play in F-liiga and I believe our clubs will be more active scouting them as well.

 

More info:
Kimmo Nurminen
CEO of F-liiga
+358 45 2760168
kimmo.nurminen@salibandy.fi

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