2023 Euro Cup Team Previews – Part Three

With less than a month to go until the Euro Cup, the excitement and anticipation is building for the 16 countries that will venture out to our new location in Kiel, Germany, vying for the opportunity of becoming the best country in Europe at Australian Rules Football. In an extraordinary story that will play out across the day, two countries will be looking for a four-peat – an unprecedented feat that may never be seen again. The Irish Banshees, dominant in the grand final last year, will be vying for glory again, but there will be nine other sides hungry to stop them in their tracks. In the men’s side of the draw, the England Dragonslayers will be desperate to repeat their last three contests at the Euro Cup, but 14 determined countries will be fighting for a change at the top.

As is the common approach for AFL Europe’s biggest tournaments, we love to get an insight into the build-up and preparation for the teams competing, as well as the history of these sides, and we continue our team previews with the French Gauloises, the Irish Warriors, and the German Eagles Women.

French Gauloises

The Gauloises first participated in the Euro Cup in 2013, having played it in every competition since. Mixed results have seemingly been the case, with their best result coming in Croatia in 2015 where they finished 3rd. With the French season starting in September, they have had a wonderful preparation coming into Kiel, despite having to deal with several injuries. Just recently, the Gauloises competed in a fantastic game of Aussie Rules against Australia at the Anzac Cup, losing by two goals but ‘fighting until the very last minute’. Heading into the tournament, the Gauloises are aiming to ‘display a strong team spirit on and off the pitch’, something they achieved so well at the recent Villers Bretonneux visit against Australia.


Irish Warriors

The beginning of the Warriors Euro cup journey was of one absolute success, winning in 2010 and 2011, 12 years later they are yet to taste success since. With a new side in 2022, they had an improved effort finishing 3rd, building the foundations for an assault on the trophy in 2023. After trials all over the country, a strong mix of ‘new and experienced talent’ will be featuring, ‘hoping to go one better and make the big dance’ this time around. Under ‘no illusion’ of the task at hand this year with strong competition as usual, it will be tough for the Warriors but no doubt a side full of belief and determination will be ready for what lays ahead.

German Eagles Women

Euro Cup began in fine style for the Eagles in 2018, finishing 5th after a competitive day of matches. A year later they just missed out on a grand final birth in a tight loss against England, but picked themselves up to finish 3rd. With a two year pause on the competition due to the pandemic, unfortunately they couldn’t find their 2019 form and slumped down to 5th. The German league has just began, giving players a perfect lead-up to the tournament, in tandem with two weekend training camps earlier this year. ‘To win as many games as possible’ is the main goal for the Eagles, eager to ‘make a change’ to the English and Irish dominance we have seen for ‘far too long’.



  • Sam Briggs, AFL Europe