WFC 2024 in Lahti – Splitter, Stats, & 3×3 Thoughts

Wow, what an intense week. felt like my former sports project,, the last ten days. So many match reports and pictures, hope you enjoyed following me. The time was quite intense, I also covered more than I initially planned. The Lahti days also taught me that I am not able to cover a full senior men or women tournament at the moment. It is simply too exhausting. Maybe I can make it to the Women WFC 2025, where two cities also mean that less is happening in the one or the other venue.

This post is about looking back to the days in Lahti and has three parts. The first part is a typical Splitter with some stories you don’t get from the pure match reports. Then, I am doing some statistics on my coverage. Unfortunately, I felt that there are some Why are you not covering our team more vibes from at least one federation. So I also was interested by myself, how the coverage spread over the different teams (U19 competition only). And finally, I have of course to share my view on the new 3×3 floorball format.


WFC 2024 in Lahti – Splitter

One Venue Fits All

Regarding the venue, Lahti has really been ideal. The A and B venue were just next to each other and even the 3×3 venue was under the same roof. That was really lovely and also lead to a major focus on the smaller teams. Apart from Finland, all major teams had to play in the B venue as well. Especially before the Sweden vs. Poland match, you saw a couple of Swedish fans desperately searching for their team.

The merchandise and food situation was really nice, which lead to a really nice situation for the spectators. It was really handy to stay in the Lahti Sports & Trade Fair Center the whole day.


Kids Day, Paw Patrol and Janne Ahonen

the organizers really did a lot to have a focus on the event. The first day was Kid’s day with school kids visiting selected matches and cheering for a team they selected. Thursday was presented as Paw Patrol day, so that the kids could meet their cartoon series heroes. There were also outdoor stands and a floorball field. On Sunday, ski jumping superstar Janne Ahonen dropped 6,000 balls down the giant ski jumping hill as a lottery event.


Media Center in the Dark

The media center, where I spent most of the time was located right behind the main stand of the main arena. It might not look too cozy, but the team of media manager Markku Huoponen did a nice job and the routes to both arenas were really short. However, the location also lead to a weird situation. For the pre-game show of the major matches, the lights in the area were switched off for the light show – which lead to a media area in the dark for a couple of minutes.


Exclusive Courtside Seating

A sponsor put a pick up truck into one corner of the A arena. While during the first days, any spectator was able to use it, while during the last days, it was reserved for guests of the company. A really nice (and comfortable) way to consume floorball.


U19 WFC 2024 in Lahti – My (Non-Top 4) All-Stars

All-Star Votings at World Floorball Championships are always a weird thing. Especially the big country media comes in a rather high number rather late in the tournament. They typically don’t cover the minor teams at all and tend to support their own players, so that the All Star Team typically includes players from Sweden, Finland, Czechia and Switzerland. And, of course, they are typically much better players than, for example, a player from Singapore. Nonetheless, I feel that these teams and individual performers are worth mentioning as well. So I do – and name some players by position I feel to look out for: There is no specific order in the entries. I did not add Polish players, simply as I just saw scattered live streams of the team.



Even though there were some very strong match performances by individual goalkeepers, I feel that this position is one of the strongest difference between the Big 4 Nationa and the remaining teams. Nonetheless, I looked out for my favorite players from the non-semifinal team. I did exclude Polish players, though, as I just haven’t seen matches of the team (see below).:

  • Hanna Szabo (Hungary)
    Even though the performance of the Hungarian goalies had a certain spread, the most memorable netminder performance of the tournament was Hanna Szabo’s performance at the 3-3 against Italy. Over 30 saves by the young Hungarian goalie. If she will have a lot of potential for the future.


  • Estere Elbrete (Latvia)
    The Latvian goalkeeper had quite a lot to do in her three matches, which sums up to over 70 saves. Even in weaker situations of her defense, Elbrete stayed cool. An overall save percentage of 89.89 % is not top notch, but a very good tournament average for a team which finished last in their group.


  • Libby Sexton (New Zealand)
    Apart from the Canadian “one-women goalie show” Amy Field, no goalie had more saves during the whole tournament than Libby Sexton. Especially in the group match against Germany and the placement battle with Hungary, Sexton was a key pillar of the play of her team.




I felt to list four defenders and six forwards in here, double the amount of players

  • Katie Wright (Australia)
    With seven goals and one assist, Katie Wright was the top scorer of the Australian team. The remarkable fact about that is: Wright is a defender. However, her “blue liners” how you would describe her distance snipes in ice hockey, were a dangerous weapon in any match of the Aussies. Great effort!


  • Trine Einberg (Norway)
    Especially the close 0-3 loss against Finland stays in mind when you think about the Norwegian performance at Lahti. Especially the first line with Einberg and Marit Lunde Wormstrand played a great match. I liked Einberg’s play a bit more.


  • Nuria Soufia Guerbouj (Germany)
    The Dümptener Füchse defender played a very solid role in the first line of the German national team. During all matches I watched live or in the stream, I enjoyed her energetic performance.


  • Emelie Blomqvist (Canada)
    The Canadian playing at Lindome IBK in Sweden was the key pillar in the her team’s play. You could feel how well her higher experience lead to a lot of stabilization in the defense of the North American team.




The forwards are always a bit more in focus than the defensive players. Here are the offensive players, which stayed in my mind the most.

  • Ashley Geusebroek (New Zealand)
    If you initially see the 1,61m tall New Zealand striker in the rink, she rather feels a bit of hidden and mousy. However, her agility, sometimes acting in a point forward-alike, always lead to confusion in the opponent’s defense. I absolutely loved to see her playing.


  • Chiara Taini (Italy)
    No player had scored more goals in the tournament than Chira Taini. Hardly any opponent made it to control the agile and dangerous player over the full distance of a match. Thus, the UHC Laupen (Switzerland) striker was an easy pick in this list of players.


  • Marta Pelliccioni (Italy)
    I also nominated another forward from Italy In contrast to Taini, Marta Pelliccioni plays in the Italian league, at the Floorball Black Lions. The tall forward (1.75 meters) was the second best Italian scorer with eight goals and three assists and felt to be dangerous throughout the game.


  • Marie Abdilgaard (Denmark)
    Two Danish strikers, Sophine Bergen Jorgensen and Marie Abdilgaard, finished in the Top 5 of the tournament scoring leaders. I felt that Abildgaard was a bit more active and more key for the play of the Danish national team. Great work.


  • Orsolya Galfi (Hungary)
    The seventeen year old captain of the Hungarian team was a true leader on court. She has a very high intelligence in the game and initiated many nice plays. I really enjoyed watching her playing.


  • Michelle Siedenberg (Germany)
    I was really impressed by the performance of young Michelle Siedenberg, when I saw her playing the first time at the German Under 15 Girls German Championships in 2022. She has impressively developed since then and was one of the leaders in the German team. A very good understand. Michelle turns 16 this year – it will be very interesting to see her in the rink in two years in Italy.




Typically, coaches and staff are not in focus of All-Stars. Nonetheless, I feel that especially for the minor countries, some individuals outside the rink are really key for the performance of their teams:

  • Sonja Hotke (Canada)
    Canada finished their campaign last in the tournament. Nonetheless, I was really impressed by them. Especially that they had a very close battle with Singapore in the Place 15 Match as their fourth match in four days was absolutely inspiring. Canada just traveled to Lahti with ten field players and one goalie. Amazing work to set up the team again and again by their head coach. Unfortunately, I have no appropriate picture of her


  • Jakob Buhrkall (Denmark)
    If you love floorball, you have to love Jakob Buhrkall. And if you are not Danish, you somehow have to be jealous of the Scandinavian team having him. Officially working as a masseur, he is much more than that. He is the motivator, good heart and good mood deliverer within the team. Nobody is caring about that his/her team is playing with a smile in their face as Jakob does.


  • Petri Tuominen (Hungary)
    The Finnish coach added to the Hungarian team’s coaching staff lead to a big impact. Especially compared to previous performances, the team had a great discipline and a clear strategy in their games. I feel that this is majorly based on the work Tuominen did with the team, even if he needed assistant coach Petra Magyar as a translator for some of the players.




U19 WFC 2024 in Lahti – Coverage Stats

As said ,on the one hand, I feel a bit urged to justify myself. On the other hand, I am also interested how many match facts or match reports per team and how many pictures I delivered. Of course, there was a certain focus on the Hungarian U19 Women team. By the way, on the final day, it was my 17th anniversary supporting them. For the picture statistics,I did not analyse the individual pictures. For example, the Place 13 match between Hungary and New Zealand had 353 pictures. I will count these 353 pictures for both teams – regardless of that some photos might just cover players from one of the teams.

I just did not make it to one of the Polish matches. I just have been too busy with other matches, sorry for that. At least I covered all other teams. Apart from Denmark, I also at least covered two matches per team, which is much more than I planned and expected. Here is the stats, sorted by the number of pictures:

Country Tag # Matches # Pics
1 Hungary Team 4 1,448
2 Switzerland Team 5 1,208
3 Sweden Team 4 1,098
4 Finland Team 4 1,073
5 Czechia 4 1,025
6 Italy 2 587
7 New Zealand 2 557
8 Australia 3 489
9 Canada 2 426
10 Slovakia 3 407
11 Denmark 1 322
12 Germany Team 2 317
13 Latvia 2 297
14 Singapore 2 276
15 Norway 2 210
16 Poland 0 0
Total 21 4,875

On top of that, there were 1,508 pictures in the four 3×3 Floorball WFC posts.


And then, there was 3×3

Many people have been skeptical about the new 3×3 Floorball format. And, as due to the rather short notice, some national federations had less usual nomnation processes, this might have increased negative thoughts. However, these two days in the 3×3 Arena have been remarkable. Not only that the matches became a meeting point for the international floorball community. Not only that we introduced new countries like Iceland or Cote d’Ivoire to the international top level WFC family. The sports was intense, there were a lot of good matches and you needed a lot more strategy and tactics than I oriignally expected. Vice versa, there were hardly any “chaotic” matches.

The format is fast and very demanding. Many teams regularly changed the goalie at halftime, because there is hardly any chance for the netminders to relax. The format supports fast and dynamic players. You need quick and precise passes and can snipe from anywhere. I expected more goals thrown by the goalkeepers. They happened, but comparably rarely. That also illustrated how well most of the teams were already prepared to the new format. Germany in the women’s competition and Latvia on the male side showed that they can be competitive with big nations. And, finally, the logistics with smaller fields and less players are a striking argument. I absolutely loved it and feel that 3×3 Floorball can play a similar role like the 3×3 format is already doing in basketball.

Some Suggestions for Adoption

Overall, I feel that the IFF did an amazing job tweaking and adjusting the rules so that 3×3 Floorball becomes a great format with a lot of action. Nonetheless, I feel that there should be some adoptions, majorly on the rules side. Here are my suggestions:

  • Some matches like the B-Final between Germany Team 2 and USA Red became very physical. There were also quite a lot of stick hits. The referees also very often did not sanction attacks to the knee or stick hits, which would have at least lead to free hits on the normal size field. We should discuss how much flow we want on the one side – and how much clean play on the other.
  • The penalty shots replacing a two minutes penalty were great. I feel that the referees should have even dared to call more of them, see point above. However, they often stopped the match for too long. They should be quicker. If the goalie is not ready after five or ten seconds, it’s a goal. If the shooter is not ready, it’s a free hit.
  • For example in the final, there was a situation with a penalty shot foul by Sweden and a match penalty, which also lead to a penalty shot (plus two minutes). I feel that if there are in the same situation penalty shots against both teams, they should both not be played. This would be in line with parallel two minute bench penalties on the normal field. In that case, you might also replace the penalty shots by two minute personal penalties, similar to the ten minute ones (i.e. neither of the teams is short handed, but the players are excluded for two minutes at least, until the next intermission).
  • A match penalty in 3×3 leads to a personal exclusion and a two minute penalty. I did not like that. If there is not a huge difference in level, the short-handed team has practically no chance to prevent a goal against themselves. Just in order to keep the flow of the game, I would not go for the bench penalty here, but instead award the other team one or two technical goals.
  • At the beginning of the tournament, there were five courts in parallel. I do understand that you don’t have speakers then. However, there should have been announcements at least in the final matches, where just two and later just the main court has been used. Especially the situation already mentioned in the men’s final lead to a lot of confusion among the spectators.


World Floorball Championships (Floorball WFC)

Here are all my postings related to the World Floorball Championships (all categories):


All “classic” blog posts

No reviews – just debating and certain topics – these are my “traditional” blog posts in the categories Just blogging, Just blogging on music and Sports Blogging:

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