Team Yankee European World Series - Milan 2023

Team Yankee European World Series - Milan 2023
With Paolo Paglianti

Almost one year ago, our friend Thrun Last contacted Livio Tonazzo and me: they were organizing the European Team Yankee tournament. Two days of games battling with Leopards, T72s and Harriers – how we could say no? Challenge accepted!

The first step was to choose the weekend. Cornaredo, my hometown, is a perfect spot for international tournaments as it is between Milan and Malpensa Airport: very easy to get here from every corner of Europe, with lots of cheap flights from major cities.

For the same reason, the new “Milan Fair” is very close to Cornaredo, and I needed to find a gap in the almost endless series of shows and fashion weeks, to avoid the spike in hotel costs. The 27-28th of May was one of the few weekends without huge shows and was an immediate choice. Also, May is typically warm but not damned hot, so players could come with partners and families.

After that, we need to spread the word with a website. I already had some experience with WordPress, so it was just fun and easy to build the site. I also used the same layout for the other big tournament I was organizing for the first half of 2023, the ITC DBMM. You can check the two websites, just changing the “theme” of the images they seem different and true “medieval” or “80ies” look. For Team Yankee, I used 80ies famous images, both in the world and in Italy: everybody should recognize the A-Team photo, but probably only Italians and soccer fans can do with the “prize” one. I already gave some hints on how to build the Facebook page, very good to let the International community about the tournament.

Team Yankee European World Series - Milan 2023

The tournament hall. Plenty of space, and with movable sides to fight the Milanese “Afa”, that hot summer weather.

Initially, the tournament should be only Team Yankee. However, Livio and I understood around March that we couldn’t get to 20+ players only for Team Yankee. At the same time, the Milan Club players – almost none of them playing Team Yankee – asked for a FOW tournament, so we doubled it. Since this year ETC will be Mid war, we used the same rules and period to train a bit more on the road to the European Team Championship. For both tournaments, we would use the latest More Missions PDF, with “experimental missions” – we only banned the ones with “Strategical Withdrawal” from the FOW tournament, as they usually are too long for a 2.5-hour games tournament.

Team Yankee European World Series - Milan 2023

Every player got a Battlefront Official 2023 Objective (FOW or Team Yankee), a turn counter with a small 6mm painted tank, some dice WW3 again from Battlefront, and a Slitherine games coupon for 30$. 

Team Yankee European World Series - Milan 2023
A throng of goodies was received from our friends from Battlefront, who seriously supported our tournament. Thanks a lot!
Team Yankee European World Series - Milan 2023
Team Yankee prizes from Blitzmins, they sent us a big box of prizes!
Team Yankee European World Series - Milan 2023
And the FOW prizes from Tabletopper guys, so nice to send a full box of British and German troops. They have also got recently the full Vietnam BF range, BTW. 
Then, the prize support. We had two fantastic shops that helped us with marvellous prizes, and Blitzmins. The first one provided the prize for the FOW tournament, and the second for the Team Yankee ones. Battlefront was so kind to send us a box full of official 2023 Objectives for TY and FOW, a shower of dice, and a special prize: a magnificent Salvo template and rulers. Slitherine, the videogame publisher where I’m honoured to work, offered a free 30$ coupon to buy any game from its catalogue.
Team Yankee European World Series - Milan 2023
I always try to have a painted “prize” for every player, as I love the idea of all players taking something home, to keep on their tin soldiers shelf to remember the experience. This time, I 3D printed and painted small tanks on turn counters. 

The players

We had 12 players for Team Yankee Worlds Series and 14 for Flames of War, for a total of 26. Not bad!

For Flames of War, we had basically two tournaments on two days. Most Italian players want a single-day tournament, to have the Sunday free for rest or family business. However, the ones who wanted to do a full weekend had a second day of Games with a second prize given in the evening. The Saturday tournament was the “official” tournament, valid for the Italian Championship, the second a prolonged tournament.

We had four players coming from other countries: Chris Jackson from the USA, Ludwing from Finland and Etienne Dufour from Switzerland, Mehemet Apaydin is living in Italy and UK but managed to be here for the tournament.

You can give a look at Team Yankee lists here.

And at the FOW lists here.

Team Yankee Players

Player Country/Italian City Army
Chris Jackson United States USSR
Claudio Tiso Torino US
Davide Ranzani Milan UK
Emilio Arbasino Pavia US
Flaviano Maggioni Trento Czechoslovack
Gianluca Moroni Pesaro Iraq
Livio Tonazzo Vicenza USSR
Ludwig Finland IDF
Massimo Gaffurri Pavia West German
Paolo Martiniello Torino US
Paolo Paglianti Milan UK
Tiberio Vinante Vicenza UK

Flames of War MID players (Saturday, full tournament)

Player Country/Italian City Army
Alessandro Bossi Milan USA
Ambrogio Carnaghi Varese USA
Davide Renzani Milano USSR
Etienne Dufur Swiss USSR
Filippo Arioso Milano UK
Giacomo Velini Città di castello USSR
Giorgio Bendotti Milan German
Luca Baroni Bergamo USSR
Matteo Fiorino Milan UK
Mattia Sandrini Biella Italian
Memehet Apaydin Turkey USSR
Paolo Paglianti Milano British
Riccardo Sassi Milano German
Stefano Zanchi Bergamo Italy


The Tables

The Milan club players can supply 15mm WW2 and modern buildings, trees and other elements for about 12 tables. We had also a special prize for the best “decoration” table and asked every player with tables and coming by car to bring one table. Etienne was so nice to take enough decorations for two tables from Switzerland, for example.

Team Yankee European World Series - Milan 2023
Chris Jackson from the USA and Claudio Tiso from Torino, battling to control a city with a bridge.
I build some Gas tanks for a Middle East table. The base is cylindric ice cream boxes with their tops, actually built by my father, who introduced me to the joy of modelling. I added various tubes printed in 3D, painted in brass with some Games Workshop contrast brownish wash.
Team Yankee European World Series - Milan 2023
A gas tank we can use both for FOW and Team Yankee. Easy to build, fun to paint. 

My games

I was, as always, the odd player – it’s the “curse” for the tournament organizer. Luckily, we had no renouncement and all players come to the tournament. I played on Saturday at the FOW tournament, and I switched to TY on Sunday to replace two players who couldn’t come for two days.

Team Yankee European World Series - Milan 2023
 This is my list. There are many like it, but this is mine.
I played with the US, and this was the list. The idea was to have a Sherman company and enjoy the “discount” from the “Dynamic points”. I love Shermans, I think they are the perfect all-around tanks – especially in the Mid. The US ones come to a very good cost, as they are green and hit on 3+. However, they also have a fantastic AT 10 with ROF 2 on the move, thanks to the stabilizers (although with a -1 malus). Some Stuarts fill up the company and are a good assault team, with the “Courageous and Faithfull” card giving them Skill 4+ and morale 4+.

The US army is very good when it comes to artillery: I had 4 artilleries: the T30s, the armoured mortars, and two units of Priests (9 points each, while the British for exactly the same result “pays” 20!). And US Army has the special rule “Time on Target”, making them perfect infantry and gun killers. With all these artilleries (technically, the Recon Patrol can also shoot a barrage, with a single jeep with mortar), I chose to take with me an Observer. Finally, to punch the soft spot, a Parachute platoon, a very good assault unity with a sixth artillery and two bazookas. I was thinking to get a British allied Paras, but in the end, I opted for the US 101° as they can receive the HQ bonus reroll and can observe for artillery.

First game, with Matteo Fiorino
Team Yankee European World Series - Milan 2023

Matteo is the perfect example of what dedication and passion can do. He began to play just less than one year ago – the Milan club is growing very fast! – and already got third place in a tournament in January. Bravo Matteo!

This time, he was playing with an interesting British Desert Rats list, with a full company of Crusaders, all with their essential Scout Car. Two Churchills to punch everything, and a Valentine troop to add some armour.

We rolled for the mission, and we had “Valley of Death”, with Matteo attacking. I defended on the right of an urban table, full of buildings. I was lucky that Matteo too add only one infantry. With many British fast tanks, I wanted my Sherman on the table from the start, so I add to put almost everything else in Reserve. The good news was that my reserves would emerge from the sides, exactly where they could shoot on the British flank armours. The bad news, I had 7 medium tanks, Matteo 20+ all headed to my central objective.

I put my Shermans in cover, behind some buildings. I was not interested in shooting at long range, as Crusaders are hit on 4+ and if they don’t shoot and take cover, at 6+ (even 7+ at long range). Much better to keep the head low and wait for him to be closer. I just shoot onto Matteo’s single infantry with my only on-table artillery and pin it – British recover at 4+ morale, so there was a good chance I could stop it for a couple of precious turns, waiting for my Delayed Reserves.

Before turn 3, Matteo was in a good position on both flanks and in the central big avenue. Time to show up the Shermans: they moved behind some low walls and began to shoot. I destroyed a Crusader platoon, but Matteo kept advancing, adding the Churchil 2-tanks platoon that was frontally invulnerable to my 75mm. My Stuart emerged from the reserves on the right, and destroyed a single other Crusader platoon before being wiped out – but Matteo lost another turn to destroy them. Time is very precious in this mission. also, the next turn my Paras arrived on the table and assaulted the remaining Crusaders on that flank: Matteo had aligned them to shoot the Stuarts, so I jumped on their flanks with only 6 gun shooting at my infantry. The bazooka bailed a couple of tanks and the better morale of the paras won the close combat, and I destroyed two more Crusader platoons.

With the Churchills relentlessly moving on my line, my plan switched from “protect the objectives” to “kill the Crusader formation”. I was in a very good position, but Matteo understood the plan and fast moved his Valentine to conquer one of the objectives, winning the game 6-3.

Second Game, Stefano Zanchi with Italians

Stefano is another very good player, and I wish we could play more often. We rolled the missions and we went for “Escape”, with me defending again against a full Italian assault, His list has a Tank Company with both M14/41 and Semoventes, with a lot of supports ranging from a German Tiger to a full Hungarian infantry allied formation. Another army with a lot of artillery units, and the strong and nearly indestructible Tiger to supply high AT.

Again, I had to defend on the short edge: I chose the right side, with a very handy wood covering the area where Stefano could possibly place the objectives. With the Tiger and many Italian tanks on the table, I chose to put once again almost all supports in reserves and keep the precious Shermans on the table. They moved in the centre, behind the wood, covering the infantry taking position on the most exposed objective. Stefano advanced full ahead with his tanks, trying to entrap me with a “pinch” maneuver, and left the Semovente and the Tigers behind to cover his back, as my reserves would appear behind him. I think this was the only error from Stefano: with the Shermans on his front, he should have moved at least the Tiger to shoot them, ignoring the slight risk of getting some hit on the flanks from the Priests.

I destroyed a couple of advancing M14s, defeating the first wave of Italian tanks: my Priests appeared on the back, and they were cut to pieces by Semoventi and Tiger. Stefano realized he lacked a pushing in the front, so he moved both the Semoventi and Tiger to reach for the Objective. Again, I had to change plan: the Tiger could easily knock out my Shermans in a couple of turns, so I opted to leave the paras to defend the objectives in a very stretched formation, and moved ahead with the Shermans to hunt down the remaining two units of Semovente. I killed (with some luck, I have to admit) one of them, and the Italian formation broke.


Third game, Mattia Sandrini with Italians


Mattia is a close friend from a nearby city and we play often enough to fully respect each other. He is also a deep connoisseur of the rules, and he is frequently the Milan tournament Umpire. A player that surely commits few errors!


His list is mostly different from Stefano’s. He has a very strong Folgore Parachute Company, with two assault platoons and two mortars, plus a gun platoon. The assault would be also supported by two powerful Lancia guns, a M14/41 tank, and Semovente (long) platoons.


The mission was again “Valley of Death” and I was defending again on the right. As in the other two games, I add to keep the Sherman on tables to counter the tank assault. Mattia sniped with the Lancia some of my Shermans, killing a couple of them. However, I began to range in on them with my on-table artillery, and added more barrage as the other artillery platoons emerged from reserves. After some turns, Matteo lost the Lancias, and I could jump out with the remaining Shermans to bring destruction to Semoventi and M14s without fearing any retribution. Mattia assaulted the central wood with both his infantry, but without the support of tanks and Lancias, I managed to pin them with the Stuarts, while the Shermans kept safe the objective. With one platoon decimated and the other pinned and close to fleeing, he conceded and we went to the pub to have a refreshing beer, obviously on me!


Team Yankee European World Series - Milan 2023

Here are the winners of the FOW “Saturday” tournament, valid for the official Italian FOW Championship
I ended up second, just behind Giacomo Velini from Città di Castello, who firmly won the tournament with two solid wins and a good tie with Etienne, who ended up third.

The prizes and the winners

On Sunday, we resumed the FOW tournament with a second day of games. In the end, Etienne won unmatched the “second-day” tournament, followed by Mehemet Apaydin and Giorgio Bendotti.

Team Yankee European World Series - Milan 2023
What a surprise! Chris Jackson got the first prize.
The Team Yankee event was won – surprise surprise – by Chris Jackson, who won three games on four and got 25 “Battlefront” points. Very close to him, Livio Tonazzo with 3 games won and 24 “Battlefront” points – close, but no cigar! Flaviano Maggiorni third, with two games won and 20 “Battlefront” points. It’s interesting to note that both the first players of Team Yankee and the first two for FOW had URSS or Pact armies (actually, I was the only one to get a cup with a non-URSS, USA army!). Is this a new wargaming dawn for the East?

Some random photos

Team Yankee European World Series - Milan 2023
The (almost complete, with one guest) Italian ETC 2023 team drinking nigthtime after the tournament. It was my favorite pub, but we shouted so much they banned us.
Team Yankee European World Series - Milan 2023
Chris Jackson and I in a friendly game on Thursday. He nicely beat my a** up with a smile.
Team Yankee European World Series - Milan 2023
The second best reason to come to Milan-Cornaredo tournaments is the food.
Team Yankee European World Series - Milan 2023
One of the tables won the “best table” competition, from our Swiss friend Etienne.
Team Yankee European World Series - Milan 2023
Some of the FOW Cup, prizes, and medals (for the best player of a given FOW and TY nationality).
Team Yankee European World Series - Milan 2023
Snow tables, dessert tables, modern tables: we tried to have unique tables for variety.