Finnish top-tier association football league
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Veikkausliiga (Swedish: Tipsligan) is the premier division of Finnish football, comprising the top 12 clubs of the country. Its main sponsor is the Finnish national betting agency Veikkaus, hence the league's name. Veikkausliiga was founded in 1990; before that the top division was called Mestaruussarja (championship series) since 1930 which was an amateur or semi-professional league. Between 1908 and 1930 the championship was decided in a cup competition. Ykkönen (division one) has been the second highest level of Finnish football since 1973. During the 1990 and 1991 seasons the Veikkausliiga was played under the name "Futisliiga" (Swedish: Fotbollsligan). As with certain other cold-climate European countries, league matches in Finland are played in summer, with a schedule usually from April to October. The format and number of teams has changed frequently, and as of 2016 there are 12 teams, with each team playing the others three times, for 33 rounds during the season. The best six teams from the previous season play 17 home matches, while the other six teams play 16 home matches. At the end of the season, the lowest-placed team is relegated to Ykkönen, whose winner is promoted to Veikkausliiga, and the second-worst team plays a two-leg play-off versus the Ykkönen runner-up. In 2010 the average annual salary with fringe benefits for a league player was 24,400 euro. Veikkausliiga is a founding member of the European Professional Football Leagues association.
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Finnish highest football division
Finnish Premier League
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