2013 UEFA Champions League: Valencia Club de Futbol
Valencia CF (often referred to as Los Che) was established on March 5th, 1919, and played their first match against Valencia Gimnastico on May 21st. In 1923, they moved into Mestalla Stadium. They are the third most successful Spanish team, as well as the third most supported (behind the obvious Real Madrid and FC Barcelona). It is one of the biggest supported clubs in the world in terms of registered supporters, as well as over 50,000 season ticket holders and another 20,000 plus on waiting list – with a new stadium being built to hold a 75,000 capacity. They have rivalries with Levante UD who are also in the City of Valencia, and clubs in the Valencian Region – Hercules CF and Villarreal CF.
In 1923, Valencia CF won their first regional championship meaning that they could participate in the Spain Cup for the first time. They lost in the first round in 3 matches, winning their first match at home, and losing the subsequent away match and tiebreaker match (advance on points).
When La Liga was being formed in the late 20’s, Valencia strived to be in the first division league (as it was being split into first and second). 9 teams were decided to be a part of the first division, 6 champions of the Spanish cup, and their runner’s up. Valencia was a part of a 4 team play in and lost, moving to the second league. In their 3rd year in the league, they achieved promotion into the first division league. In the 1940’s they found much success winning the Copa Del Rey in 41, and La Liga in the 41-42, 43-44, and 46-47 seasons. They then found international European success in the 60’s with 2 Inter-Cities Fairs Cup wins (precursor to the UEFA Cup). They had varying annual success until the 1980’s where they faced relegation in 1982, and increased debt in the following years. They were finally relegated for the first time in 1986. Valencia then changed president and coach, helping them to win promotion in the following season 86-87.
The club has had varied success in the time between 87 and now – being runners up and winning La Liga twice, the Copa Del Rey twice, the Supercopa de Espana, UEFA Cup, UEFA Super Cup, and runners up twice in the UEFA CL.
The club was recently been in financial crisis – having amassed debts with the new stadium, and player signings. The stadium work had to be put on hold for 2 years, and they also sold David Villa, Juan Mata, and David Silva in attempts to decrease club debt. In December 2011 it was announced that work on the new stadium will sart back up, and is expected to be ready for 2014.
- Location: Valencia, Spain
- Stadium: Mestalla
- Stadium Capacity: 55,000
- 2011-12 Season: 3rd in La Liga, Group stage of Champions League, Semi-finals in Europa League,
- UEFA Coefficent: 8th
- UEFA Cup (Europa League) – 2004
- Fairs Cup (UEFA Cup) – 1961-62, 1962-63
- UEFA Super Cup – 1980, 2004
- UEFA Intertoto Cup - 1998
- UEFA Cup Winner’s Cup - 1980
- La Liga – 1941-42, 1943-44, 1946-47, 1970-71, 2001-02, 2003-04
- Copa Del Rey – 1941, 1949, 1954, 1967, 1979, 1999, 2008
- Supercopa de Espana – 1999
- Copa Eva Duarte –1949
- Segunda Division –1930-31, 1986-87
Current Players to Know:
- Roberto Soldado Rillo – 27 year old striker born in Valencia. Began playing for Real Madrid (B team at 15). Joining Valencia in 2010, has had 84 appearances and 46 goals in league play, 121 appearances and 69 goals in all competitions (378 apps and 182 goals in entire career). Has represented Spain at all youth levels, and has 7 appearances and 4 goals for the senior national team, most recently for the 2014 WC qualifiers.
- Adil Rami –27 year old centerback. Joined the club on 2012 (owned in 2011 from Lille, but loaned out for remainder of season). Moroccan who is known for his physical strength, free kicks, and 6’3” height.
- Tino Costa – 28 year old central midfielder. Technical skill, free kick and pin-point passing.
- Jonas – 28 year old forward. Brazilian international. Joined the club in 2011, scoring 19 goals in all competitions for the ’11-12 season.
Past Players to Know:
- Juan Carlos Quincoces II – back and central defender. 1953/54 – 1964. Captain of the team, and appeared in 120 consecutive league competitions, in addition to cup matches. 301 total appearances and 1 goal.
- Edumundo Suarez – forward. Known for his physical power and goal scoring, was the top goalscorer for Valencia in the forties. Played for Valencia from 1939 until the 1949/50 season. 287 appareances, 269 goals – the current top scorer for the club. Later became coach for Valencia.
- Waldo Machado – striker, first successful Brazilian to play for Valencia. Good at scoring from free kicks and shoot from any position. Played for Valencia from 1961 to 1969. 296 appearances, 160 goals – but has a career total of 497 goals.
- Fernando Gomez – attacking midfielder, 1983-98. Born in Valencia. Regarded in the club for refusing multiple “millionaire bids” during his career (as per team site). Appeared in a club record of 553 matches, scoring 142 goals.
- Gaizka Mendiate – midfielder, 1993-2001. UEFA chose him as best midfielder in Europe in 99-2000, and 2000-2001 seasons, as well as the best player of the Spanish League in 99-2000. 305 appearances and 45 goals.
- David Villa – 31 year old striker – 2005 to 2010. Sold to FC Barcelona in 2010 for 40 million Euros. 155 appearances and 29 goals. Valencia’s top scorer from 2005 to 2010. Current all-time scorer for Spain.
- Juan Mata – 24 year old attacking midfielder – 2007 – 2011. Sold to Chelsea in 2011 for 23.5 million Pounds. Was instrumental in Valencia’s 2008 Copa Del Rey victory, scoring twice against Barcelona, and opened up the scoring against Getafe in the final (3-1). Voted Best Young Player by fans in 2008. 170 total appearances and 47 goals. Member of Spain national team with 20 appearances and 6 goals.
Valencia vs Paris Saint-Germain
First Leg: February 19, 2013
Estádio do Dragão, Porto - 2:45 ET
Second Leg: March13, 2013
La Rosaleda, Malaga - 2:45 ET