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Spanish rugby

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Re: Spanish rugby

Postby Edgar » Wed, 12 Jun 2019, 21:00

Armchair Fan wrote:Fundación Trinidad Alfonso will invest 200,000€ next season in the four Comunitat Valenciana teams involved in División de Honor B:
https://fundaciontrinidadalfonso.org/la ... alenciano/

This foundation is the sports philantropy branch founded by Juan Roig (Mercadona supermarket chain and Valencia Basket owner) which already supported Copa del Rey final last year.


Great news! Thanks for the update. Malaga should be another target area. The Costa del Sol is more British than Spanish. Obviously you'd want to encourage the local community to get involved, but it seems like there should be plenty of expertise and potential fans among the sizable expat community.

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Re: Spanish rugby

Postby Armchair Fan » Wed, 12 Jun 2019, 21:35

I wouldn't say it is more British than Spanish, we're talking about 50,000 British residents in a 1.6 million area. The establishment of British tour operators and the use of English as lingua franca between foreigners gives a bit of a wrong impression as Malaga is the biggest city and has been for a long time separate from touristic destinations (people used to go to Torremolinos, Benalmadena, Marbella...) and foreign communities often opt for different villages. You've got many Germans in Frigiliana, Torrox or Ojén, Russians in Estepona and San Pedro de Alcantara, Finns in Fuengirola, Danish in Benalmadena, Dutch in Torremolinos, Lycée Français is in Malaga but their rugby is played in Rincón de la Victoria...

The problem with Brits is also what Marbella has always experienced. They have a great academy but most Brits return home to enter university and their amateur club setup won't allow them to go beyond División de Honor B. CR Malaga has been promoted to División de Honor B as well this month, but it's a club headed by Argentines who believe in Argentine club philosophy (Martín Calle, Emiliano's father, is its director of rugby; Lautaro, the younger son, is their star player and let's see if he ever jumps from that team, because he looks good enough) and I don't think they have truly pro ambitions...

And there is another factor beyond rugby: basketball is the main sport behind football here. Even kids from expats take it, for example there is a very young Dutch international in Unicaja Málaga, Morgan Stilma.

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Re: Spanish rugby

Postby Edgar » Wed, 12 Jun 2019, 21:58

Interesting. I suspect it's changed a lot since I was there almost two decades ago. Brexit has no doubt impacted on the once thriving British expat scene.

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Re: Spanish rugby

Postby Armchair Fan » Tue, 18 Jun 2019, 10:51

Pablo Miejimolle to replace Steve Barned (injured) against Uruguay:
https://www.revista22.es/2019/06/meijim ... ve-barnes/

He is the fourth player from Marbella academy system in the South American tour squad.

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Re: Spanish rugby

Postby Raven » Tue, 18 Jun 2019, 14:30

So, apparently Santander is having some issues with their sporting venue and have launched a Change.org petition asking for help?

"Our well deserved presence in the level our club has been promoted to is now at risk because our playing pitches are not fully compliant with required standards. It is a public venue, so we are building some social pressure to make the council and regional government aware of the urgency of the situation."

Wouldn´t hurt to give them a hand, "what goes around comes around"

https://www.change.org/p/ayuntamiento-d ... PfqD6W9RBk

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Re: Spanish rugby

Postby Armchair Fan » Tue, 18 Jun 2019, 16:27

One field is too short and shared with soccer teams and the other one is an athletics stadium where moreover they can't sell tickets. In an ideal world they would have a rugby stadium shared by all clubs (there is another one in the city), but let's be honest, it wouldn't be ready in time for next season.

The main issue is that this is a city with two clubs with a pro mentality and playing in national top-tier, but without enough social roots (less than 1,000 players in the whole region) as to push political parties to act. That's why they launched the petition.

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Re: Spanish rugby

Postby Raven » Tue, 18 Jun 2019, 16:34

All are neutral logical explanations, but will they get relegated if they cannot find a solution or what would be the first fand alternative to still be present in the Top Tier next season?

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Re: Spanish rugby

Postby Armchair Fan » Tue, 18 Jun 2019, 16:55

They will always find a way. This very same year FER met with Barcelona town hall representatives because Barça Rugby home field was no longer compliant with the regulations Santander teams are equally at odds with. The promise that they would work on it was enough.

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Re: Spanish rugby

Postby andyrobnev » Fri, 21 Jun 2019, 14:51

Former Spain u20 hooker Hugo Souto signs for Cardiff RFC in Welsh Premiership. His father Jose played the same position for Cardiff in the 80s.

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Re: Spanish rugby

Postby Armchair Fan » Fri, 21 Jun 2019, 14:53

Thank you very much for that info.

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Re: Spanish rugby

Postby Armchair Fan » Wed, 26 Jun 2019, 14:06

Nice article in English about Ricky Andrew's experience as CAU Valencia head coach:
http://www.talkingrugbyunion.co.uk/i-ne ... /23118.htm

The playoff game he is referring to regarding the intensity of impacts was against Bathco, which was as close to a pro team you could find in División de Honor B this year.

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Re: Spanish rugby

Postby victorsra » Sat, 06 Jul 2019, 11:46

"#FERugby | Se somete a votación la nueva competición propuesta por los clubes de División de Honor y que la FER respalda si es S23. El resultado es de 19 votos a favor, 14 abstenciones y 16 en contra, por lo que se aprueba. #AsambleaGeneralOrdinariaFERugby"

What that means?
Brazilian Rugby News: www.portaldorugby.com.br

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Re: Spanish rugby

Postby Armchair Fan » Sat, 06 Jul 2019, 11:50

It is a long tradition in Spanish sport that reserve/feeder teams are allowed to compete in normal leagues as long as they don't share a same division with the senior team (in fact Real Madrid even once played against its academy team a Copa del Rey soccer final in the eighties). So far we had VRAC B, El Salvador Emerging, Alcobendas B, Cisneros Z and Santboiana B playing in División de Honor B (second-tier league).

It looks like General Assembly has approved by a short margin the creation of a Liga Heineken reserve teams league (proposed by Liga Heineken clubs) as long as it is U23 (FER requirement). B teams would be expelled from DHB and play a competition only for them. I fear for its disparity, because people think Bathco will be unable to field such a team, while other have their reserve teams in regional competitions far from the level of those in DHB.

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Re: Spanish rugby

Postby Armchair Fan » Sat, 06 Jul 2019, 17:47

Further info from Revista 22:
https://www.revista22.es/2019/07/asambl ... a-en-2020/

It would be a reserve teams league with at the very least 8 U23 players on the field and at maximum 3 non eligible players at any time of the match.

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Re: Spanish rugby

Postby Armchair Fan » Sun, 07 Jul 2019, 09:24

Other tidbits from both General Assembly and Executive Committee:
- There is some angst regarding November test matches. It is no secret that FER wants Barbarians and/or Maori All Blacks and it has reserved 16 and 23 for such games, but it requires a considerable financial effort and negotiations are still ongoing. The word is Barbarians look more likely and it would make sense after their match v Fiji.
- Regarding budgets: 5.7 M€ in 2018, 4.6 M€ in 2019, 5.5 M€ in 2020. Mind you, 2018 was boosted by EPCR finals.
- There is a request to Spanish Sports Council to adopt French bonus in all national competitions from this year.
- As of today it looks like there isn't an agreement between clubs and FER to show Liga Heineken on TV, as clubs keep defending they should negotiate TV and sponsorship contracts by themselves and/or receive a slice of revenues. FER keeps trying to make them understand that TV coverage actually costs them money.
- Anyway not all hope must be lost since the 'U23' (reserve teams) competition was proposed by clubs and suppported by FER.
- Registered players numbers were increased this season by 7%, reaching almost 38,000.
- Hosting U20 Trophy if conceded would cost FER between 700,000 and 800,000€.
- It would be accompanied by an increased effort to prepare U20 team. Budget permitting, they will meet up to 8 times next season, including at least three games before U20 Euro.
- U18s see their activity increased as well, with an additional game compared to this year and the retrieval of U18 Iberian Cup between Portuguese and Spanish club champions
- There are plans to offer grants to a bunch of young players so they move to Valladolid where a forwards-only academy effort would be created.

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Re: Spanish rugby

Postby Edgar » Sun, 07 Jul 2019, 15:44

Just had a read of this in El Confidencial, which is all about the collapse of Spanish rugby under the weight of too many competitions and commitments. Apparently the Valladolid giants don't want to play in Europe anymore because there is already the SuperCopa, the Copa Iberica (against the Portuguese champ) and the Copa del Rey, as well as the 12-team Division de Honor which is played on a home & away basis and entails 22 rounds prior to the finals. Plus Spain is making overseas tours and hosting foreign teams in the AIs - in addition to its regular involvement in European competition.

https://www.elconfidencial.com/deportes ... IbrZtDsIic

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Re: Spanish rugby

Postby Armchair Fan » Sun, 07 Jul 2019, 16:03

Yes, the article suspiciously looks like a Twitter thread I wrote three days ago...

Nothing we haven't already treated in this forum: too many games in our season. Going to Europe would take a big financial incentive as well as a serious promotion by EPCR, Rugby Europe and FIR. VRAC can't afford to engage into a European competition nobody knows nothing about and we rarely hear something official from until late August or even September.

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Re: Spanish rugby

Postby Edgar » Sun, 07 Jul 2019, 16:11

Armchair Fan wrote:Yes, the article suspiciously looks like a Twitter thread I wrote three days ago...

Nothing we haven't already treated in this forum: too many games in our season. Going to Europe would take a big financial incentive as well as a serious promotion by EPCR, Rugby Europe and FIR. VRAC can't afford to engage into a European competition nobody knows nothing about and we rarely hear something official from until late August or even September.


I had a feeling this might have been old hat, even though the report was new (yesterday). Btw, I'm curious to know how Valladolid became the power base for Spanish rugby. I've heard the story about the Krasnyarsk teams developing their cross-town rivalry in the post-Stalin era. Did something similar happen in Spain - post-Franco, perhaps? What was El Generalisimo's attitude toward rugby?

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Re: Spanish rugby

Postby Armchair Fan » Sun, 07 Jul 2019, 16:52

I don't think politics were involved. Both El Salvador and VRAC derive from schools, and therefore their rivalry goes beyond sport, it's almost a tribal thing. Until democracy Spain was more centralised than it is today, so kids who started playing rugby there often finished in Madrid clubs. It wasn't until the late eighties, early nineties that Valladolid clubs started to really shine but the sport had already grown in that town. They were quickly and in a stable way adapted to professional era and resisted crisis while other team sports in Valladolid faded, so they could inherit from that multisport legacy of the city. And the fact that they have been steadily improving Pepe Rojo, which is an amazing facility for a Tier 2/3 country, with the support of local powers has allowed them to stay up to date too.

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Re: Spanish rugby

Postby Edgar » Sun, 07 Jul 2019, 17:02

Thanks for that information. Yes, they do seem quite proud of the stadium - and rightfully so. I suppose I should have known from the international records that Spanish rugby continued right through the Franco era, although the Catalan national team disappeared, of course, having previously shown some promise at international level with a draw against Italy and narrow losses to France - all in Barcelona.

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Re: Spanish rugby

Postby Tobar » Sun, 07 Jul 2019, 19:04

Armchair Fan wrote:Yes, the article suspiciously looks like a Twitter thread I wrote three days ago...

Nothing we haven't already treated in this forum: too many games in our season. Going to Europe would take a big financial incentive as well as a serious promotion by EPCR, Rugby Europe and FIR. VRAC can't afford to engage into a European competition nobody knows nothing about and we rarely hear something official from until late August or even September.


I should’ve figured that was you too...I guess for some reason you sound more critical on twitter than here lol

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Re: Spanish rugby

Postby Armchair Fan » Mon, 08 Jul 2019, 08:09


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Re: Spanish rugby

Postby Thomas » Mon, 08 Jul 2019, 10:23

Are Spanish clubs playing in Europe or not this year?

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Re: Spanish rugby

Postby Armchair Fan » Mon, 08 Jul 2019, 10:36

Ha. Short answer: no.

Long answer. Have we got any info on Continental Shield going ahead? Can a club afford to engage into a competition it doesn't know anything about nearing mid-July?

I know Spanish clubs are very fusspot and they could have played in Europe if they really wanted to but they have a point. They can't risk a professional season planification for a competition they will not win, their fans don't care and whose existence is even doubtful.

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Re: Spanish rugby

Postby Tobar » Mon, 08 Jul 2019, 18:36

Thomas wrote:Are Spanish clubs playing in Europe or not this year?


Well, technically they always play in Europe!

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