Valencia CF

Spanish association football club

Football club
Full nameValencia Club de Fútbol, S.A.D.
Nickname(s)Los che[1]
Short nameValencia
Founded18 March 1919; 103 years ago (1919-03-18) as Valencia Foot-ball Club
OwnerPeter Lim[3][4]
PresidentLayhoon Chan
Head coachGennaro Gattuso
LeagueLa Liga
2021–22La Liga, 9th of 20
WebsiteClub website
Home colours
Away colours
Third colours
Current season

Valencia Club de Fútbol (Spanish: [baˈlenθja ˈkluβ ðe ˈfuðβol], Valencian: València Club de Futbol [vaˈlensia ˈklub de fubˈbɔl]),[5] commonly referred to as Valencia CF (or simply Valencia) is a professional football club based in Valencia, Spain, that currently plays in La Liga, the top flight of the Spanish league system. Valencia were founded in 1919 and have played their home games at the 55.000-seater Mestalla since 1923.

Valencia has won six Spanish League titles, eight Copa del Rey titles, one Supercopa de España, and one Copa Eva Duarte. In European competitions, they have won two Inter-Cities Fairs Cups, one UEFA Cup, one UEFA Cup Winners' Cup, two UEFA Super Cups, and one UEFA Intertoto Cup. They also reached two UEFA Champions League finals in a row (2000 and 2001). Valencia were also members of the G-14 group of leading European football clubs and since its end has been part of the original members of the European Club Association. In total, Valencia have reached seven major European finals, winning four of them.

It is one of the biggest clubs in the world in terms of number of associates (registered paying supporters), with more than 50,000 season ticket holders and another 20,000+ season ticket holders on the waiting list.[citation needed]

Over the years, the club has achieved a global reputation for their prolific youth academy, or "Acadèmia." Products of their academy include world-class talents such as Raúl Albiol, Andrés Palop, Miguel Ángel Angulo, Javier Farinos, David Albelda, Gaizka Mendieta, and David Silva. Current stars of the game to have graduated in recent years include Isco, Jordi Alba, Juan Bernat, José Gayà, Carlos Soler, Ferran Torres, and Paco Alcácer.


The club was established on 5 March 1919 and officially approved on 18 March 1919, with Octavio Augusto Milego Díaz as its first president; incidentally the presidency was decided by a coin toss. The club played its first competitive match away from home on 21 May 1919 against Valencia Gimnástico, and lost the match 1–0.

Valencia CF moved into the Mestalla stadium in 1923, having played its home matches at the Algirós ground since 7 December 1919. The first match at Mestalla pitted the home side against Castellón Castalia and ended a 0–0 draw. In another match the day after, Valencia won against the same opposition 1–0. Valencia CF won the Regional Championship in 1923, and was eligible to play in the domestic Copa del Rey cup competition for the first time in its history.

1940s: Emergence as a giant in Spanish football

Valencia CF squad in 1931

The Spanish Civil War halted the progress of the Valencia team until 1941, when it won the Copa del Rey, beating RCD Espanyol in the final. In the 1941–42 season, the club won its first Spanish La Liga championship title, although winning the Copa del Rey was more reputable than the championship at that time. The club maintained its consistency to capture the league title again in the 1943–44 season, as well as the 1946–47 league edition. They would conclude their decade of success by winning the 1949 Copa del Rey, this would mean Valencia would end the decade with a record of three La Liga titles and two Copa del Reys. This would cement their name in Spanish football.

In the 1950s, the club failed to emulate the success of the 1940s, even though it grew as a club. A restructuring of Mestalla resulted in an increase in spectator capacity to 45,000, while the club had a number of Spanish and foreign stars. Players such as Spanish international Antonio Puchades and Dutch forward Faas Wilkes graced the pitch at Mestalla. In the 1952–53 season, the club finished as runners-up in the La Liga, and in the following season, the club won the Copa del Rey, then known as the Copa del Generalísimo.

1960s: European successes in the Fairs Cup

Mario Alberto Kempes for Valencia CF in 1979

While managing indifferent league form in the early 1960s, the club had its first European success in the form of the Inter-Cities Fairs Cup (the forerunner to the UEFA Cup). In the 1961–62 season, Valencia beat FC Barcelona in the final. The 1962–63 edition of the Inter-Cities Fairs Cup final pitted Valencia against Croatian club Dinamo Zagreb, which the Valencians also won. Valencia was again present in the Inter-Cities Fairs Cup final in the 1963–64 season, but was defeated 2–1 by Real Zaragoza from Spain.

1970s to early 1980s: Domestic success and more European glory

Former two-time European Footballer of the Year award winner Alfredo Di Stéfano was hired as coach in 1970, and immediately inspired his new club to their fourth La Liga championship and first since 1947. This secured Valencia its first qualification for the prestigious European Cup, contested by the various European domestic champions. Valencia reached the third round of the 1971–72 competition before losing both legs to Hungarian champions Újpesti Dózsa. In 1972 The club also finished runners up both in La Liga and the domestic cup, losing to Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid, respectively. The most notable players of the 1970s era include Austrian midfielder Kurt Jara, forward Johnny Rep of the Netherlands and Argentinian forward Mario Kempes, who became the La Liga topscorer for two consecutive seasons in 1976–77 and 1977–78. Valencia would go on to win the Copa del Rey again in the 1978–79 season, and also capture the European Cup Winners' Cup the next season, after beating English club Arsenal in the final, with Kempes spearheading Valencia's success in Europe.

Mid to late 1980s: Stagnation and relegation

Fernando Gómez Colomer is the player with more appearances for the club with 552.

In 1982, the club appointed Miljan Miljanić as coach. After a disappointing season, Valencia was in 17th place and faced relegation with seven games left to play. Koldo Aguirre replaced Miljanić as coach, and Valencia barely avoided relegation that year, relying on favorable results from other teams to ensure their own survival. In the 1983–84 and 1984–85 seasons, the club was heavily in debt under the presidency of Vicente Tormo. The club finally hit rock bottom when it was relegated at the end of the 1985–86 season, and riven with internal problems such as unpaid player and staff wages, as well as poor morale. The club was relegated for the first time after 55 years in Spanish top-flight football.

Arturo Tuzón was named the new club president, and he helped steer Valencia back to La Liga. Alfredo Di Stéfano returned as coach in 1986 and Valencia won promotion again following the 1986–87 season. Di Stéfano stayed on as coach until the 1987–88 season, when the team finished in 14th position in La Liga. Bulgarian forward Luboslav Penev joined the club in 1989, as Valencia aimed to consolidate their place in La Liga. For the 1988-89 La Liga season Valencia finished third, which would signal their competitiveness going into the 1990s.

1990s: Re-emergence

In the 1989-90 La Liga season Valencia finished runner-up to Real Madrid, and thus qualifying for the UEFA Cup.

Guus Hiddink was appointed as head coach in the 1991–92 season, and the club finished fourth in the League and reached the quarter-finals of the Copa del Rey. In 1992, Valencia CF officially became a Sporting Limited Company, and retained Hiddink as their coach until 1993.

Brazilian coach Carlos Alberto Parreira, fresh from winning the 1994 FIFA World Cup with the Brazilian national team, became manager at Mestalla in 1994. Parreira immediately signed Spanish goalkeeper Andoni Zubizarreta, Russian forward Oleg Salenko, and Predrag Mijatović, but failed to produce results expected of him. He was replaced by new coach José Manuel Rielo. The club's earlier successes continued to elude it, although it was not short of top coaching staff like Luis Aragonés and Jorge Valdano, as well as foreign star forwards like Brazilian Romário, Claudio López, Ariel Ortega from Argentina, and Adrian Ilie from Romania. In the 1995-96 La Liga season, Valencia finished second to Atletico Madrid but were unable to capture the title after a close fought race.

Valencia would struggle for the next two seasons but the 1998-99 La Liga season would signal the start of one of Valencia's most successful periods in their history, they won their first trophy in nineteen years by winning the 1998-99 Copa del Rey under Claudio Ranieri and also qualifying for the UEFA Champions League.

2000s: Valencia returns to the top of Spanish and European football

Valencia started the 1999–00 season by winning another title, the Spanish Super Cup, beating FC Barcelona. Valencia finished third in the league, four points behind the champions Deportivo de La Coruña and level on points with second placed Barça. But the biggest success was in the UEFA Champions League; for the first time in its history, Valencia reached the European Cup final. However, in the final played in Paris on 24 May 2000, Real Madrid beat Valencia 3–0.

It was also Claudio López's farewell, as he had agreed to sign for the Italian side Lazio, also leaving was Farinós for Internazionale and Gerard for Barcelona. The notable signings of that summer were John Carew, Rubén Baraja, Roberto Ayala, Vicente Rodríguez, and the Brazilian left back Fábio Aurélio. Also bought that season was Pablo Aimar in January. Baraja, Aimar, Vicente, and Ayala would soon become a staple of Valencia's dominance of the early 2000s in La Liga.

Soccer Field Transparant.svg

K. González
Claudio López

Valencia started the championship on the right foot and were top of the league after 10 games. After the Christmas break, however, Valencia started to pay for the top demand that such an absorbing competition like the Champions League requires. After passing the two mini-league phases, Héctor Cúper's team eliminated Arsenal in quarter-finals and Leeds United in the semi-finals, and got ready to face Bayern Munich in the big final; Valencia had reached two European Cup finals in a row. This time, the final was to be played in Milan at the San Siro on 23 May. Gaizka Mendieta gave Valencia the lead by scoring from the penalty spot right at the start of the match. Goalkeeper Santiago Cañizares then stopped a penalty from Mehmet Scholl, but Stefan Effenberg drew level after the break thanks to another penalty. After extra time, it went to penalties, where a Mauricio Pellegrino miss gave Bayern Champions League glory and dealt Valencia a second-straight exit in the finals. Valencia went on to slip to fifth place in La Liga and out of Champions League contestation for the 2001–02 season. The final game of the season meant Valencia only needed a draw at the Camp Nou against Barcelona to seal Champions League qualification. Los Che lost to Barcelona 3–2 at the Nou Camp, with a last minute goal from Rivaldo resulting in Barcelona qualifying for the Champions League while Valencia missed out.

The president, D. Pedro Cortés, resigned due to personal reasons and left the club in July, with the satisfaction of having won one Copa del Rey, one Spanish Super Cup, and having been runners-up in two successive Champions League finals. D. Jaime Ortí replaced him as president and expressed his intention on maintaining the good form that had made the club so admired on the European circuit. There were also some changes in the team and staff. Rafael Benítez, after helping CD Tenerife to promotion, replaced Héctor Cúper after the latter became the new coach at Internazionale in Italy. Among the playing squad, Gaizka Mendieta, Didier Deschamps, Luis Milla, and Zlatko Zahovič left, while Carlos Marchena, Mista, Curro Torres, Francisco Rufete, Gonzalo de los Santos, and Salva Ballesta all arrived.

From 1999 up until the end of the 2004 season, Valencia had one of their most successful periods in the club's history. With a total of two La Liga titles, one UEFA Cup, one Copa del Rey, and one UEFA Super Cup in those six years, no less than five first class titles and two Champions League finals had been achieved.

During Valencia's domestic and European dominance of the early 2000s, Argentine Roberto Ayala had been a key component in their defense.

That first game against fellow title rivals Real Madrid produced a significant and important victory. This was followed by a record of 11 games won consecutively, breaking the existing one set in the 1970–71 season, the season they had last won the La Liga title under Alfredo Di Stéfano.

After a defeat in A Coruña against Deportivo on 9 December 2001, the team had to win against RCD Espanyol in the Estadi Olímpic Lluís Companys to prevent falling further behind the league leaders. Valencia were 2–0 down at half time, but a comeback in the second half saw Valencia win 3–2.

In the second part of the season, Benítez's team suffered a small setback after losing 1–0 in the Santiago Bernabéu to Real Madrid, but they recovered from this setback and achieved four victories and two draws in the following six games against UD Las Palmas, Athletic Bilbao, Deportivo Alavés, Real Zaragoza, and Barça.

Soccer Field Transparant.svg

K. González
Juan Sánchez

In one of those crucial games that they would come up against Espanyol, Valencia were trailing 1–0 half-time and a man down too with the dismissal of Carboni, but after two goals from Rubén Baraja, Valencia achieved a 2–1 victory. Furthermore, Real Madrid's defeat in Anoeta to Real Sociedad left Valencia with a three-point lead at the top of the table.

The final game of the season was at La Rosaleda to face Málaga CF, on 5 May 2002, a date that has gone down in Valencia's history. The team shut itself away in Benalmádena, close to the scene of the game, in order to gain focus. An early goal from Roberto Ayala and another close to half-time from Fábio Aurélio assured them their fifth La Liga title, 31 years after their last title win.

The 2002–03 season was a disappointing one for Valencia, as they failed in their attempt to retain the La Liga title and ended up outside of the Champions League spots in fifth, behind Celta de Vigo. They were also knocked out in the quarter-finals of the Champions League by Internazionale on away goals. The 2003–04 season saw Valencia trailing the longtime leaders Real Madrid. In February, after 26 games played, Real Madrid were eight points clear.[6] However, their form declined in the late season and they lost their last five games of the campaign, allowing Valencia to overtake them and win the title. The club added the UEFA Cup to this success. Valencia had now been La Liga champions twice in three seasons.

In the summer of 2004, coach Rafael Benítez decided to leave the club, stating he had had problems with the club president; he would soon become manager of Liverpool. He was replaced by former Valencia coach Claudio Ranieri, who had recently been sacked by Chelsea. His second reign at the club was a disappointment, however, as Valencia harboured realistic hopes of retaining their La Liga crown but, by February, found themselves in seventh place. Valencia had also been knocked out of the Champions League group phase, with Ranieri being sacked promptly in February. The 2004–05 season ended with Valencia outside of the UEFA Cup spots.

In the summer of 2005, Getafe CF coach Quique Flores was appointed as the new manager of Valencia and ended the season in third place, which in turn gained Valencia a place in the Champions League after a season away from the competition. The 2006–07 season was a season with many difficulties, a season which started with realistic hopes of challenging for La Liga was disrupted with a huge list of injuries to key players and internal arguments between Flores and new Sporting Director Amedeo Carboni. Valencia ended the season in fourth place and were knocked out of the Champions League at the quarter-finals stage by Chelsea 3–2 on aggregate, after knocking out Italian champions Inter in the second round. In the summer of 2007, the internal fight between Flores and Carboni was settled with Carboni being replaced by Ángel Ruiz as the new Sporting Director of Valencia.

On 29 October 2007, the Valencia board of directors fired Flores after a string of disappointing performances and caretaker manager Óscar Rubén Fernández took over on a temporary basis until a full-time manager was found, rumoured to be either Marcello Lippi or José Mourinho. A day later, Dutch manager Ronald Koeman announced he would be leaving PSV to sign for Valencia. But there was still no improvement; in fact, Valencia even went on to drop to the 15th position in the league, just two points above the relegation zone. Although on 16 April 2008, Valencia lifted the Copa del Rey with a 3–1 victory over Getafe at the Vicente Calderón Stadium. This was the club's seventh Copa title. Five days later, one day after a devastating 5–1 league defeat in Bilbao, Valencia fired Ronald Koeman and replaced him with Voro, who would guide Valencia as Caretaker Manager for the rest of the season. He went on to win the first game since the sacking of Koeman, beating CA Osasuna 3–0 in his first game in charge. Voro would eventually drag Valencia from the relegation battle to a safe mid-table finish of 10th place, finally ending a disastrous league campaign for Los Che.

35th president of Valencia Manuel Llorente

Highly rated Unai Emery was announced as the new manager of Valencia on 22 May 2008. The start of the young manager's career looked to be promising, with the club winning four out of its first five games, a surge that saw the team rise to the top position of the La Liga table. Despite looking impressive in Europe, Los Che then hit a poor run of form in the league that saw them dip as low as seventh in the standings. Amid the slump emerged reports of a massive internal debt at the club exceeding 400 million Euros, as well as that the players had been unpaid in weeks. The team's problems were compounded when they were knocked out of the UEFA Cup by Dynamo Kyiv on away goals. After a run where Valencia took only five points from ten games in La Liga, an announcement was made that the club had secured a loan that would cover the players' expenses until the end of the year. This announcement coincided with an upturn in form, and the club won six of its next eight games to surge back into the critical fourth place Champions' League spot. However, Los Che were then defeated by 4th place rivals Atlético Madrid and Villarreal in two of the last three games of the campaign, and finished sixth in the table, which meant they failed to qualify for a second successive year for the Champions League.

2010-2014: Debt issues and stability

Over the course of 15 seasons and 481 official matches from 1997 to 2013 as well as serving as team captain, defensive midfielder David Albelda became one of the most recognisable players of Valencia CF.[7]

No solution had yet been found to address the massive debt Valencia was faced with, and rumors persisted that top talents such as David Villa, Juan Mata, and David Silva could leave the club to help balance the books. In the first season of the new decade, Valencia returned to the UEFA Champions League for the first time since the 2007–08 season, as they finished comfortably in third in the 2009–10 La Liga season. However, in the summer of 2010, due to financial reasons, David Villa and David Silva were sold to Barcelona and Manchester City, respectively, to reduce the club's massive debt. But, despite the loss of two of the club's most important players, the team was able to finish comfortably in third again 2010–11 La Liga for the second season running, although they were eliminated from the Champions League by German side Schalke 04 in the Round of 16. In the summer of 2011, then-current captain Juan Mata was sold to Chelsea to further help Valencia's precarious financial situation. It was announced by President Manuel Llorente that the club's debt had been decreased and that the work on the new stadium will restart as soon as possible, sometime in 2012.

Match between Deportivo de La Coruña and Valencia CF.

During the 2012–13 season, Ernesto Valverde was announced as the new manager but after failing to qualify for the Champions League, he stepped down and was replaced by Miroslav Đukić. On 5 July 2013, Amadeo Salvo was named as the new president of the club. Almost a month after Salvo was named president, on 1 August 2013, Valencia sold star striker Roberto Soldado to English club Tottenham Hotspur for a reported fee of €30 million. Miroslav Đukić was sacked six months into the 2013–14 season after just 6 wins in his first 16 matches, Valencia's worst start in 15 years.[8] He was replaced by Juan Antonio Pizzi on 26 December 2013.[9] Under Pizzi, Valencia reached the semi-finals of the UEFA Europa League, where they lost to eventual winners Sevilla on away goals and finished 8th in La Liga despite a disastrous start to the season.[10][11]

2014-present: Peter Lim's ownership

Peter Lim has owned Valencia since 2014.

In May 2014, Singaporean businessman Peter Lim was designated by the Fundación Valencia CF as the buyer of 70.4% of the shares owned by the club's foundation.[3][4] After months of negotiations between Lim and Bankia (the main creditor of the club), an agreement was reached in August 2014.[12] Juan Antonio Pizzi was unexpectedly sacked as head coach and replaced by Nuno Espírito Santo on 2 July 2014.[11][13] Later, Salvo revealed in an interview that hiring Nuno was one of the conditions Lim had insisted on when buying the club. This raised eyebrows in the media because of Nuno's close relationship with the football agent Jorge Mendes, whose first-ever client was Nuno.[14][15] Lim and Mendes are also close friends and business partners.[16] Regardless, Nuno's first season was a successful one. Notable signings included Álvaro Negredo, André Gomes and Enzo Pérez, who had just won the LPFP Primeira Liga Player of the Year in the Portuguese Primeira Liga.[17][18][19] Valencia finished the 2014–15 season in fourth place for Champions League qualification with 77 points, just one point ahead of Sevilla after a dramatic final week, defeating Granada 4–0.[11][20]

On 2 July 2015, Amadeo Salvo resigned from his post as the executive president of Valencia, citing personal reasons. He was a popular figure among the fans.[21] On 10 August 2015, Nicolás Otamendi was sold to Manchester City for £32 million and Aymen Abdennour was signed from Monaco for £22 million as his replacement.[22][23] Valencia defeated Monaco in the Champions League playoff round with a 4–3 aggregate victory.[24] However, Valencia had a poor start to the 2015–16 season, winning 5 out of 13 matches and failing to progress from the Champions League group stages. The fans were also increasingly concerned about the growing influence of Jorge Mendes in the club's activities.[25] On 29 November, Nuno resigned as manager and former Manchester United defender Gary Neville was hired as his replacement on 2 December.[26][27] Valencia went winless for nine matches before earning their first win under Neville in a 2–1 victory at home against Espanyol.[28] On 30 March 2016, Neville was sacked after recording the lowest win percentage in La Liga history for a Valencia manager with minimum of five matches, winning just 3 out of 16 matches. He was replaced by Pako Ayestarán, who was brought in by Neville as the assistant coach just one month prior.[29][30] Valencia finished the season in 12th position.

In the summer of 2016, André Gomes and Paco Alcácer were both sold to Barcelona and Shkodran Mustafi was sold to Arsenal, while Ezequiel Garay and former Manchester United player Nani were brought in.[31][32][33][34][35] Pako Ayestarán was sacked on 21 September 2016 after four-straight defeats at the beginning of the 2016–17 season.[36] Former Italy national team head coach Cesare Prandelli was hired as his replacement on 28 September.[37] However, he resigned after just three months on 30 December, claiming the club had made him false transfer promises.[38] Days later, on 7 January 2017, Valencia sporting director Jesús García Pitarch also resigned, saying he felt like he was being used as a shield for criticism by the club and that he could not defend something he no longer believed in.[39][40] Voro was named caretaker manager for the fifth time until the end of season, with Valencia in 17th position and in danger of relegation.[41] However, results improved under Voro and he steered Valencia clear off relegation, ultimately finishing the season in 12th place.[42] On 27 March, Mateu Alemany was named the new director general of Valencia.[43]

The club also announced club president Lay Hoon Chan had submitted her resignation and that she would be replaced by Anil Murthy.[44] After rumors arose of Lim's attempts at selling the club, Murthy assured the fans and local media that Valencia was a long-term project for both him and Lim, and they would not consider selling the club.[45][46] For the following season, former Villarreal coach Marcelino was named the new manager on 12 May.[47]

After a successful first season under Marcelino, the club secured 4th position and a return to the Champions League. In his second season, they again finished 4th and also reached the semi-finals of the UEFA Europa League. On 25 May 2019, Valencia won the Copa del Rey, upsetting FC Barcelona in the final as they won their first trophy since 2008.[48]

Both Marcelino and sporting director Mateu Alemany, who were credited as the architects of this success,[49] were fired on 11 September 2019 after the former publicly criticized Lim.[49] He was replaced by the ultimately unsuccessful Albert Celades, who was sacked due to poor results, while sporting director César Sanchez resigned that same season,[49] making it six different managers and another six sporting directors by 2020.[50]

For the 2020–21 season, manager Javi Gracia was hired. He was put in charge of a team full of prospects and reserves after the club failed to sign any player during the summer transfer window,[51] but sold key players such as captain Dani Parejo.[52] Local wonderkid Ferran Torres was sold to Manchester City for half his market value.[53] Overall, Valencia sold players worth 85 million euros in order to rebalance the club's books.[54] At the beginning of the season, the club was unable to pay the salaries to the remaining players.[55] After six seasons under Peter Lim's ownership, Valencia CF accumulated losses of 323 million euros,[56] while the value of his biggest investment company, Thomson Medical Group, lost 1.7 billion euros during the same six-year period.[53] Following those years of mismanagement, the playing squad was cut significantly in terms of quality and Lim's ownership has faced strong criticism in Valencia.[53][54][57]

In the 2021–2022 season, José Bordalás was hired after spending 5 seasons at Getafe CF.[58] They reached the Copa del Rey final in his first season in charge, where they lost to Real Betis on penalties after a 1–1 draw.


Panoramic of the Mestalla

Valencia played its first years at the Algirós stadium, but moved to the Mestalla in 1923. In the 1950s, the Mestalla was restructured, which resulted in a capacity increase to 45,000 spectators. Today it holds 49,500 seats, making it the fifth largest stadium in Spain. It is also renowned for its steep terracing and for being one of the most intimidating atmospheres in Europe.[59]

Valencia vs. Roma at the Mestalla in 2011

On 20 May 1923, the Mestalla pitch was inaugurated with a friendly match between Valencia and Levante UD.

A long history has taken place on the Mestalla field since its very beginning, when the Valencia team was not yet in the Primera División. Back then, this stadium could hold 17,000 spectators, and in that time, the club started to show its potential in regional championships, which led the managers of that time to carry out the first alterations of Mestalla in 1927. The stadium's total capacity increased to 25,000 before it became severely damaged during the Civil War; the Mestalla was used as a concentration camp and a junk warehouse. It would only keep its structure, since the rest was a lonely plot of land with no terraces and a stand broken during the war. Once the Valencian pitch was renovated, the Mestalla saw how the team managed to bring home their first title in 1941.

During the 1950s, the Valencia ground experienced the deepest change in its whole history. That project resulted in a stadium with a capacity of 45,500 spectators, that eventually saw destruction by a flood in October 1957 that arose from the overflowing of the Turia River. Nevertheless, the Mestalla not only returned to normality, but also some more improvements were added, like artificial light, which was inaugurated during the 1959 Fallas festivities.

During the 1960s, the stadium kept the same appearance, while the urban view around it was quickly being transformed. Moreover, the ground held its first European matches, with Nottingham Forest being the first foreign team to play at the Mestalla, on 15 September 1961.

From 1969, the expression "Anem a Mestalla" ("Let's go to the Mestalla"), so common among the supporters, began to fall into oblivion. The reason of this was due to a proposed name change of the stadium to honor Luis Casanova Giner, the club's most successful president. Giner admitted he was completely overwhelmed by such honour, but requested in 1994 that the original name of Mestalla remained.

In 1972, the head office of the club, located in the back of the numbered terraces, was inaugurated. It consisted of an office of avant-garde style with a trophy hall, which held the founding flag of the club. In the summer of 1973, more goal seats, which meant the elimination of fourteen rows of standing terraces, were added to provide comfort. Club management also considered the possibility of moving the Mestalla from its present location, to land on the outskirts of the town, before deciding against it.

Mestalla also hosted the Spain national football team for the first time in 1925. It was chosen as the national team's group venue when Spain staged the 1982 FIFA World Cup,[60] and at the 1992 Summer Olympics held in Barcelona. All of Spain's matches up to the final were held at Mestalla, as they won Gold.[61] Mestalla has been the setting for important international matches, has held several Cup finals, and has also been the home of Levante. The ground also provided a temporary home for Castellón and Real Madrid for European games due to stadium development.

New stadium

Model of Nou Mestalla

The 2008–09 season was to have been the last season at the Mestalla, with the club moving to their new 75,000-seater stadium Nou Mestalla in time for the 2009–10 season. However, due to the club being in financial crisis, work on the new stadium has since stopped.[62]

Club identity


Wikimedia Commons has media related to Valencia CF kits.

Originally, Valencia's kit was composed of white shirts, black shorts and socks of the same colour. Through the years, however, these colours have alternated between white and black. The away kit has been shades of orange in recent years while third alternate kits have featured colors from the club crest—yellow, blood orange and blue.

From 1980 to present
Period Kit manufacturer Shirt sponsor
1980–1982 Adidas None
1982–1985 Ressy
1985–1990 Rasan Caja Ahorros Valencia
1990–1992 Puma
1992–1993 Mediterránia
1993–1994 Luanvi
1994–1995 Cip
1995–1998 Ford
1998–2000 Terra Mítica
2000–2001 Nike
2001–2002 Metrored
2002–2003 Terra Mítica
2003–2008 Toyota / Panasonic Toyota Racing
2008–2009 Valencia Experience
2009–2011 Kappa Unibet
2011–2014 Joma Jinko Solar
2014–2016 Adidas beIN Sports
2017–2019 BLU Products
2019–2020 Puma bwin

The team have also attracted smaller, local sponsors over the years. One example is Lamiplast, a Valencia-based furniture company.


To celebrate the club's 75th anniversary the then president Arturo Tuzón commissioned Pablo Sánchez Torella to compose an anthem for the club. This was a pasodoble whose lyrics were later written by Ramón Gimeno Gil in the Valencian language. The anthem had its official presentation on the anniversary of the club on 21 September 1993.


Coat of arms of the city of Valencia

Valencia and the Balearic Islands were conquered by King James I of Aragon during the first half of the 13th century. After the conquest, the King gave them the status of independent kingdoms of whom he was also the king (but they were independent of Aragonese laws and institutions). The arms of Valencia show those of James I.

The unique crowned letters "L" besides the shield were granted by Peter IV. The reason for the letters was that the city had been loyal twice to the King, hence twice a letter "L" and a crown for the king.

There are several possible explanations for the bat; one is that bats are simply quite common in the area. The second theory is that on 9 October 1238, when James I was about to enter the city, re-conquering it from the Moors, a bat landed on the top of his flag, which he interpreted it as a good omen. Following his victory, the bat was added to the coat of arms.

In May 2013, it was reported that DC Comics had started a legal case against the club, claiming that the new bat image design was too similar to Batman.[63] The club issued a statement clarifying that it had intended to use a revised version of its bat logo for a line of casual clothing and applied for permission from the Office of Harmonisation of the Internal Market but the application was dropped after DC Comics filed an objection, not a lawsuit.[64] DC Comics again filed a complaint with the EU's office of IP opposing the trademark application made by Valencia for its centennial logo, claiming there is likely to be confusion with its Batman’s symbol.[65]


Current squad

As of 28 September 2022.[66]

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Pos. Nation Player
1 GK Spain ESP Iago Herrerín
2 DF Cape Verde CPV Thierry Correia
3 DF Spain ESP Toni Lato
4 MF United States USA Yunus Musah
5 DF Brazil BRA Gabriel Paulista
6 MF Spain ESP Hugo Guillamón
7 FW Uruguay URU Edinson Cavani
8 MF Guinea GUI Ilaix Moriba (on loan from RB Leipzig)
9 FW Netherlands NED Justin Kluivert (on loan from Roma)
11 FW Spain ESP Samu Castillejo
12 DF Guinea GUI Mouctar Diakhaby
13 GK Spain ESP Cristian Rivero
No. Pos. Nation Player
14 DF Spain ESP José Gayà (captain)
15 DF Turkey TUR Cenk Özkacar (on loan from Lyon)
16 FW Brazil BRA Samuel Lino (on loan from Atlético Madrid)
17 MF Spain ESP Nico González (on loan from Barcelona)
18 MF Portugal POR André Almeida
19 FW Spain ESP Hugo Duro
20 DF Guadeloupe GLP Dimitri Foulquier
21 DF Spain ESP Jesús Vázquez
22 FW Brazil BRA Marcos André
24 DF Switzerland SUI Eray Cömert
25 GK Georgia (country) GEO Giorgi Mamardashvili
GK Spain ESP Jaume Doménech

Reserve team

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Pos. Nation Player
26 GK Spain ESP Charlie Pérez
29 FW Spain ESP Fran Pérez
33 DF Spain ESP Cristhian Mosquera
35 MF Spain ESP Yellu Santiago
No. Pos. Nation Player
40 FW Spain ESP Diego López
41 MF Portugal POR Tiago Ribeiro (on loan from Monaco)
42 GK Spain ESP Emilio Bernad
43 FW Spain ESP Mario Domínguez

Out on loan

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Pos. Nation Player
DF Spain ESP Jorge Sáenz (on loan to Leganés until 30 June 2023)
MF Peru PER Alessandro Burlamaqui (on loan to Badajoz until 30 June 2023)
No. Pos. Nation Player
MF France FRA Koba Koindredi (on loan to Oviedo until 30 June 2023)
MF Serbia SRB Uroš Račić (on loan to Braga until 30 June 2023)

Coaching staff

Current technical staff
Position Staff
Head coach Italy Gennaro Gattuso
Assistant coach Italy Luigi Riccio
Technical Coach Italy Massimo Innocenti
Italy Francesco Sarlo
Video Analyst Italy Marco Sangermani
Performance Analyst Spain Fran Lapiedra
Goalkeeping coach Spain José Manuel Ochotorena
Italy Roberto Perrone
Fitness coach Italy Bruno Dominici
Italy Dino Tenderini
Physiotherapist Spain Carlos Horacio González González
Spain José Luis Estellés
Spain Mario Jarque
Spain Álex Castillo
Spain Pascual Castell
Physical readapter Spain Jordi Sorlí
Recruitment Analyst Spain Juan Monar
Chief of medical services Spain Pedro López Mateu
Club Doctor Spain Pascual Casany
Spain Juan Aliaga
Spain Antonio Maestro
Delegate Spain Paco Camarasa

Last updated: October 2022
Source: Valencia CF

Notable coaches

The following coaches have all won at least one major trophy when in charge with club
Name Period Total
Domestic International
Spain Ramón Encinas Dios 1939–42 2 1 1 - - - - -
Spain Eduardo Cubells 1943–46 1 1 - - - - - -
Spain Luis Casas Pasarín 1946–48 1 1 - - - - - -
Spain Jacinto Quincoces 1948–54 3 - 2 1 - - - -
Spain Domingo Balmanya 1960–62 1 - - - - - 1 -
Argentina Alejandro Scopelli 1962–63 1 - - - - - 1 -
Spain Edmundo Suárez 1966–68 1 - 1 - - - - -
Argentina Alfredo Di Stéfano 1970–74, 1979–80 2 1 - - - 1 - -
Spain Bernardino Pérez 1979, 1980–82 2 - 1 - - - - - 1
Italy Claudio Ranieri 1997–99, 2004–05 3 - 1 - - - - 1 1
Argentina Héctor Cúper 1999–01 1 - - 1 - - - -
Spain Rafael Benítez 2001–04 3 2 - - - - 1 -
Netherlands Ronald Koeman 2007–08 1 - 1 - - - - -
Spain Marcelino 2017–19 1 - 1 - - - - -
Total 1919– 23 6 8 2 0 1 3 1 2

LL. = La Liga; CdR = Copa del Rey; SC = Supercopa de España; UCL = UEFA Champions League; UCWC = UEFA Cup Winners' Cup; UEL = UEFA Europa League; UIC = UEFA Intertoto Cup; USC = UEFA Super Cup


Player records

Full-back Amedeo Carboni, the foreigner with the most appearances (350).
Most appearances
Rank Player Nationality Apps Years
1 Fernando Spain 553 1983–1998
2 Ricardo Arias Spain 521 1976–1992
3 David Albelda Spain 485 1995–2013
4 Miguel Ángel Angulo Spain 434 1996–2009
5 Manuel Mestre Spain 424 1956–1969
6 Santiago Cañizares Spain 416 1998–2008
7 Enrique Saura Spain 400 1975–1985
8 Dani Parejo Spain 383 2011–2020
9 José Claramunt Spain 375 1966–1978
10 Carlos Arroyo Spain 373 1985–1996
Most goals
Rank Player Nationality Goals Years
1 Mundo Spain 238 1939–1950
2 Waldo Machado Brazil 160 1961–1970
3 Mario Kempes Argentina 149 1976–1981
4 Fernando Spain 143 1983–1998
5 David Villa Spain 129 2005–2010
6 Silvestre Igoa Spain 117 1941–1950
7 Manuel Badenes Spain 102 1950–1956
8 Vicente Seguí Spain 91 1946–1959
9 Luboslav Penev Bulgaria 88 1989–1995
10 Epi Fernández Spain 87 1940–1949


Gonçalo Guedes is the most expensive signing in Valencia's history, costing €40m in 2018.
Record transfer fees paid by Valencia
Rank Player Fee (€) Paid to Date
1 Portugal Gonçalo Guedes 40,000,000 France Paris Saint-Germain 2018
2 Netherlands Jasper Cillessen 35,000,000 Spain Barcelona 2019
3 Spain Rodrigo 30,000,000 Portugal Benfica 2015
4 Spain Álvaro Negredo 28,000,000 England Manchester City 2014
5 Spain Joaquín 25,000,000 Spain Real Betis 2006
Argentina Enzo Pérez Portugal Benfica 2015
Central African Republic Geoffrey Kondogbia Italy Internazionale 2018
8 Argentina Pablo Aimar 24,000,000 Argentina River Plate 2001
9 Tunisia Aymen Abdennour 22,000,000 France Monaco 2015
10 Argentina Ezequiel Garay 20,000,000 Russia Zenit Saint Petersburg 2016
The largest transfer involving Valencia was the sale of Gaizka Mendieta to Lazio for €48 million in 2001.
Record transfer fees received by Valencia
Pos. Player Fee (€) Received from Date
1 Spain Gaizka Mendieta 48,000,000 Italy Lazio 2001
2 Argentina Nicolás Otamendi 45,000,000 England Manchester City 2015
3 Portugal Gonçalo Guedes 41,500,000 England Wolverhampton Wanderers 2022
4 Germany Shkodran Mustafi 41,000,000[67] England Arsenal 2016
5 Portugal João Cancelo 40,400,000 Italy Juventus 2018
6 Spain David Villa 40,000,000 Spain Barcelona 2010
7 Portugal André Gomes 35,000,000 Spain Barcelona 2016
8 Spain David Silva 33,000,000 England Manchester City 2010
9 Argentina Claudio López 32,000,000 Italy Lazio 2000
10 Spain Paco Alcácer 30,000,000 Spain Barcelona 2016
Spain Roberto Soldado England Tottenham Hotspur 2013




Winners (6): 1941–42, 1943–44, 1946–47, 1970–71, 2001–02, 2003–04
Winners (2): 1930–31, 1986–87


Winners (8): 1941, 1948–49, 1954, 1966–67, 1978–79, 1998–99, 2007–08, 2018–19
Winners (1): 1999
Winners (1): 1949


Winners (1): 1979–80
Winners (1): 2003–04
Winners (2): 1980, 2004
Winners (2): 1961–62, 1962–63
Winners (1): 1998

Awards & recognitions

  • IFFHS The World's Club Team of the Year: 2004

Valencia CF in international football

Season-by-season record in international competitions
1 Group stage. Highest-ranked eliminated team in case of qualification, lowest-ranked qualified team in case of elimination.
Intercontinental Cup / FIFA Club World Cup
Season Quarterfinals Semifinals Final / 3rd pos.
UEFA Super Cup
Season Final
1979–80 England Nottingham Forest
2003–04 Portugal Porto
European Cup / UEFA Champions League
Season Preliminary stages Round of 32 Round of 16 Quarterfinals Semifinals Final
1971–72 Luxembourg Union Luxembourg Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia Hajduk Hungary Újpest
1999-00 Israel Hapoel Haifa Scotland Rangers 1 Italy Fiorentina 1 Italy Lazio Spain Barcelona Spain Real Madrid
2000–01 Austria Tirol Innsbruck Greece Olympiacos 1 Austria Sturm Graz 1 England Arsenal England Leeds United Germany Bayern Munich
2002–03 England Liverpool 1 England Arsenal 1 Italy Internazionale
2004–05 Germany Werder Bremen 1
2006–07 Austria Red Bull Salzburg Ukraine Shakhtar Donetsk 1 Italy Internazionale England Chelsea
2007–08 Sweden Elfsborg Germany Schalke 1
2010–11 Scotland Rangers 1 Germany Schalke 04
2011–12 Germany Bayer Leverkusen 1
2012–13 Belarus BATE Borisov 1 France Paris Saint-Germain
2015–16 France Monaco Belgium Gent 1
2018–19 England Man. United 1
2019–20 Netherlands Ajax 1 Italy Atalanta
UEFA Cup Winners' Cup
Season Preliminary stages Round of 32 Round of 16 Quarter-finals Semi-finals Final
1967–68 Northern Ireland Crusaders Romania Steaua București West Germany Bayern Munich
1979–80 Denmark B 1903 Scotland Rangers Spain Barcelona France Nantes England Arsenal
1980–81 France Monaco East Germany Carl Zeiss Jena
Inter-Cities Fairs Cup / UEFA Cup / UEFA Europa League
Season Preliminary stages Round of 32 Round of 16 Quarterfinals Semifinals Final
1961–62 England Nottingham Forest Switzerland Lausanne-Sport Italy Internazionale Hungary MTK Budapest Spain Barcelona
1962–63 Scotland Celtic Scotland Dunfermline Athletic Scotland Hibernian Italy Roma Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia Dinamo
1963–64 Republic of Ireland Shamrock Rovers Austria Rapid Wien Hungary Újpest West Germany 1. FC Köln Spain Real Zaragoza
1964–65 Belgium RFC Liège
1965–66 Scotland Hibernian Switzerland Basel England Leeds United
1966–67 West Germany 1. FC Nürnberg Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia Red Star Belgrade England Leeds United
1968–69 Portugal Sporting CP
1969–70 Bulgaria Slavia Sofia
1970–71 Republic of Ireland Cork Hibernians Belgium Beveren
1972–73 England Manchester City Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia Red Star Belgrade
1978–79 Bulgaria CSKA Sofia Romania Argeș Pitești England West Bromwich Albion
1981–82 Czechoslovakia Bohemians Portugal Boavista Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia Hajduk Split Sweden IFK Göteborg
1982–83 England Manchester U. Czechoslovakia Baník Ostrava Soviet Union Spartak Moscow Belgium Anderlecht
1989–90 Romania Victoria București Portugal Porto
1990–91 Greece Irakis Italy Roma
1992–93 Italy Napoli
1993–94 France Nantes Germany Karlsruher SC
1996–97 Germany Bayern Munich Czech Republic Slavia Prague Turkey Beşiktaş Germany Schalke 04
1998–99 Romania Steaua București England Liverpool
2001–02 Russia Chernomorets Novorossiysk Poland Legia Warsaw Scotland Celtic Switzerland Servette Italy Internazionale
2003–04 Sweden AIK Israel Maccabi Haifa Turkey Beşiktaş Turkey Gençlerbirliği France Bordeaux Spain Villarreal France Marseille
2004–05 Romania Steaua București
2008–09 Portugal Marítimo Belgium Club Brugge 1 Ukraine Dynamo Kyiv
2009–10 Norway Stabæk Italy Genoa 1 Belgium Club Brugge Germany Werder Bremen Spain Atlético Madrid
2011–12 England Stoke City Netherlands PSV Netherlands AZ Spain Atlético Madrid
2013–14 Russia Kuban Krasnodar 1 Ukraine Dynamo Kyiv Bulgaria Ludogorets Razgrad Switzerland Basel Spain Sevilla
2015–16 Austria Rapid Wien Spain Athletic Bilbao
2018–19 Scotland Celtic Russia Krasnodar Spain Villarreal England Arsenal
UEFA Intertoto Cup
Season Round of 32 Round of 16 Quarter-finals Semi-finals Finals
1998–99 Russia Shinnik Yaroslavl Spain Espanyol Austria Austria Salzburg
2005–06 Belgium Gent Netherlands Roda JC Germany Hamburger SV

The Academy: Training Centre Foundation Valencia CF

Since May 2009, Valencia CF has had a training centre, this is the first multidisciplinary training center for a football club in Spain.[68]

The Training Centre Foundation Valencia CF "The Academy" offers university education,[69] classroom training, and online training related to sport and football soccer.[70]

Valencia CF is one of the few clubs in Spain that organises a Sport Management MBA, the MBA in International Sport Management, currently performs with Valencia Catholic University Saint Vincent Martyr.[71]

On the 90th anniversary of Valencia CF, The academy opened with the University of Valencia the first university course that studied the history of a football club, Valencia CF is the first football club in Spain, object of study on college.[72]

Motorsports involvement

Valencia CF fans

Valencia CF were also involved in motorsports such as Formula One, Super GT, MotoGP, Moto2, Moto3, 250cc and Formula Nippon. Valencia CF was an official partner of Panasonic Toyota Racing in 2003 until 2008 to commemorate Toyota as their shirt sponsor. Valencia CF also sponsored all Toyota-engined Formula Nippon teams and also Toyota Super GT teams in GT500 and GT300 cars. In 2009, Valencia CF became an official partner of former 250cc team Stop And Go Racing Team and later in 2014 Valencia CF also became official partner of Aspar Team in MotoGP, Moto2 and Moto3 classes, respectively.

E-Sports involvement

In June 2016, Valencia opened an E-Sports division with presences in Hearthstone, Rocket League and League of Legends – in the last case, they joined Beşiktaş, Santos, Schalke and PSG in acquiring League teams. They announced their League roster on 13 July, composed mostly of Spanish players, including some with European League of Legends Championship Series (EU LCS) experience.[73]

In November 2020, Valencia CF eSports launched a team on Arena of Valor in Thailand. The team consist of 6 Thai players, competing in the RoV Pro League competitions. They joined the local club Buriram United FC, and after that, French club Paris Saint-Germain FC in acquiring AoV teams.

See also

  • iconAssociation football portal
  • flagSpain portal


  • Valencia Club de Fútbol (1919–1969), Bodas de Oro (in Spanish), de José Manuel Hernández Perpiñá. 1969, Talleres Tipográficos Vila, S.L.
  • Historia del Valencia F.C. (in Spanish), de Jaime Hernández Perpiñá. 1974, Ediciones Danae, S.A. OCLC 2985617
  • La Gran Historia del Valencia C.F. (in Spanish), de Jaime Hernández Perpiñá. 1994, Levante-EMV. ISBN 84-87502-36-9
  • DVD Valencia C.F. (Historia Temática). Un histórico en la Liga. (in Spanish), 2003, Superdeporte. V-4342-2003


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  73. ^ El Valencia CF eSports presenta su equip de League of Legends (Spanish) Valencia CF

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