Category - Blog

How Do Llagostera Compete?

LGT

Everybody remembers SD Eibar last year in La Liga. The small club who couldn’t possibly compete according to some soccer “experts” reaching Spain’s highest level who then received an eleventh hour reprieve from relegation following Elche’s administrative relegation to Liga Adelante. But there’s another club from an even smaller town in Spain that has a quicker, greater rise through Spain’s pyramid & shows the rare but possible progression a club can make in an open promotion/relegation system.

As much as wannabe, modern sports financiers and promotion/relegation opponents claims that Eibar couldn’t possibly compete, Eibar has been in at least Spain’s third highest level since 1986; some thirty years. In fact, Eibar has been in at least the second highest division in Spain for twenty-three of the last twenty-eight years. So, they have shown they can compete in the higher levels of Spain despite their small stadium capacity. In the case of Unió Esportiva Llagostera, or UE Llagostera, their rise through the Spanish pyramid is nothing short of remarkable.

Llagostera is a town with a population of all of 7,915 (2010) people. Llagostera was promoted to Liga Adelante for the first time last year becoming the smallest town to have ever had a club reach one of Spain’s highest two levels. I’m from Louisiana originally. This population would rank it about seventy-eighth in population of the state. In fact, Llagostera is so small that their home stadium, Estadi Municipal de Llagostera, with a capacity of 1,500 people, couldn’t be used by the club following their promotion to Liga Adelante because it didn’t meet minimum stadium requirements for the division. They were forced to play their home matches over thirty kilometers away in a town called Palamós. See, over there figure out solutions to problems instead of stamping their foot, throwing a tantrum screaming, “what shall we ever do because our stadium is too small and isn’t all-seater?!”

Llagostera’s rise is all the more remarkable because in 1997/1998 they were in Tercera Territorial or Spain’s ninth division. Yes, you read that right, the ninth division. That’s tantamount to you & your friends’ recreational team’s level. They won that league that year and were promoted to the Segunda Territorial of Catalonia where they spent seven years before being promoted to Primera Territorial in 2005 where they immediately were champions and were promoted to the Preferente Territorial of Catalonia or Spain’s sixth level. Llagostera spent two years at this level before being promoted as runners-up to the Primera Catalonia in 2008.

The Primera Catalonia is the highest provincial division where it would be similar to being county or district champions in a state in the US. Geographically speaking since obviously the United States doesn’t have state leagues involved in an open pyramid system. Here Llagostera spent only a year before being promoted to Spain’s fourth level, the Tercera Division.

In Spain’s Tercera Division, Llagostera met their demise & quickly went into extinction. Actually, that’s not what happened at all. They spent two years at this level before spending three years in Segunda División B following promotion in 2011. Now at Spain’s third highest level, Llagostera still soldiered on as the tiny club who “couldn’t compete” receiving promotion after winning their group in 2014. Last year in Spain’s second highest level, Llagostera, now sporting a massive 330,675 person stadium (not really), finished an impressive ninth.

So far in this current season Llagostera sits at the bottom of the table & looks to have a full on relegation battle on their hands this season. However, after rising seven levels in eighteen years it shows the possibility of how a club from a tiny town can reach heights undreamed of if given a chance. An honest, fair chance in an open system. Does it mean they will ever win a La Liga or Liga Adelante title? No. Does it mean all tiny clubs will reach these heights one day? Of course not. What it does show is the possibility of a remarkable story that would likely happen to some town or village here in the United States eventually if an open system was instituted. Not being able to compete forever with large clubs doesn’t mean you didn’t compete for a time. Why would anyone really be against a system like this?

Notes
– Llagostera has won four titles during their rise: 1998 Tercera Territorial group (9th level), 2006 Primera Territorial group (7th level), 2009 Primera Catalonia group (5th level) & 2014 Segunda División B Group III (3rd level)

– Llagostera has seven promotions since 1998: 1998 to Segunda Territorial group from Tercera Territorial group, 2005 to Primera Territorial group from Segunda Territorial group, 2006 to Preferente Territorial group from Primera Territorial group, 2008 to Primera Catalonia group from Preferente Territorial group, 2009 to Tercera División group from Primera Catalonia group, 2011 to Segunda División B group from Tercera División group, 2014 to Segunda División/Liga Adelante from Segunda División B group

– Llagostera currently has a player who goes by the Brazilian nom de guerre, Mosquito, who has been capped at several youth levels for Brazil

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Leicester City Juggernauts

Another Premier League weekend is in the books and that means the Two Daft Yanks are back! There is much to talk about this week so instead of rambling on about nothing how about we show you some show notes? On this week’s episode:

  • The Dark Arts With Diego Costa
  • Leicester City Juggernauts
  • North London Derby, League Cup Edition
  • NAC Breda, What’s In A Name?
  • Should the EPL do more to help it’s Champions League sides?

Listen to/download the podcast below or listen on your mobile device via StitcherTuneIn or iTunes

TDY: Leicester City Juggernauts

 

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Premier League Clubs Ready To Take On Europe

uefa

The Champions League and Europa League draws have been made. Here are the groups for the six English sides that will look for European glory this 15/16 season. Take a look at the groups below and let us know how you think the English clubs will do in continental competition this year.

Champions League

Group B-

PSV Eindhoven

Manchester United

CSKA Moscow

VfL Wolfsburg

Group F-

Bayern Munich

Arsenal

Olympiakos

Dinamo Zagreb

Europa League

Group B –

Rubin

Liverpool

Bordeaux

Sion

 

Group D-

Juventus

Manchester City

Sevilla

Borussia Monchengladbach

Group G-

Chelsea

Porto

Dynamo Kiev

Maccabi Tel-Aviv

 

Group J –

Tottenham

Anderlecht

Monaco

Qarabag

 

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Transfer Mania

det_football_money2_0

You can’t escape it; everywhere you look it inundates you on TV, radio, social media and this very blog (doh!). Everyone has transfer mania! This weekend all the major European leagues will be in action with Spain and Italy starting their league fixtures yet all anyone can and wants to talk about is transfers. After a somewhat dull summer of international football, international club friendlies and MLS we should all be buzzing to see top players at top clubs playing in top leagues. Yet, the only focus in the media and even commentary during matches is who is going to be transferred and to where. It is a product of an artificial transfer window that Corey and I tried to “fix” in the last podcast without much success.

Since the podcast, I have thought of one possible solution that I failed to mention that could be some type of middle ground to settle things down a bit. Getting rid of the transfer window all together is not an option in my opinion and would cause more harm than good. Perhaps keeping the transfer window open with is current dates with a slight tweak is the way to go. Here are my proposed changes:

1. Foreign transfers must be completed before the season starts.

2. The window will remain open until end of August/early September but only domestic transfers will be allowed.

This plan could easily have unintended consequences that I am not considering right now but would benefit the situation by forcing clubs to conclude their foreign business before the season starts. It would still allow for manager experimentation and squad changes to me made but those changes would have to be domestically based. There would still be transfer talk but limiting those transfers to domestic transfers would greatly reduce the current transfer three ring circus.

What are your thoughts? Is this a feasible solution or has the genie been let out of the bottle with the popularity of football in the global media?

 

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Tottenham Hotspur Training Pictures

Nice Grass!

Thanks to Jim Hart of Year Zero Soccer, I was able to see the Tottenham Hotspur training session today in an up close fashion. Here are some of the best pictures from the morning as Spurs prepare to take on the MLS All-Stars in Denver.

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