Villarreal CF, in the season in which the club will celebrate its 100th anniversary, have announced the launch of a historical archive. This will be a space full of memories and, to bring it to life, the club can count on the support of the Vila-real City Council, the Jaume I University plus the staff who manage its archive, and the fans who have participated in the collection of historical material.
Hernán Sanz, Villarreal CF’s director of communication, has highlighted the importance of the public participation in this initiative. “This is a club that only consolidated its place at the top level in the past 25 years, meaning it can be difficult to find a variety of material from the previous era, so it’s very significant for people to support this project and to get involved alongside the club.”
Fernando Roig, the club president, spoke at the presentation of this initiative and explained that the aim is “to take the definitive step to try to recover and rebuild the history of Villarreal CF, which is why we have decided to create the club’s historical archive”. This is a way of strengthening identity and visibility at the same time as increasing the sense of belonging to the club, with the involvement of the fans.
As for the kinds of historical pieces Villarreal CF are looking for, they’re open to all options. “What we want is to collect all kinds of possible materials,” said Sanz. “This could be objects, shirts, pennants, photographs and, of course, any audiovisual content that exists.” This will all come together to create a transmedia archive that will become “a visual and interactive space with an attractive story”.
Among the materials that have already been discovered, Sanz highlighted a video of the team’s first promotion to LaLiga SmartBank level in 1970. He reflected: “It’s very difficult to find audiovisual material so to be able to have this footage, which was recorded by a supporter who is still alive and is now 99 years old, is very lucky for us.”
The historical archive will be based at the redeveloped Estadio de la Cerámica and, once it is created, it will be followed by the construction of the club museum, with this already being worked on and with this also to be in the stadium. “The plan is for both to coexist and have their own structure,” the director added. “The remodelling of the stadium entails an expansion of our business model, as the fan experience will be improved and new interior spaces will be created, so it’ll be possible to generate more revenue from a modern and accessible venue. Villarreal CF and the stadium are among the main tourist attractions for the city of Vila-real, so the plan is for the museum to be a reference in the world of football and a further boost for the tourism industry.”
The historical archive project is just one of the initiatives that the club will carry out to celebrate the centenary. The club concluded: “To celebrate this event, we want to create a commemorative anthem, to hold a party at the stadium on March 10th, the exact date of the club’s foundation, to organise a legends match and to tour the most important towns in the province, among other activities.”