RC Celta de Vigo

Celta Vigo
Club crest
Full nameReal Club Celta de Vigo, S.A.D.
Nickname(s)Célticos (The Celts/Celtics)
Celestes (The Sky Blues)
O Celtiña (The Lovely/Little Celta)
Founded23 August 1923; 95 years ago (1923-08-23)
GroundAbanca-Balaídos
Capacity29,000[1]
Coordinates42°12′42.609″N 8°44′22.9266″W / 42°12′42.609″N 8°44′22.9266″W / 42.21183583; -8.739701833
PresidentCarlos Mouriño1
Head CoachAntonio Mohamed
LeagueLa Liga
2017–18La Liga, 13th
WebsiteClub website
Current season

Real Club Celta de Vigo (Galician pronunciation: [reˈal ˈkluβ ˈθelta ðe ˈβiɣo]; Royal Club Celta de Vigo), commonly known as Celta Vigo or simply Celta, is a Spanish professional football club based in Vigo, Galicia, currently playing in La Liga. It was founded on 23 August 1923 following the merger of Real Vigo Sporting and Real Fortuna Football Club. Nicknamed Os Celestes (The Sky Blues), they play in sky blue shirts and socks along with white shorts. The club's home stadium is the Abanca-Balaídos, which seats 29,000 spectators. Celta's name is derived from the Celts who were once present in the region. Its main rival is fellow Galician club Deportivo de La Coruña, with whom it contests the Galician derby.

Celta have never won the league title nor Copa del Rey, although they have reached the final three times in the latter. One of the team's best seasons was 1970–71, when they finished unbeaten at home and were known as the "giant-killers". Celta came sixth that season and qualified for the UEFA Cup for the first time. The club finished in their best-ever position of fourth in 2002–03, qualifying for the 2003–04 UEFA Champions League, where they were eliminated by Arsenal in the Round of 16. In the 2016–17 UEFA Europa League, Celta reached the semi-finals of the UEFA Europa League for the first time, losing to Manchester United.

History

Foundation

Campo de Coia (1908–1928)
Real Club Celta de Vigo vs S.C. Braga in 1945

R.C. Celta de Vigo was formed as a result of the ambition of Vigo's teams to achieve more at national level, where the Basque sides had been their bête noire in the Spanish Championship. The idea was to merge both teams to create a more powerful team at national level. The standard-bearer of this movement was Manuel de Castro, known as "Handicap", a sports writer for the Faro de Vigo who, from 1915, began to write in his articles about the need for a unitarian movement. The slogan of his movement was "Todo por y para Vigo" ("All for and to Vigo"), which eventually found support among the managers of Real Vigo Sporting and Real Club Fortuna de Vigo. It was backed unanimously when de Castro himself presented the motion at the assembly of the Royal Spanish Football Federation in Madrid on 22 June 1923.

On 12 July 1923, at the annual general meetings (AGMs) of Vigo and Fortuna held at the Odeon Theatre and in the Hotel Moderno, respectively, the merger was approved. Thus the "Team of Galicia" was born, as it was dubbed. In the last AGM of Fortuna and Vigo to approve the formation of a new club held on 10 August 1923, the members decided upon the team's name. Various names suggested include "Real Unión de Vigo", "Club Galicia", "Real Atlántic", "Breogán" and "Real Club Olimpico". The latter name was popular, but they eventually decided on "Real Club Celta", an ethnic race linked to Galicia (see Celts). The first president of Celta was Manuel Bárcena de Andrés, the Count of Torre Cedeira. At this AGM, the squad was also decided, which numbered 64 players in total and included some notable players from both Fortuna and Vigo:

  • Goalkeepers: Isidro, Lilo and Rubido
  • Defenders: Otero, Pasarín, Juanito Clemente, Daniel y Kaíto
  • Midfielders: Jacobo Torres, Balbino, Queralt, Hermida, Pombo, Cruces, Córdoba, Máximo y Bienvenido
  • Forwards: Reigosa, Chiarroni, Posada, Polo, Correa, Gerardito, Ramón González, Caride, Pinilla, Salvador, Chicha, Miguelito y Casal, Park.
  • Manager: Francis Cuggy

EuroCelta

1997 through to 2003 saw arguably the best results in Celta's history, this period They were dubbed "EuroCelta" by the Spanish press as a result of their European exploits, notable results included a 4–1 aggregate win against Liverpool in the 1998–99 UEFA Cup, a 4–0 second leg thumping of Juventus in the 1999–2000 UEFA Cup and a 7–0 home win against Benfica also in the 1999–2000 UEFA Cup.

The club would qualify for the 2003–04 UEFA Champions League eventually going out in the last 16 to Arsenal 5–2 on aggregate.

Key players during the period included Alexander Mostovoi, Valery Karpin and Haim Revivo, though the squad also relied upon other international players as well, such as goalkeeper Pablo Cavallero; defender and future coach Eduardo Berizzo, midfielders Claude Makélélé and Mazinho; winger Gustavo López; and strikers Catanha and Lyuboslav Penev, amongst others.

Decline

Celta de Vigo supporters before a game

Celta had a dramatic reversal of fortune in 2003–04. In the previous season, they finished fourth in the league, putting them in the third qualifying round of the Champions League. Celta entered the group phase after eliminating Slavia Prague, and eventually reached the last 16 before being knocked out by Arsenal. However, their domestic form was disastrous, finishing second-to-last in La Liga, thus sealing their relegation to the Segunda División. Although the squad was heavily dismantled following the demotion, Celta earned an immediate return to the top flight after finishing second in 2004–05.

In the 2005–06 season, they finished sixth earning a return once more to the UEFA Cup. They made it to the last 16 in that competition as well before losing to German side Werder Bremen. The next year, 2006–07, Celta finished in 18th and were once again relegated to the Segunda División. At the end of June 2007, Celta avoided going into administration. However, if an agreement was not put in place between the club and its creditors within three months, then courts would declare the liquidation of the club's assets.

Due to heavy debt, the club was forced to sell many players and make tremendous cuts in the club's finances. Since then, they have been relying mainly on the reserve team, combined with some inexpensive signings. During the first three seasons in the Segunda División, the club struggled to avoid further relegation, all amid fears of the club's complete disappearance. This was a period of high instability, with constant changes of managers and players. In the 2010–11 season, however, the signings of striker David Rodríguez, winger Enrique de Lucas and manager Paco Herrera turned the situation around. The club finished sixth after a fantastic season and qualified for promotion. Nevertheless, they were eliminated in the first knockout round by Granada after a penalty shootout, the game having finished 1–1 in 90 minutes.

Return to La Liga

Celta playing local rivals Deportivo de La Coruña on 27 October 2012

On 3 June 2012, Celta returned to La Liga after a five-year absence.[2] In their first season back, they avoided relegation to the Segunda División on the final day after beating RCD Espanyol 1–0 to ensure a 17th-place finish. On 8 June 2013, Celta announced they had signed former Roma and then-Barcelona B manager Luis Enrique to lead the club for the 2013–14 season. Under Luis Enrique, Celta flourished, finishing ninth. After Luis Enrique's departure, his replacement, Eduardo Berizzo, led the team to eighth in La Liga during 2014–15, and the following season saw Celta's highest finish in ten years, finishing in sixth position[3] and earning a place in the 2016–17 UEFA Europa League.

In their return to European competitions, Celta reached the semifinals of the 2016–17 UEFA Europa League, where they were eliminated in the semifinals by Manchester United.

Other Languages
Afrikaans: Celta de Vigo
العربية: سلتا فيغو
беларуская (тарашкевіца)‎: Сэльта Віга
български: ФК Селта
bosanski: Celta de Vigo
čeština: Celta de Vigo
Deutsch: Celta Vigo
Ελληνικά: Θέλτα Βίγο
français: Celta de Vigo
한국어: 셀타 비고
հայերեն: Սելտա Վիգո
hrvatski: Celta de Vigo
Bahasa Indonesia: Celta de Vigo
עברית: סלטה ויגו
latviešu: Bigo "Celta"
lietuvių: RC Celta de Vigo
Bahasa Melayu: Celta de Vigo
Baso Minangkabau: Celta de Vigo
Nederlands: Celta de Vigo
norsk: Celta Vigo
polski: Celta Vigo
русский: Сельта
Simple English: R.C. Celta de Vigo
slovenčina: Celta de Vigo
slovenščina: Celta de Vigo
српски / srpski: ФК Селта Виго
suomi: Celta Vigo
Tagalog: Celta de Vigo
українська: Сельта