By population, Spain is the sixth largest in Europe and the fifth in the European Union. Spains capital and largest city is Madrid, other urban areas include Barcelona, Valencia, Seville, Bilbao. Modern humans first arrived in the Iberian Peninsula around 35,000 years ago, in the Middle Ages, the area was conquered by Germanic tribes and later by the Moors. Spain is a democracy organised in the form of a government under a constitutional monarchy. It is a power and a major developed country with the worlds fourteenth largest economy by nominal GDP. Jesús Luis Cunchillos argues that the root of the span is the Phoenician word spy. Therefore, i-spn-ya would mean the land where metals are forged, two 15th-century Spanish Jewish scholars, Don Isaac Abravanel and Solomon ibn Verga, gave an explanation now considered folkloric. Both men wrote in two different published works that the first Jews to reach Spain were brought by ship by Phiros who was confederate with the king of Babylon when he laid siege to Jerusalem. This man was a Grecian by birth, but who had given a kingdom in Spain. He became related by marriage to Espan, the nephew of king Heracles, Heracles later renounced his throne in preference for his native Greece, leaving his kingdom to his nephew, Espan, from whom the country of España took its name. Based upon their testimonies, this eponym would have already been in use in Spain by c.350 BCE, Iberia enters written records as a land populated largely by the Iberians, Basques and Celts. Early on its coastal areas were settled by Phoenicians who founded Western Europe´s most ancient cities Cadiz, Phoenician influence expanded as much of the Peninsula was eventually incorporated into the Carthaginian Empire, becoming a major theater of the Punic Wars against the expanding Roman Empire. After an arduous conquest, the peninsula came fully under Roman Rule, during the early Middle Ages it came under Germanic rule but later, much of it was conquered by Moorish invaders from North Africa. In a process took centuries, the small Christian kingdoms in the north gradually regained control of the peninsula. The last Moorish kingdom fell in the same year Columbus reached the Americas, a global empire began which saw Spain become the strongest kingdom in Europe, the leading world power for a century and a half, and the largest overseas empire for three centuries. Continued wars and other problems led to a diminished status. The Napoleonic invasions of Spain led to chaos, triggering independence movements that tore apart most of the empire, eventually democracy was peacefully restored in the form of a parliamentary constitutional monarchy. Spain joined the European Union, experiencing a renaissance and steady economic growth
Futbol Club Barcelona, commonly known as Barcelona and familiarly as Barça, is a professional football club based in Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain. Founded in 1899 by a group of Swiss, English and Catalan footballers led by Joan Gamper, unlike many other football clubs, the supporters own and operate Barcelona. It is the second most valuable team in the world, worth $3.56 billion. The official Barcelona anthem is the Cant del Barça, written by Jaume Picas, Barcelona was ranked first in the IFFHS Club World Ranking for 1997,2009,2011,2012 and 2015 and currently occupies the third position on the UEFA club rankings. The club has a rivalry with Real Madrid, matches between the two teams are referred to as El Clásico. Barcelona is one of the most supported teams in the world, Barcelonas players have won a record number of Ballon dOr awards, as well as a record number of FIFA World Player of the Year awards. Barcelona is one of three founding members of the Primera División that have never relegated from the top division, along with Athletic Bilbao. In 2011, the club became European champions again and won five trophies, by winning their fifth Champions League trophy on 6 June 2015, Barcelona became the first European club in history to achieve the continental treble twice. On 22 October 1899, Hans Gamper placed an advertisement in Los Deportes declaring his wish to form a football club, FC Barcelona had a successful start in regional and national cups, competing in the Campionat de Catalunya and the Copa del Rey. In 1902, the club won its first trophy, the Copa Macaya and he said in a meeting, Barcelona cannot die and must not die. If there is nobody who is going to try, then I will assume the responsibility of running the club now on. Club president on five occasions between 1908 and 1925, he spent 25 years in total at the helm. One of his achievements was ensuring Barça acquire its own stadium. On 14 March 1909, the moved into the Camp de la Indústria. To celebrate their new surroundings, the club conducted a logo contest the following year, Carles Comamala won the contest, and his suggestion became the crest that the club still wears – with some minor changes – as of the present day. The contest was the most prestigious in that era, from the inaugural year in 1910 to 1913, Barcelona won the competition four consecutive times. Carles Comamala played a part of the four-time champion, managing the side along with Amechazurra. The latter became the clubs first full-time coach in 1917, the last edition was held in 1914 in the city of Barcelona, which local rivals Espanyol won
Valencia Club de Fútbol are a Spanish football club based in Valencia. They play in La Liga and are one of the most successful and biggest clubs in Spanish football, Valencia have won six La Liga titles, seven Copa del Rey trophies, two Fairs Cups, one UEFA Cup, one UEFA Cup Winners Cup and two UEFA Super Cups. They also reached two UEFA Champions League finals in a row, losing to La Liga rivals Real Madrid in 2000, Valencia were also members of the G-14 group of leading European football clubs. In total, Valencia have reached seven major European finals, winning four of them, Valencia were founded in 1919 and have played their home games at the 55, 000-seater Mestalla since 1923. They were due to move into the new 75, 000-seater Nou Mestalla in the north-west of the city in 2013, Valencia have a fierce rivalry with fellow Valencian club Villarreal CF, with whom they contest the Derby de la Comunitat. The rivalry is fueled by the fact that they are the two most successful clubs in the region. They also have a rivalry with Levante UD, also located in the city of Valencia. Valencia is the third-most supported football club in Spain, behind heavyweights Real Madrid, over the years, the club has achieved a global reputation for their prolific youth academy, or cantera. Products of their academy include world-class talents such as Raúl Albiol, Andrés Palop, Miguel Ángel Angulo, David Albelda, Gaizka Mendieta, current stars of the game to have graduated in recent years include Isco, Jordi Alba, Juan Bernat, 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 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 matches at the Algirós ground since 7 December 1919. The first match at Mestalla pitted the side against Castellón Castalia. In another match the day after, Valencia won against the same opposition, Valencia 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. The Spanish Civil War halted the progress of the Valencia team until 1941, 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 title again in the 1943–44 season. In 1995 they lost 2012 they lost 6-1 to CD Binefar In the 1950s, 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 La Liga behind Barcelona. In the following season, the club won its third Copa del Rey, Valencia beat holders Barça 3–0 in the final in front of over 110,000 spectators at the Estadio Chamartín, then the home ground of Real Madrid
Real Madrid C.F.
Real Madrid Club de Fútbol, commonly known as Real Madrid, or simply as Real outside Spain frontiers, is a professional football club based in Madrid, Spain. Founded in 1902 as Madrid Football Club, the team has worn a white home kit since inception. The word Real is Spanish for Royal and was bestowed to the club by King Alfonso XIII in 1920 together with the crown in the emblem. The team has played its matches in the 85, 454-capacity Santiago Bernabéu Stadium in downtown Madrid since 1947. Unlike most European sporting entities, Real Madrids members have owned and operated the club throughout its history. The club was estimated to be worth €3.24 billion in 2015, the club is one of the most widely supported teams in the world. Real Madrid is one of three founding members of the Primera División that have never relegated from the top division, along with Athletic Bilbao. The club holds many long-standing rivalries, most notably El Clásico with Barcelona, Real Madrid established itself as a major force in both Spanish and European football during the 1950s, winning five consecutive European Cups and reaching the final seven times. This success was replicated in the league, where the club won five times in the space of seven years. In domestic football, the club has won a record 32 La Liga titles,19 Copa del Rey, nine Supercopa de España, a Copa Eva Duarte, and a Copa de la Liga. Real Madrid was recognised as the FIFA Club of the 20th Century on 23 December 2000, the club received the FIFA Centennial Order of Merit in 2004. The club is ranked first in the latest IFFHS Club World Ranking, setting a new ranking-points record, the club also leads the current UEFA club rankings. They founded Football Club Sky in 1897, playing on Sunday mornings at Moncloa and it split into two clubs in 1900, New Foot-Ball de Madrid and Madrid Football Club. On 6 March 1902, after a new Board presided by Juan Padrós had been elected, three years after its foundation, in 1905, Madrid FC won its first title after defeating Athletic Bilbao in the Spanish Cup final. The club became one of the sides of the Royal Spanish Football Federation on 4 January 1909. After moving between grounds the team moved to the Campo de ODonnell in 1912, in 1920, the clubs name was changed to Real Madrid after King Alfonso XIII granted the title of Real to the club. In 1929, the first Spanish football league was founded, Real Madrid led the first league season until the last match, a loss to Athletic Bilbao, meant they finished runners-up to Barcelona. Real Madrid won its first League title in the 1931–32 season, Real won the League again the following year, becoming the first team to have won the championship twice
Copa del Rey
The Copa del Rey is an annual football cup competition for Spanish football teams. Its full name is Campeonato de España - Copa de Su Majestad el Rey de Fútbol, the competition was founded in 1903, thus making it the oldest Spanish football competition. Typically, the winner of Copa del Rey goes to the UEFA Europa League, Barcelona are the current holders, who won their 28th Copa del Rey against Sevilla at the 2016 Copa del Rey Final held at the Vicente Calderón Stadium. Four other teams joined Madrid FC for the competition, FC Barcelona, Club Español de Foot-Ball, New Foot-Ball de Madrid and that cup is on display in the Athletic Bilbao museum and the club includes the victory in its honours list. Nevertheless, it is considered only the forerunner of the Copa del Rey, Copa del Rey was Spains football National Championship from 1903 until the foundation of the Campeonato de Liga — League Championship — in 1928. It was initially known as the Copa del Ayuntamiento de Madrid, between 1905 and 1932, it was known as the Copa de Su Majestad El Rey Alfonso XIII. Athletic Bilbao were declared winners in 1904 after their opponents Español de Madrid failed to show up. In 1937, during the Spanish Civil War, clubs in the Republican area of Spain entered the Copa de la España Libre, because of the dispute regarding the 1902 competition, the statistics regarding the leading winners are also disputed. Barcelona have won the Copa 28 times, Athletic Bilbao are just behind, with either 24 or 23 titles, throughout the history of the competition, there have been 12 actual trophies. Trophies have been awarded to clubs for winning the competition either three times in a row or on five separate occasions and for other special reasons. Thus, four trophies have been awarded to Barcelona, three to Bilbao and one to Real Madrid. In December 2010, the cup was given to Sevilla, the 2010 winners, before the formation of La Liga in 1929, the competition was effectively a national championship. Teams qualified to enter via their regional leagues, over the years, various formats, including group stages have been used. Unlike the English FA Cup, entry is limited, only teams from the Primera División, Segunda A, about 23 teams from the Segunda B and the Tercera División champions are invited to enter. The early rounds are one-off games with teams from the lower divisions given home advantage, the round of 32, the round of 16, the quarter-finals, and semi-finals are played over two legs. The final is a game played at a neutral venue. The winners qualify for both the Supercopa de España and the UEFA Europa League the following season. There had been a precedent for this, Real Madrid were allowed to keep the last Copa de la República, Sevilla, the first Copa del Generalísimo and, Atlético Madrid, a new trophy was made by Madrid jeweller Federico Alegre
Bilbao Athletic, officially named Athletic Club B is the reserve team of Athletic Bilbao, club based in Bilbao, in the autonomous community of Basque Country. The team will play in the Segunda División B in the 2016-17 season, founded in 1964, the team holds home matches at the San Mamés, with a 53, 500-seat capacity, or at the small stadium attached to the clubs training facility at Lezama. Reserve teams in Spain play in the football pyramid as their senior team rather than a separate league. However, reserves cannot play in the division as their senior team. Therefore, Bilbao Athletic are ineligible for promotion to La Liga, reserve teams are also no longer permitted to enter the Copa del Rey. In addition, only players, or under-25 with a professional contract. In recent years most of Bilbao Athletics players have been graduates from the youth setup via the farm team. This team was put together at the suggestion of José Antonio Aguirre, the team went on tour to raise funds for the Basque cause, and also played in Europe and Mexico. However, the Campeonato de Vicaya continued to be played, with their best players on tour with the Basque national team, Athletic Bilbao could only field weakened sides and, as a result, chose to enter under the name Bilbao Athletic. Despite this, they won the championship, the clubs name was derived from the two clubs that merged in 1903 to become Athletic Bilbao – Bilbao Football Club and Athletic Club. The name was revived in 1964, when Athletic Bilbao decided to establish a team with Agustín Gaínza as coach. The new Bilbao Athletic initially played in regional leagues before winning promotion to Tercera División in 1966, under Rafa Iriondo. Bilbao Athletic dropped back down to the level in 1996. After 19 seasons in the Segunda División B, Bilbao Athletic returned to the second tier after defeating Cádiz CF, 3–1 on aggregate, Athletic successfully applied to compete in the 2014–15, 2015–16 and 2016–17 versions of the England-based Premier League International Cup. Most of Athletics players in this Under-23 tournament have been drawn from Bilbao Athletic with some additions from Basconia, players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality. Biscay Championships, 1938–39 Segunda División B, 1982–83, 1988–89 Tercera División, 1966–67, 1968–69 For playing big matches, they use San Mamés, CD Basconia Team history at Athletic Bilbaos official website Futbolme team profile La Cantera De Lezama - Unofficial website focusing on Athletic’s youth teams