Writer: Barry Worthington
Date:Thursday June 30 2011
Wigan Athletic manager Roberto Martinez has been speaking about the Latics forthcoming glamour friendly against La Liga side and Champions League qualifiers Villarreal.
The game is scheduled to take place at the DW Stadium on Sunday August 7th with a 4pm kick-off and will be the Latics last preseason game before the Premier League starts with the visit of Norwich six days later.
Speaking to Latics Player, Martinez couldn't help but draw comparisons between Villarreal and the Latics, both have made the top flight league of their respective country's against the odds, small town clubs competing with the big boys, Martinez also is a big admirer of the way that Villarreal have built their club over the past few years.
Only formed in 1923 most of Villarreal's years have been spent in the third tier of Spanish football, gaining promotion to La Liga for the first time in 1998, since the 2000/01 season they have established themselves as La Liga mainstays and a force to be reckoned with in both Spanish and European football
Speaking to Latics Player Martinez said: "Villarreal is a great opportunity to finish our preparations in the preseason, we have certain targets to reach and whatever the result, Villarreal are going to help us to do that"
"Villarreal is a very good football club, they are a great model with the way they work and we can draw some comparisons with ourselves with the way they have grown over the past 10 to 15 years"
"There are about 40,000 people living in Villarreal and that helps to put into perspective the achievement of the football club, they provide a football model that is encouraging for anyone"
"The way that they work with their youth set up, they have three feeder teams to the first team and a very strong scouting network in South America where they attract very young players and work with them"
"When they get them into the first team they realise the value of their assets and then re-invest the money they get for them, they have been doing this for a little while and very successfully"
"It's a great model with a great stability and consistency and this is similar to our club"
"Villarreal picked up the nickname El Submarino Amarillo or 'Yellow Submarine' from the period when they were yo-yoing between La Liga and the segunda division, they were getting relegated, coming back up
"Now they are more a stratospheric type of team and they don't deserve that nickname anymore"
For information on all the Latics preseason friendlies visit www.wigan-latics.com/friendlies
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Date:Thursday June 30 2011
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