Villarreal CF has launched a program for its growing legions of fans around the world. In spite of relegation to the Spanish second division, the club's outreach around Europe and in China has spawned a surge of interest from foreign supporters' clubs. Villarreal USA was an early adopter, if you will.
The "Yo Soy Groguet" card, in homage to the team's mysterious-looking mascot, is a new attempt to include foreign fans in the club's day-to-day activities. The benefits include a welcome pack, free match ticket, online coupons, and a subscription to a new weekly e-newsletter.
You can learn more about the card here and purchase one here. At €25 annually (plus shipping and handling), the cost is a bit steep for a fan an ocean away from El Madrigal. On the other hand, you could consider it an investment in the club -- like the previously offered shares. A cheaper package without a match ticket is a thought for next season.
The club also reduced prices for the remainder of the season to boost attendance at El Madrigal. Since the move, we have beaten Mirandés and drawn Murcia and Lugo at home. Fan support has been vocal, if not widespread, and that remained so in the face of a heavy downpour against the pimentoneros. And the team's play has improved.
Overall, the club is trying to capture new audiences through a variety of techniques. "Yo Soy Groguet" may not be perfect, but it is a step in the right direction. I have confidence the program will be even better next season, just like the ticket provisions for the unemployed in the province of Castellón. Endavant Villarreal!