Villarreal over the last 20 years: What are Villarreal?
“Go into life with low expectations: that way you’re never disappointed”. Many Villarreal fans will see that as negative quote but in a way it sums of Villarreal’s rise and fall over the years. The recent article on Calleja brought an interesting debate on Villarreal USA fans’ expectations.
Villarreal over the last 20 years can only be described as a mediocre side. We have been in the top 4 with and without European football 5 times. The rest of the seasons we have been up and down like a yo yo on a swing. To say we are a stable club always within the top 4 is wrong. Every year fans demand top 4 finishes and expensive players however Villarreal is not that kind of club.
Managers leading us to victory or sinking the submarine
Over the last 2 decades we have had various managers and squads. Our most successful period would be under Manuel Pellegrini where we achieved 3rd place in 2004 -2005 and 2nd place 2007-8. The fact Pellegrini went onto a massive success at other clubs is a tribute to himself rather than Villarreal or the squad. Since then were have not even come close to that success. Marcelino had a good run with 3 seasons within the top 6 but up until the nada whether that's trophies or stability.
Leicester City F.C a prime example of what was considered a “ mediocre” side and had a lot of success from it. They were up and down sometimes top 8 sometimes relegation zone. They then go onto win the Primer League in 2014-15. Not through over spending like United, Chelsea and City do. Villarreal and Leicester sign the right players and progressively over the years raise up the table. They have ups and downs but that is how they have success through progressive building.
Future of Villarreal and its reigns
You look at 2 of the best managers in the world Mourinho and Guardiola both are struggling at their clubs currently. Plenty of money in their squads, with consistent success in the past but now it appears the mediocre squads are winning in the long run. It is a clear warning that even with a new manger , it seems very unlikely that Villarreal will be pushing top 4 anytime soon. Calleja may not be the man to lead Villarreal forward looking at former “mediocre” squads like Liverpool and the current success of former players like Lampard and Solskjaer, you can see why Calleja retains the faith of the board.
From a pundits point of view I would love to see Pellegrini back. He is one of my favorite mangers of all time not just at Villarreal. Bad runs since City but would love him back. Many of Villarreal fans are calling for Callleja’s head for a variety of different reasons. Could Villarreal really emulate Leicester’s success under a new coach? Could anyone really do much better than Calleja?. Let us know your suggestions below.