What follows may not be entirely coherent. What I mean by that is I have no intention of arranging Villarreal notables in any sort of fashion that fits within the overarching narrative, and being labeled as a Sith Lord isn’t necessarily a bad thing. I am not sure what the overlap is in the Venn diagram between people who love football and people and love Star Wars, but I’m in it. Don’t expect much from episodes VII-IX of the Skywalker Saga, I’m focusing only on the good movies. May the Fourth be with you.
Santi Cazorla as Luke Skywalker
As the old generation of Jedi, or, in our case, Villarreal heroes, fades into obscurity, a New Hope steps onto the seen as Santi Cazorla offers a new era of peace and prosperity. Tragically, he makes his move (to Arsenal) before the time is right and his career nearly ends before he can fulfill his destiny. Recovered from the injuries he sustained, he returns to the path of the (yellow) Light and good triumphs over evil.
Sr. Roig as Jedi Master Yoda
Instrumental in both the glories of the pre-Empire Republic when the Jedi were peacekeepers of the galaxy and also in the successes of a post (relegation) Empire galaxy, without Yoda, the Jedi would have no chance at succeeding in their aims. He is the wisest of all the Jedi Masters and when he isn’t listened to, things go bad in a hurry.
Marcelino as Darth Vader
YOU WERE THE CHOSEN ONE! To leave Villarreal and go to Valencia is as close to a turn to the Dark Side as I can imagine. An incredibly gifted manager who had issues with the Jedi counsel, err I mean board of directors, it may not be entirely his fault that he turned, but seeing him lift a Copa Del Rey trophy with the Bats knowing what could have been here at Villarreal particularly hurt.
Aixa Salvador as Ahsoka Tano
A little bit of a deeper cut here, Ahsoka was Anakin Skywalker’s padawan during the tv show ‘Clone Wars’ who goes on to be instrumental in the early days of the Rebellion against the Empire and (reportedly) will also be in The Mandalorian season two. Aixa has the potential to be one of the best players in Spain and is key to the hopes of the women’s first team reaching the top flight. Just as the early Rebels needed Ahsoka, we need Aixa and her goal-scoring talents.
Diego Forlan as Mace Windu
Mace Windu, as a character, practices a form of lightsaber combat that teeters between the light and dark sides of the Force, but his attacking style is as deadly as it gets. Forlan occupies a similar space, doing the unimaginable in giving Villarreal a Pichichi winner but also leaving for Atleti... leaving legacy that teeters between light and dark.
Riquelme as Han Solo
While Riquelme’s abilities with a football seem Force aided, his style of play defies the structure generally associated with the Jedi Order. He was the pilot of the Villarreal ship that may not have looked like much but was one of the fastest and most spectacular performers in the galaxy (or Champions League, as the case may be). An absolute legend.
Ramiro Funes Mori as Jar Jar Binks
Ramiro is constantly on the edge of catastrophe, much like Jar Jar. That said, from time to time he blunders into something incredibly useful for the good guys, and so while he was exiled from the Gungans (which in itself is an interesting Everton analogy) he has stuck around on our side.
Pau Torres as Ezra Bridger
If you’ve seen ‘Star Wars: Rebels”, you know Ezra is a young Force Wielding superstar that saves the rebellion from the clutches of Admiral Thrawn. If that sentence just deeply confused you and you have no idea what I’m talking about, I warned you ahead of time that I might be alone in this part of the Venn diagram.
Bruno as Chewbacca
Chewbacca never gets enough credit. He doesn’t speak Basic so everyone assumes he’s dumb, but the guy is friends with Yoda, over 200 years old (starting to see where I’m getting the comparison?) and is constantly reliable even when he doesn’t get as much glory as certain other characters (sorry, players). They don’t even give the poor guy a medal in Episode IV when he has just as much to do with destroying the Death Star as Han does! Likewise, Bruno has never quite gotten the shine of other club legends but he probably deserves it.
So, how did I do?
If you don’t follow Star Wars at all and you made it this far, I appreciate it. If you have watched the main Star Wars movies but don’t have my appreciation for the television shows, I apologize, but keep in mind I could have made a lot of book and video game references as well, so you’re welcome.
What did I miss? What Star Wars characters would you compare to our Villarreal heroes?