Columbus Crew SC today announced the club will host six-time La Liga champions Valencia CF in an international friendly on Wednesday, May 27 at MAPFRE Stadium as part of the LFP World Challenge. It will be the first time in club history that the Black and Gold have faced Spanish opposition in an international friendly.
Per the press release: In its storied history, Valencia has won seven Copa del Rey titles and a Spanish SuperCup as well as the UEFA Cup. The friendly clash against the Spanish topflight side is classified as Special Match A for Crew SC Full Season Ticket Members and is included in their membership.
Valencia currently sits in fourth place in the Spanish Premier League behind Barcelona, Real Madrid, and Athletic Madrid. Los Che, as the side is affectionately known, is one of only four teams to win La Liga since 2000, as well as winning seven Copa del Rey tournaments (Spain's equivalent to the U.S. Open Cup), and one UEFA Cup.
"We are looking forward to competing against one of the top teams in Spain at MAPFRE Stadium. Valencia is an exciting team with a lot of young, talented players and it's going to be a great test for our group," head coach Gregg Berhalter said in the press release. "I also have a personal connection to the club after visiting the club last year. I was impressed by the warmth and professionalism of the people. The respect goes so far that we brought Nico Estevez, a longtime coach from their youth and professional environments, to work with our Academy players full-time in Columbus as Crew SC's Director of Methodology."
"MAPFRE Stadium has long been the site for captivating international matches and we are pleased to welcome Valencia CF to Central Ohio for this match," Crew SC President of Business Operations Andy Loughnane said in the press release. "The friendly marks an exciting new chapter in our club's and our venue's history as we host a team from Spain for the first time, a side with rich history. There is a strong interest in the global game in Columbus and we are excited to offer our fans the chance to see their favorite club battle topflight talent."