José Manuel Llaneza, tribute to excellence and love for Villarreal CF

The vice president was one of the great architects of the successful project of the yellow club

Villarreal CF has celebrated a beautiful tribute in memory of José Manuel Llaneza, vice president, manager and director of the yellow club for 28 years, exactly one year after his loss.

From now on, and officially, the Ciudad Deportiva will carry his club, in honor of his unforgettable figure and excellent work in the history of the Submarine.

José Manuel Llaneza, the soul of Villarreal CF

José Manuel Llaneza (Puçol, July 20, 1948) is one of the great architects of the brilliant history of Villarreal CF. The Valencian manager served as manager, CEO and vice president during his 28 years with the club.

In May 1994, he landed in Vila-real with the help of Pascual Font de Mora, former president of the entity. He arrived to serve as manager and take charge of a humble club that, at that time, was experiencing a good sporting moment and was playing in the Second Division.

With Llaneza at the helm, the club becomes professional and stabilizes at a key moment, in which the entity has just become a Sports Public Limited Company (SAD). Three years after his arrival, in 1997, due to Font de Mora’s illness, the then yellow manager convinced Fernando Roig to take charge of the club.

Thanks to the good work of José Manuel Llaneza, a new project was born that, with the crucial arrival of Roig, aspired to what at that time seemed impossible: promotion to the First Division. Just as Font de Mora did, Roig placed all his trust in Llaneza, so that he could continue leading the reins of Villarreal CF.

With the leadership of the Valencian president, Villarreal was promoted to the First Division and established itself as a reference club in Spain and Europe. In 2010, after more than 15 years at the head of management, he became vice president of the club, a position he held until his death in 2022.

With Llaneza on the grogueta board, Villarreal CF achieved international recognition based on sporting successes. The UEFA Europa League title won in Poland (2021) was the finishing touch to the club’s excellent career and the culmination of the fantastic project of the Roig and José Manuel Llaneza family. Among his great achievements are also two UEFA Champions League semi-finals (2006 and 2022) and a LaLiga runner-up finish (2008).

José Manuel Llaneza’s contribution to Villarreal CF far transcends the sporting level. With the help of Fernando Roig, he promoted important reforms in the old El Madrigal, currently known as Estadio de la Cerámica, until it became one of the most modern and avant-garde fiefdoms in European football.

In addition, he led the construction of the Sports City, which now bears his name as a tribute. A high-performance center for the first team, which also promotes the development of the youth teams, which he turned into the cornerstone of the club’s ambitious project.

With his impeccable work and faithful dedication throughout his immaculate career at Villarreal, José Manuel Llaneza earned the respect, affection and admiration of the world of football. His great work was recognized on countless occasions. He received the Villarreal CF Gold Badge in 2016, the Gold Medal of the Valencian Community Football Federation in 2020 and the Gold Medal of the city of Vila-real in 2022.

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