The Albiol legacy continues at Miralcamp
The Albiol legacy continues at Miralcamp

Romeo, son of the Yellows’ centre-back, and his nephew Thiago are being trained at the Yellows Academy

The Albiol family breathes football. Raúl has reached his prime with Villarreal, achieving great successes such as winning the Europa League and reaching the semi-finals of the Champions League. The experienced centre-back has played for different elite teams until arriving at Vila-real, where he feels at ease and identified with the values of the club. His brother Miguel was also a professional player. He played for Valencia, Recreativo de Huelva, Rayo Vallecano and Real Murcia, where he retired. Now, his son Romeo, in the U10s, and nephew Thiago, in the U16s, are being trained in the Yellow Academy, following their parents’ footsteps.

Despite knowing the beautiful game like few others, the Albiol brothers do not interfere in the work of the Yellows’ youth coaches and leave it to them to shape the future of the Albiol stars. “I don’t give him advice as such, but sometimes we analyse what happened in the game, but just to talk about football. Here in the Academy, their coaches are already in charge of that,” explains Miguel Albiol.

For his part, the Submarine captain says that he talks to Romeo “a bit to get his view on how they train and how they play and to get his opinion, as they are the ones who are on the pitch and are growing every day. “It’s good to see how the kids are improving, that’s what’s important, that they improve, have fun and make friends.

Both have adapted perfectly to the Yellows Academy, where they enjoy training and competing week after week. I had doubts if he was going to adapt well because it was the first football school where he was going, but we are delighted from the first day with his teammates and his coaches. He sees that he is improving day by day and that also serves as motivation for him,” says the man who scored the second goal against Arsenal in the Europa League semi-finals.

On the other hand, “Thiago went through another academy before, but because of his footballing profile and the club’s methodology, he adapts perfectly and they also train him as a person,” says Miguel. “I tell him to make the most of every day here, however long it lasts, because it will be useful for his future in any field,” adds the former footballer.

A methodology that appeals to the elite

The philosophy and style of play practised by the teams at the José Manuel Llaneza Training Ground tends to please the Villarreal players. At Miralcamp, the children of great Submarine legends such as Marcos Senna, Mariano Barbosa, Igor Tasevski, Rodolfo Arruabarrena, Carlos Bacca and César Sánchez, among others, have passed through the ranks. Other ex-footballers such as Pepe Alcaide, now Villarreal B analyst, also enrol their children in the Yellow Academy.

The Albiol family’s fun challenges

At the interview meeting, the four members of the Albiol family took part in two challenges that can be seen this week on Villarreal CF’s social networks. Firstly, they faced a fun quiz challenge in which the young players of the Yellow Academy were tested on how much they knew about their parents’ sporting careers by answering whether the statement was true or false. Afterwards, the pairs Miguel-Thiago and Raúl-Romeo played a mini-match in which the Yellows’ captain and his son won.