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Valmiera Football Club or shortly Valmiera FC is a Latvian football club, playing in the Virslīga, the highest division of Latvian football. The club is based in the city of Valmiera. By winning the 2017 Latvian First League, the team was promoted to the 2018 Virslīga after a 14-year absence.
|Full name||Valmiera Football Club|
|Ground||Jānis Daliņš Stadium, Valmiera, Latvia|
A predecessor of the club and the main team of the city of Valmiera from 1978 to 1993 was FK Gauja Valmiera, which won the final Football Championship of the Latvian SSR in 1990 and continued in the top flight after the restoration of the independence of Latvia. However, after the 1993 Virslīga season Gauja was relegated and slowly declined, disbanding in the mid-1990s while playing in the 2. līga.
The current club was founded in 1996 as Valmieras FK (Valmieras futbola klubs). It participated in the 1. līga (the second-highest division of Latvian football). The team finished second in the league which gave Valmiera the possibility to battle with the second from bottom team of the Higher League – Skonto-Metāls for a place in the top division of Latvian football. In the first game in Riga Skonto-Metāls won 1:0, but at home Valmiera overcame the one goal deficit and won 2:0 (I. Maļukovs, Dz. Savaļnieks), thus earning a place in the Virslīga.
In its debut season in the Virslīga Valmiera managed to finish 7th out of 9 teams with a comfortable margin over the two weakest teams. The following season was even more successful as the team finished 5th in Virslīga, and the same result was repeated in 1999. The new millennium brought financial difficulties for FK Valmiera. After the 2003 season the team had to leave the Virslīga because of financial difficulties and since then played in the 1. līga, paying more attention to developing young talent.
For more than ten years Valmiera was a mid level team in the 1. līga. Since 2010, under manager Gatis Ērglis a number of young local players experienced rapid development and the team became one of the leaders of the 1. līga. In 2016 the sports organisation was established as "SO Valmiera Glass / Vidzemes Augstskola" or "Valmiera Glass ViA" - taking the name of the team's long-time sponsor Valmiera Fiberglass and Vidzeme University, which inherited the legacy of Valmiera football. Also joining Valmiera Glass ViA was the school's basketball club. In 2017 the team's best scorers were Alvis Dubovs and Niks Savaļnieks, helping Valmiera Glass ViA to win the Latvian First League with a ten-point margin.
In 2018, Valmiera Glass ViA returned to the Virslīga. One of the biggest offseason deals for the team was the return of Gatis Kalniņš to his hometown, but sadly the veteran striker was mostly sidelined due to injuries. The team struggled in amidst fierce competition and earned only one point in the first ten rounds of the league. That led to the decision to replace long time manager Ērglis with Ukrainian coach Nikolay Trubachov (Mykola Trubachov). In 2019, he was replaced by Georgian coach Tamaz Pertia.
League and Cup historyEdit
- FK Valmiera / Valmiera Glass ViA / Valmiera FC
|Season||Division (Name)||Pos./Teams||Latvian Football Cup|
|1999||1st (Virslīga)||5/(8)||1/4 finals|
|2000||1st (Virslīga)||6/(8)||1/4 finals|
|2001||1st (Virslīga)||6/(8)||1/4 finals|
|2002||1st (Virslīga)||5/(8)||1/4 finals|
|2003||1st (Virslīga)||6/(8)||1/8 finals|
|2004||2nd (1.līga)||7/(14)||1/16 finals|
|2005||2nd (1.līga)||6/(14)||1/8 finals|
|2006||2nd (1.līga)||7/(16)||1/8 finals|
|2007||2nd (1.līga)||10/(16)||3rd round|
|2008||2nd (1.līga)||7/(15)||Did not participate|
|2009||2nd (1.līga)||11/(14)||Not held|
|2010||2nd (1.līga)||6/(12)||Did not participate|
|2011||2nd (1.līga)||9/(13)||1/4 finals|
|2012||2nd (1.līga)||8/(14)||1/8 finals|
|2013||2nd (1.līga)||3/(16)||3rd round|
|2014||2nd (1.līga)||3/(16)||1/8 finals|
|2015||2nd (1.līga)||2/(16)||1/8 finals|
|2016||2nd (1.līga)||4/(15)||1/32 finals|
|2017||2nd (1.līga)||1/(12)||1/8 finals|
|2019||1st (Virslīga)||4/(9)||1/8 finals|
As of 27 August 2020
|2020–21||UEFA Europa League||1QR||Lech Poznań||N/A||0−3||N/A|
- QR: Qualifying round
- As of 24 August 2020
Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.
- DELFI (2008-02-25). "'Futbols pilsētā': Valmieras futbola vēsture". DELFI (in Latvian). Retrieved 2018-09-27.
- ""Valmieras FK" Ērgļa vadībā gatavojas sezonai". Sportacentrs.com (in Latvian). 2010-03-02. Retrieved 2018-09-27.
- "We are on the ball in supporting young footballers - VALMIERA GLASS GROUP". www.valmiera-glass.com. Retrieved 2018-09-27.
- "Sport and activities at Vidzeme University of Applied Sciences". Vidzeme University of Applied Sciences. Retrieved 2018-09-27.
- "Kalniņš atgriežas dzimtajā pilsētā un pievienojas Virslīgas jaunpienācējai". Sportacentrs.com (in Latvian). 2018-02-19. Retrieved 2018-09-27.
- "Virslīgas pastarīti "Valmieru" trenēs ukraiņu speciālists Trubačovs, asistēs Kalniņš". Sportacentrs.com (in Latvian). 2018-05-30. Retrieved 2018-09-27.
- "Kluba paziņojums par nosaukuma maiņu Valmiera FC". Optibet Virslīga / Futbola Virslīga (in Latvian). Retrieved 2020-09-20.
- "Futbola klubs "VALMIERA GLASS VIA" maina nosaukumu uz "Valmiera FC" - VALMIERA GLASS GRUPA" (in Latvian). 2020-02-17. Retrieved 2020-09-20.
- "VALMIERA GLASS VIA futbols » Komanda". www.vgvia.lv (in Latvian). Retrieved 2018-09-27.