How To Choose a La Liga Team To Support (That Isn’t Real Madrid or Barcelona)

Most people become fans of the Spanish league without having a team of their own to root for. They’ll tune into the coverage from afar and slowly begin to understand the differences between the Spanish league’s top tier and the premier competition in their home country. And differences there are: some people say that La Liga is the best league in the world, and there’s certainly a case to be made for that. There’s also a case to be made against that assessment too. But that’s a conversation for another day.

While you may begin your Spanish football adventure as merely a fan of the league, at some point, you’ll want to consider picking a single team to support. This will help you dive deeper into the league and help make matchdays more exciting.

The issue is deciding which team to pick, especially if you’re opposed to following the crowd and supporting Real Madrid or Barcelona. They’ve got enough fans: pick someone new! In this blog, we’ll take a look at some useful tips that’ll help you to choose the team that’s right for you.

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The Tried and Tested Method

If you’re completely lost about which team to make your own, then take a more direct route. Take a look at what sport is on today, and try to catch a game on television. Many people have found their lifelong club just by switching on the box. You might just find that you’re naturally drawn to one team, for reasons that aren’t entirely clear. It could be one key player that catches your eye, or the intensity of the support, or even just the team’s kit’s colours. Ultimately, it doesn’t matter how you become a fan of a club — what counts is that you stick with the side through thick and thin.

The Other Big Hitters

We’re pushing people away from Real Madrid and Barcelona in this blog because, well, they’ve already got enough fans, and doesn’t it make it a little more interesting to support a team where trophies are a bonus, not an expectation? We think so.

Still, if you’re one of those people that at least wants their side to be in contention for trophies, then you should consider one of the other big sides in the league. The biggest club after the big two is Atlético Madrid; in fact, they’re so big that we could have reasonably named this blog ‘How To Choose a La Liga Team To Support (That Isn’t Real Madrid or Barcelona or Atlético Madrid),’ but we didn’t. So feel free. Perhaps the biggest barrier for football purists will be the manager, Diego Simone. People either love him or hate him.

If you’re looking for teams on the next rung of the ladder, then Sevilla, Villarreal, and Real Sociedad are all sides that could potentially pick up a trophy, if the cards fall in their favour.

The Small Boys

The same teams do seem to win things over and over again. If you’re a fan of underdog teams, or just like to put yourself through misery, then you could consider supporting one of the smaller teams in the league. Any of the sides towards the bottom of the table will do, but we have to give Eibar a special mention. They’re a club that’ll appeal to the romantics out there. They’ve got no hope of winning a trophy, but you’ll be content to be a fan. The support base is small (average attendance: 6,000), but what makes them stand out is that they’re fan-owned. Some 8000 people across the world have a stake in the club. They’re an inspiration and will appeal to football fans who are a little sick of the huge sums of money that flow in and out of the big clubs.

Photo by Pixabay

Home Club Connections

If you’ve got a primary club that you support, you could identify a Spanish La Liga club with connections to that side. Liverpool fans took an interest in Real Sociedad after former player Xabi Alonso became a star for Liverpool; the same goes for Valencia, who ex-reds manager Rafael Benitez managed before taking the top job at Anfield. Does your club have a connection to La Liga, either through a player, manager, or memorable game? Then they could be the team for you.

La Liga is littered with special clubs that aren’t called Real Madrid or Barcelona. Fly the flag for a less obvious choice, and you’ll get plenty of props from fellow La Liga followers!