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Portland Timbers to Host La Liga's Valencia May 23rd

Well, Merritt Paulson has been teasing us for weeks about the upcoming exhibition games and now we know exactly who one of them are: Valencia of Spain's top division La Liga! I know some of you were clamoring for Villa Real, but really Valencia is a much better team in the current La Liga season and will, hopefully, provide a much more enjoyable experience for all.

The exhibition itself is scheduled for May 23rd at 7:30 PM. No word yet on whether it will be broadcast anywhere or not.

As expected, everybody with season tickets will be able to attend this game under the Exhibition B ticket. For those without season tickets, you can buy yourself one starting at $25. The tickets go on sale March 30th at 10:00 am.

I don't personally have a lot of experience with La Liga (I'm a Bundesliga guy) so if anybody wants to chime in about some of their notable players or the team itself I'm sure we'd all be very much appreciative.

Otherwise, find the full press release after the jump.

PORTLAND, Ore. — The Portland Timbers today announced that the club will play host to accomplished Spanish club Valencia CF in an international exhibition Wednesday, May 23, at JELD-WEN Field; kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m.

Tickets for the friendly against the top-flight Spanish side are included in full-season ticket packages as Exhibition B. Members of the Timbers’ Season Ticket Waiting List will have access to an exclusive pre-sale period to purchase tickets, starting Wednesday, March 28, at 10 a.m.

Single-game tickets, starting at $25, go on sale to the public Friday, March 30, at 10 a.m. through the JELD-WEN Field box office, area Ticketmaster locations, online at or by phone at (800) 745-3000.

Valencia, which competes in Spain’s first-division La Liga, is one of the most successful clubs in Spanish football, having won six La Liga championships, and is a seven-time winner of the Copa del Rey, Spain’s annual domestic cup competition. In the past 10 seasons, Valencia has won two league titles (2001-02, 2003-04) and claimed the Copa del Rey in 2008. Founded in 1919, Valencia first joined La Liga in 1931.

Also regarded as one of Europe’s top clubs, Valencia has five UEFA trophies to its credit and has been a regular participant and contender in Europe’s elite club tournaments. Valencia has made nine appearances in the UEFA Champions League, including six in the last nine seasons, and reached the tournament’s final in back-to-back seasons in 1999-2000 and 2000-2001. Additionally, Valencia won both the Europa League title and the UEFA Super Cup in 2004. In total, Valencia has reached seven major European finals in its history, winning four of them.

Led by head coach Unai Emery, who has managed the team since 2008, Valencia reached the group stage of the 2011-2012 UEFA Champions League. In league play, Valencia currently ranks third in the La Liga table behind FC Barcelona and first-place Real Madrid. Defender Jordi Alba and forward Roberto Soldado both featured for Spain’s national team recently, with Soldado scoring three goals in a 5-0 win over Venezuela on Feb. 29. Currently, Soldado ranks among La Liga leaders in goal-scoring with 15 goals.