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La perspectiva del Cultural y Deportiva Leonesa - with El Periscopio (20th July, 2017)

You can follow El Periscopio (aka Fernando Díez) on Twitter here.

A bit about yourself and your background

I'm a Spanish lawyer, 36 years old, married and in love with sports in general!

How long have you been a fan of Cultural Leonesa and what made you support them in the first place?

Since the 1994-95 season, in the Third Spanish division. I went to the stadium with some classmates, and from the first moment I saw them I felt that this was my team.

Describe your first experience of watching Cultural Leonesa play?

My first experience was the feeling that this team represented me, me and my people, my city, my culture… everything.

To an outsider - how would you describe Cultural Leonesa's playing style, what it means to be a fan of the club, and what it means to be a player of the club?

Rubén de la Barrera is a very young coach, and his style is very attractive. The team moves the ball very fast, and the attack players move his position very often.

This style is new at the club, but is so attractive that every fan enjoys it.

Describe the importance and significance of a game against Ponferradina - what do you think would be the key differences between a Cultural Leonesa and a Ponferradina fan?

It is a historical confrontation, but most of the years the Cultural has been above, and now the situation is normal again.

I don´t think there are big differences between the two fans, we have the same culture and the same geographical situation. The only difference is the team, a very important difference, of course!

There was a time when Cultural Leonesa looked dead in the water. However, they are now in the Segunda for the first time in over 40 years, and are, for once, in a higher division that Ponferradina. How would you describe the last few seasons for Cultural Leonesa fans? 

There was a time when we all thought the club was going to disappear, and we assimilated it. Miraculously, the team survived in the fourth Spanish division, and was able to ascend with several local players, before the arrival of Aspire.

For the fans, the last few years have been a rebirth, come out of hell and touch the heaven with hands. A dream come true.

What is your opinion on the utilization of the youth teams? How would you rate the opportunities that youth players get in the first team?

At our team, it is very difficult, because the youth team is in a very low division, and the young players don't have the minimum level to play in the first team.

I know that the club and Aspire both want to rearm the young teams, and in a few years make possible that young players can reach the first team if they are of sufficient level.

List some things you appreciate and some things you can’t stand about the club management. 

The first thing I appreciate is the arrival of Aspire to our team. Aspire has provided technical and economic resources, and its arrival has helped to achieve the greatest success in 42 years. That is priceless.

What I dislike is that many mistakes have been made in the partner campaign, organizational and communication failures, but it is normal for a team that has grown so much in such a short time.

The overall result is very positive, no doubt.

The most famous ultra group at Cultural Leonesa is the Frente Leonés. How would you describe them and their political affiliations? What is the feeling of fans of Cultural Leonesa and of other clubs towards them?

The Frente Leonés no longer exists, disappeared about 10 years ago. Their political affiliations were nationalist and extreme right.

The feeling of the fans was not good towards them. Now the atmosphere is more positive!

Any other notable ultras or fan groups that are worth mentioning?

Triperos del Fondo Sur, Grupo Guzmán “El Bueno”, El León Rampante, Toribio Morán, Culturalistas en Madrid… several groups, especially after the ascent.

All are peaceful groups, the only ultra group that exists is Orgullo Cazurro.

How would you contrast the "Cultural Leonesa fan experience" under the Qatari ownership as compared to before that? Do you think the criticisms levied against this board - particularly the one about bringing multiple Qatari players to the club - are fair or unfair? 

They are unfair, and in the minority. At first, due to lack of knowledge, there were fears that 6 or 7 players would arrive every year to the first team, but experience has shown that Aspire respects the team's identity, while forming their young players in the young teams at the same time.

Is there something that the media doesn't (or maybe doesn't want to) talk about Cultural Leonesa that you think is worth mentioning? 

No, with the ascent the promotion of the media has grown a lot, and every small detail becomes a new story. This is a new world for us, and it´s marvelous.

Your thoughts on the season ahead?

We want to enjoy the competition. We know it will be difficult but we trust de la Barrera and his people to achieve salvation without suffering too much.




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