Featherstone Chief Executive Davide Longo believes the newly-formed Valencia Huracanes has the potential to be a real success story for rugby league.
The Spanish side were heavily beaten 102-14 by Rovers in their first-ever match at Villajoyosa’s El Campo del Pantano, 20 minutes from Benidorm.
The build-up to the game was shrouded in some mystery, but the Huracanes eventually fielded a squad made mostly from Spanish domestic players.
Salford loanee Connor Aspey scored the club’s first try, while Miguel Tomas Enriqe became the first Spanish domestic player to cross early in the second half.
The game was watched by over 500 fans – including over 300 travelling Rovers supporters – and Huracanes are now looking to gain entry into Betfred League 1 in time for the 2021 season.
Speaking after the contest, Longo said: “It’s been brilliant. I’ve been stood with the CEO of Valencia Huracanes [Dean Buchan] and all we’ve been talking about all day is about rugby league.
“This is what it’s all about. It’s not about the scoreline, it’s about Valencia Huracanes.
“We’re supporting their brand in a region where I believe there are a lot of rugby league people living.”
Aside from the Huracanes, their CEO Dean Buchan has also been appointed as Chief Executive of the Spanish Rugby League Association. One of his first tasks is to try and develop a new domestic competition in the country.
Rovers CEO Longo insists that that the Valencia project will be a real positive for the sport, despite scepticism from some.
“Do I believe it’s going to be a success? Absolutely,” he said. “This region has got the ability to be a great success, not just for the people who live around here but away travellers [too].
“Our fans have come in their numbers and every one of them has absolutely been delighted by what they’ve received during this trip.”