Sporting Clube Farense are aiming for success both on the football pitch and in the local community.
In May, Sporting Clube Farense (Farense) secured promotion back into the top tier of Portuguese football and, this year will be lining up against the likes of Benfica, Sporting Lisbon, and Porto. They’ll also be renewing their rivalry with Portimonense, the only other Algarvian team competing at the elite level. As important as the season will be on the football pitch, Farense – known by their supporters as the ‘Lions of Faro’ – will also be continuing their excellent work in the local community.
The Lions are a club which are embedded in the community and not solely the immediate locality of Faro. The club sponsors Clube de Ciclismo de Tavira, one of the most popular and successful cycling clubs in the Algarve. They also have a walking football team (for players of 50 years and more), a basketball team, a futsal team, and even an Esports (video games) team. In May this year, the club won an award from Premeira Liga, for their exceptional work in the community: their players often visit schools and attend workshops, educating local children about the club and the importance of living a healthy lifestyle. The club also works closely with Refood Faro, donating food and equipment.
For club director José Pedro, working at Farense is more than a job; it’s a way of life. Born in Faro and a supporter from a young age, José played for the club’s youth team before turning his attention to marketing and advertising – he’s now the club’s Director of Marketing and Communications. It’s a role he’s held for three years and includes liaison with the local and national media, marketing, supporter engagement, and management of the club’s social media presence. José understands the club as well as anyone and worked for Farense when they were last in the Primeira Liga. I asked José what lessons had been learned from the last time the club were in the top tier. “Looking back, we can make even better decisions this year”, said José. “I think last time we were a little rushed in how we did things with certain aspects of the club. We have learnt from that and are in a good place for the new season.”
“My greatest wish is that Farenses in the future unite, motivate and fight, because only united and without self-interest can we achieve our great common interests: Success with honour and credibility.”João Rodrigues, Club President
As preparation for the new season, Farense played the Saudi Arabian team Al-Nassir, who have recently attracted worldwide attention due to their signing of Portuguese icon Cristiano Ronaldo. They also played Roma, who are managed by a certain José Mourinho, and they have made good progress in the Taça da Liga cup competition, albeit Farense’s opening day defeat at home to Casa Pia highlighted how tough the 2023/24 Primeira Liga season will be.
They’ve also been busy in the transfer market, bringing in players with proven experience. Just as importantly, they’ve been able to keep the services of the players who helped them secure promotion. Another key factor in the club’s success is their head coach, José Mota. This is the man who only joined the club in February and took them on a fantastic run, securing promotion. To have his services and experience onboard for the new season can only be a good thing and gives added confidence for the year ahead.
It promises to be an exciting season for The Lions of Faro. We wish them every success both on and off the football pitch.
September will see mouthwatering home games against Sporting Braga (19th) and Sporting Lisbon (30th). Ticketing information is available on the club’s website.