History of the roller hockey section
FC Barcelona’s roller hockey was officially founded on 1 June 1942, but a year later disappeared due to trouble getting their own rink.
It was not until 1948 when it reappeared, just when the Gran Via rink was being rented. Over the following years, and until the beginning of the 1960s, the Barça roller hockey team regularly fought for national supremacy. In 1963, however, the section fell into a crisis that would last for seven years because of Club budget cuts for the sections.
AN EXCEPTIONAL ERA
In 1970, José Lorente, a former Barça player, took charge of the team. With Lorente behind bench, he gave the team a total facelift, which soon resulted in a return to winning. From 1972 to 1987, the roller hockey section managed to win at least one title every season, except for 1975/76. This turned out to be just the beginning of an exceptional era whose heyday came in 1977/78, when Barça won virtually every competition it disputed both nationally and internationally. Proof of this success is in the 10 European Cups, eight of which were won between 1978 and 1985.
CHANGES AND A TITLE DROUGHT
This run of good results slowed down in 1987, due largely to the lack of star players in the pipeline, in addition to aggressive retooling on the part of Barça’s rivals. As a result, at the end of the 1987/88 season, Josep Lorente stepped aside having won 39 titles in 17 years. Several players left along with him. Jordi Vila-Puig retired, José E.b Torner and Joan Torner signed with Noia and Juan Carlos signed with Igualada. That was the year FC Barcelona’s title drought began, eventually lasting for 5 years until the 1993/94 season, when Barça won the Copa del Rey against Liceo of La Coruña
CARLOS FIGUEROA LEADS A REBIRTH
A year later, José Luis Páez and Roberto Roldán arrived and, at the end of the season, Carlos Figueroa came on to coach and players David Gabaldón and Carlos Folguera completed the squad, making Barça the favourites in every competition. They won the league in 1995/96 and. the following season, their success continued in the European League. In 1997/98 they won both the league and the European Super Cup, as well as the first edition of the Intercontinental Cup, played against the South American champions UVT.
The 1998/99 season, FC Barcelona’s 100th anniversary as a Club, every professional section team, including roller hockey, won their respective leagues. More good results followed, when they won the first Iberian Cup, the Copa del Rey, the league and the European League. In 2000/01, they won the league, the European League, the European Super Cup and the Iberian Cup.
QUIM PAÜLS TAKES OVER
At hockey’s peak, in the 2003/04 season, Gaby Cairo left the game. Following him was Carlos Figueroa, who in his last year as coach won every title that was at stake. His replacement behind the bench for the 2005/2006 season was Quim Paüls, a former player who was closely linked to the team. With Paüls, the team continued piling up victories. During the more than four seasons that led Barça, the team was exceptional, winning 4 OK Leagues; 2 European leagues; 2 Intercontinental Cups; 3 Spanish Super Cups; 4 Continental Cups; 1 Copa del Rey and 1 CERS Cup.
During the 2009/10 season, Paüls once again assumed the role of technical secretariat of the roller hockey section, a position he had already exercised before, and left his place to Ferran Pujalte, with whom the section would win its 19th European League in team history.
20 EUROPEAN LEAGUES
The former player Gaby Cairo took over the team in 2011. With him the team won 1 Spanish Super Cup, 1 Copa del Rey and 1 league before passing the reins in March 2013 his assistant, Ricard Muñoz. With Muñoz at the helm of Barça roller hockey, the team would surpass 20 European League titles. The 20th and the 21st would fall in 2014 and 2015, both times accompanied by league titles.