Rio Ave

Founded In
Vila do Conde, Portugal

Rio Ave

About Rio Ave

Rio Ave Futebol Clube was first established in 1939. Historically, the club has bounced up and down between the divisions of the Portuguese league system, suffering relegations and achieving promotions multiple times over the last few decades. The team is nicknamed Rio Grande, which translates to 'Big River'.

After three seasons in the top flight, the club was relegated at the end of the 2005–06 season. In 2007-08 they finished 2nd in the Liga de Honra and returned to the Primeira Liga. During their first season back, the team achieved notable draws against several of the league's powerhouses, including FC Porto and Benfica.

Major honours have been beyond the reach of the club so far, although their closest encounter with national silverware came in the 1983-84 season. Rio Ave made it all the way to the final of the Portuguese Cup. However, they lost the match to FC Porto. It remains the only major final the club has appeared in. Their best ever performance in the top flight of Portuguese football was a 5th place finish, achieved back in 1981-82. Lower down the league system, Rio Ave were crowned champions of the Segunda Liga in both 1995–96 and 2002–03. They also won the AF Porto Cup, a regional trophy, back in 1967.

Over the years, Rio Ave have developed a reputation for developing and nurturing talent. Several Portuguese international footballers have made promising starts to their professional careers at the club. Some of the more notable examples include Fábio Coentrão, Paulinho Santos, Rui Jorge and Quim.

The club has played its home matches at the Estadio do Rio Ave FC since the stadium's opening in 1985. The ground, which is also sometimes referred to as the Estadio dos Arcos, is able to hold a maximum of 12,815 supporters.