|Full name||Tours Football Club|
|Ground||Stade de la Vallée du Cher,
|Website||Club home page|
Tours Football Club (pronounced: [tuʁ]; commonly referred to as simply Tours) is a French association football club based in Tours, the capital city of the Indre-et-Loire department. The club was formed in 1919 and currently play in Ligue 2, the second level of French football. Tours plays its home matches at the Stade de la Vallée du Cher located within the city. The team is managed by Bernard Blaquart and captained by midfielder Thomas Gamiette.
Tours Football Club was founded in 1919 as under the name AS Docks-du-Centre. After two years of playing under the moniker, the club changed its name to AS du Centre. The club spent 30 years under the name as French football entered professionalism in the 1930s. In 1951, the club changed its name again to the current Tours FC. Under the Tours emblem, the club achieved success in its infancy reaching the Round of 64 in the Coupe de France thanks to player-coach Alfred Aston that same year.
Tours was promoted to the first division in 1980. Prior to the start of the season, the club signed prolific striker Delio Onnis from AS Monaco. Onnis improved the club's attack significantly over the next three years and departing the club in 1983 after Tours suffered relegation. During Onnis' stint between 1980–1983, Tours twice reached the semi-finals of the Coupe de France in 1982 and 1983. The club was eliminated on both occasions by Paris Saint-Germain. In 1984, Tours quickly returned to the first division after winning Division 2 title. However, after one season, the club returned to the lower league. Tours have yet to manage a return to Ligue 1.
During the club's current absence from Ligue 1, Tours fell to the Championnat National, the third division of French football, after finishing dead last in the 2006–07 season. During the season, Albert Falette, the club manager for eight years was removed from his position. At the end of the season, the club released or sold almost all its players, including captain David Fleurival. The club only kept long-time goalkeeper Armand Raimbault and young prospect Rudy Wendling. The long-term outlook strategy paid off with the club finishing second in the 2007–08 National season, thus returning to Ligue 2, where the club currently remain.
Colours and logos
Tours' crest is inspired by the city's coats of arms with three towers and a Fleur-de-lis. It bears the club's motto "Turonorum civitas libera", which means in Latin "Free city of Turones". Turones is the Celtic tribe, which gave its name to Tours. The motto was found engraved on a rock, which is now in the undergrounds of the Beaux Arts Museum located in the city. The salamander is a reference to King François I.
Tours has been playing at the Stade de la Vallée du Cher since 1978. In 1979, the stadium's capacity was 22,000, but now only incorporates on 13,500. The stadium was built thanks to former mayor Jean Royer, as he wanted a decent venue for the club. Before the construction of the Vallée du Cher, Tours played its home matches at the Stade de Grammont.
In France, Tours is not a town fond of football because of the lack of football tradition. Moreover, supporters were disappointed of the club's poor results in the past. However, the accession to Ligue 2 in 2006 has created some interest in the city and audiences in the stadium are gradually increasing. There are currently three groups of supporters:
- Amicale des supporters
- Turons 1951
As of 31 July, 2014. Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.
Players out on loan
Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.
Notable former players
Below are the notable former players who have represented Tours in league and international competition since the club's foundation in 1919. To appear in the section below, a player must have played in at least 80 official matches for the club.
For a complete list of Tours FC players, see Category:Tours FC players.
- Yvon Jublot (1969–76)
- Pierre Phelippon (1976–81)
- Hennie Hollink (1981–83)
- Guy Briet (1983 – March 85)
- Serge Besnard (March 1985–86)
- Yvon Jublot (1986–88)
- Jean Sérafin (1988–92)
- Raymond Kéruzoré (1992–93)
- Philippe Leroux (1993–95)
- Christian Letard (1995– March 99)
- Albert Falette (March 1999-07)
- Philippe Bizeul (2007)
- Daniel Sanchez (2007– 11 June)
- Peter Zeidler (June 2011 – August 2012)
- Bernard Blaquart (August 2012 – present)
- "Coupe de France demi-finales 1982". French Football Federation. Retrieved 12 April 2008.
- "Coupe de France demi-finales 1983". French Football Federation. Retrieved 12 April 2008.
- "De l'AS du Centre au Tours FC". Tours FC. Retrieved 12 April 2008.
- "Tours antique – une ville derrière son rempart". Collège Montaigne de Tours. Retrieved 12 April 2008.
- "France – Trainers of First and Second Division Clubs". RSSSF. Retrieved 12 April 2008.
- (French) Official website