2021 Team Preview: Movistar

PARIS FRANCE SEPTEMBER 20 Podium Dario Cataldo of Italy Imanol Erviti of Spain Enric Mas Nicolau of Spain Nelson Oliveira of Portugal Jose Joaquin Rojas Gil of Spain Marc Soler Gimenez of Spain Alejandro Valverde Belmonte of Spain Carlos Verona Quintanilla of Spain and Movistar Team Jose Luis Arrieta of Spain Sports director of Movistar Team Pablo Lastras of Spain Sports director of Movistar Team Best Team Celebration Trophy Flowers Mask Covid safety measures during the 107th Tour de France 2020 Stage 21 a 122km stage from MantesLaJolie to Paris Champslyses TDF2020 LeTour on September 20 2020 in Paris France Photo by Stephan Mantey PoolGetty Images
(Image credit: Getty Images Sport)

The longest-running team in the WorldTour peloton, Eusebio Unzué's Spanish squad dates back to 1980, racing as Reynolds, Banesto, ibanesto.com, Illes Balears, and Caisse d'Epargne, before telecoms giant Movistar took over title sponsorship in  2011. 

The team won five consecutive editions of the Tour de France through Miguel Indurain in the 1990s, while the likes of Nairo Quintana and Richard Carapaz have brought in three-week titles in more recent years. Alejandro Valverde has been the team's leading light for 15 years but age may just be catching up with the Spaniard, perhaps reflecting a transitional period for the team.

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Patrick Fletcher

Patrick is an NCTJ-trained journalist, and former deputy editor of Cyclingnews, who has seven years’ experience covering professional cycling. He has a modern languages degree from Durham University and has been able to put it to some use in what is a multi-lingual sport, with a particular focus on French and Spanish-speaking riders. Away from cycling, Patrick spends most of his time playing or watching other forms of sport - football, tennis, trail running, darts, to name a few, but he draws the line at rugby.