Portugal national football team players, coach, FIFA world rankings, World Cup

Portugal national football team players, coach, FIFA world rankings, World Cup

Ciku Njuguna
updated at April 12, 2023 at 8:01 PM

Portugal’s national football team is a globally renowned outfit that has maintained a top 20 rank in major soccer leagues, and world football. In addition, the team has produced prominent football stars such as Ronaldo, Pepe, Eusébio, Luís Figo, and Rui Costa, among others. So, is Portugal one of the best football teams in the world? Dig in and find out.

Portugal's national football team's trophies
The Navigators of Portugal celebrate following the UEFA EURO 2016 victory against France at the Stade de France, in Paris, France. Photo by VI Images.
Source: Getty Images

Why is Portugal so good at football? The team is home to global football stars such as Ronaldo and Luis Figo, and superstar coaches such as José Mourinho. This article will look at the Portugal national football team, its players, coaches, World Cup titles, FIFA and UEFA rankings.

Profile Summary

  • Full name: Portugal national football team
  • Portugal national football team's nickname: The Selection of the shield, The Navigators, Os Magriços
  • Managed by: Portuguese Football Federation
  • Founded: 1914
  • Colours: Green and red
  • Federation: UEFA
  • Coach: Fernando Santos
  • Captain: Cristiano Ronaldo
  • Most caps: Cristiano Ronaldo (186)
  • Top scorer: Cristiano Ronaldo (115)
  • FIFA ranking: 8 (as of December 2021)
  • Highest FIFA ranking: 3 (2018)
  • Lowest FIFA ranking: 43 (1998)
  • FIFA code: POR
  • Total market value: $786.6 million
  • Stadium: Estadio da Luz, Estádio do Dragão, Estadio Jose Alvalade


Portugal's national football team's trophies
Portuguese supporters and players celebrate the Euro 2016 Victory Parade in Lisbon. Photo by Bruno Barros/DPI/NurPhoto.
Source: Getty Images

When did football start in Portugal? According to FootballHistory, the governing body for football in Portugal was founded in 1914 to promote national football. But unfortunately, the beginning of World War I delayed the federation's goals by 7 years.

The Navigators then played their first official match against Spain in 1921. They played in several matches in the following years, including the 1928 Olympics and FIFA World Cup qualifiers. Unfortunately, the young dream of the Navigators was again cut short for 12 years by the second World War.

Will Portugal be in the 2022 World Cup?

How many times has Portugal qualified for the World Cup? 45 years after their first international match against Spain, the Os Magriços qualified for the 1966 FIFA World Cup. Since then, the club has qualified for more World Cup tournaments in 1986, 2002, 2006, 2010, 2014, 2018 and 2022.

Portugal's national football team fans
Portugal's supporters react while watching their national soccer team's victory against Poland in the Euro 2016, in Praca do Comercio, in Lisbon, Portugal. Photo by Horacio Villalobos - Corbis/Corbis.
Source: Getty Images

After dealing North Macedonia a 2-0 defeat, Portugal’s national football team players, led by their team captain Cristiano Ronaldo, publicly celebrated, saying,

“Goal accomplished. We made it to the World Cup in Qatar. We are where we deserve to be.”

One of Portugal's finest midfielders, Bruno Fernandes, scored the match's only goals, leading his team to victory. Acknowledging their sixth consecutive ticket to the World Cup, he said,

“This is a special victory. We reached our goal, which was what mattered. Portugal has played better matches, but this one will stay in our memories because it gave us a place in the World Cup.”

Has Portugal ever won the FIFA World Cup?

The club suffered one of its biggest World Cup defeats in 2014 in a match against Germany. In 1966, it made its best performance ever after finishing in the third place after England and West Germany. However, the club has never won the World Cup since its inception.

Portugal’s national football team roster

Portugal national football team players
The Navigators pose for a team photo prior to the UEFA Nations League football match against Sweden in 2020, in Solna, Sweden. Photo by Diogo Pinto/ POOL/AFP.
Source: Getty Images

Here is the club's 2022 roster, according to Transfermarkt.


  • Diogo Costa
  • José Sá
  • Rui Patrício


  • Pepe
  • José Fonte
  • Nuno Mendes
  • Raphaël Guerreiro
  • João Cancelo
  • Cédric Soares


  • Danilo Pereira
  • William Carvalho
  • Matheus Nunes
  • Vitinha
  • João Moutinho
  • Otávio
  • Bruno Fernandes
  • Bernardo Silva


  • Rafael Leão
  • Gonçalo Guedes


  • Cristiano Ronaldo
  • André Silva
  • Diogo Jota
Portugal's national football team's captain
Cristiano Ronaldo warms up during a training session at Fisht Stadium in Sochi, Russia. Photo by TF-Images.
Source: Getty Images

Who is Portugal’s national football team captain?

In 2008, top international goal scorer Cristiano Ronaldo received the captain's armband. Following a historic Euro 2016 win, right backer Cédric Soares's revelation about the team captain confirmed Ronaldo's influence on the team, saying,

“Always, he helped our team-mates, he always had a lot of motivational words. He had great words for each player in each moment of the game.”

Below is Cristiano Ronaldo's profile summary.

Profile summary

  • Full name: Cristiano Ronaldo
  • Date of birth: 5 February 1985
  • Age: 37 years old (as of May 2022)
  • Place of birth: Funchal, Portugal
  • Zodiac sign: Aquarius
  • Position: Centre forward
  • Number: 7
  • Current team: Manchester United
  • Caps: 186
  • International goals: 115

Portugal’s national football team coach

Who is the head coach of Portugal? The Navigators' current tactician is former Porto coach Fernando Santos. Santos was appointed in 2014, replacing Paulo Bento, who was dismissed over the team's poor performance.

Portugal's national football team's coach
Santos defended Christiano's actions during the EURO 2016 match against France, remarking that 'joining with your heart to the fate of the team is always a strength, never a fault.' Photo: VI images.
Source: Getty Images

Profile summary

  • Full name: Fernando Manuel Costa Santos
  • Date of birth: 10 October 1954
  • Age: 67 years old (as of May 2022)
  • Place of birth: Lissabon, Portugal
  • Zodiac sign: Libra
  • Preferred formation: 4-1-4-1
  • Win rate: 62.88

Portugal’s national football team legends

While Cristiano remains the most famous Portuguese player, the country is renowned for producing world-class soccer stars. Let us look at the profiles of some of the team's greatest football players of all time.

Eusébio's profile summary

  • Full name: Eusébio da Silva Ferreira
  • Date of birth: 25 Jan 1942
  • Citizenship: Mozambique, Portugal
  • Position: Centre forward, striker
  • Caps: 64
  • Goals: 41
  • Titles and trophies: Ballon d'Or (1), Footballer of the year (2), Top Scorer (12), Portuguese Champion (11), Portuguese Cup (5)

Luís Figo profile summary

  • Full name: Luís Filipe Madeira Caeiro Figo
  • Date of birth: 4 November 1972
  • Citizenship: Portugal
  • Position: Right winger, right midfield, attacking midfield
  • Caps: 127
  • Goals: 32
  • Titles and trophies: Ballon d'Or (1), Best FIFA Men's player (1), Footballer of the year (6), Portuguese Cup winner (1)
Portugal national football team
The winners of the Euro 2016 final football match celebrate at the Stade de France in Saint-Denis, north of Paris. Photo by Franck Fife/AFP.
Source: Getty Images

Portugal’s national football team ranking

Where is Portugal ranked in the world? According to the latest FIFA rankings, the squad is ranked eighth with 167.78 points.

Portugal’s national football team trophies

So, how many trophies has the Portugal national football team won? Here is a list of the team's titles and awards according to Transfermarkt.

  • European Champion 2015/16
  • UEFA Nations League Winner 2018/19
  • Euro participant 2020/21, 2015/16, 2011/12, 2007/08, 2003/04, 1999/00
  • World Cup Participant 2013/14, 2009/10, 2005/06, 2001/02,
  • World Cup Third Place 1965/66

In addition, the club has won the following awards,

  • Skydome Cup 1994/95
  • FIFA Confederation Cup 2016/17
  • Summer Olympics 1995/96
  • FIFA World Cup Most Entertaining Team 2005/06
  • Laureus World Sports Award -Team of the Year 2017

The Portugal national football team stands out from the crowd as one of the best performing clubs in the world. The 2022 Qatar FIFA World Cup tournaments are another chance for the club to make history finally.

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Ciku Njuguna photo
Ciku Njuguna
Ciku Njuguna is a journalist with 3 year’s experience in content creation based in Kenya. She currently covers sports personnel as well as team biographies.