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Portugal National football team profile

Too much quality inn the team but perenial under acheivers at the FIFA World world cup is a fitting description for Portugal. Finalists at UEFA EURO 2004 and semi-finalists at Germany 2006, Portugal have displayed some dazzling football in recent years, but without ever landing a major prize. Having never progressed beyond the semi-finals of a FIFA World Cup™, A Selecção das Quinas will be aiming to go all the way this time around.

Portugal national football team

Mozambican-born coach Carlos Queiroz is no stranger to South Africa, and his previous experience as the host nation’s coach could prove invaluable. With talents of players such as Cristiano Ronaldo, Pepe and Deco to call upon, Queiroz will know that expectations are sure to be high.

The road to South Africa
Recording only one win from their first five group matches, Portugal quickly went from being group favourites to standing on the cusp of elimination. The second half of qualification brought a spectacular transformation, however, and they scored eight goals without reply in their last four group qualifiers to earn a play-off spot. Despite the absence of Ronaldo, their captain and talisman, for the two-legged tie against Bosnia-Herzegovina, they won home and away to clinch a comfortable 2-0 aggregate victory.

The star players of Portugal
While fans are rightly excited about the prospect of Cristiano Ronaldo’s involvement on football’s biggest stage, the 2008 FIFA World Player played a subdued role in qualification, failing score in any of his seven appearances. Nevertheless, the Real Madrid star is known for his ability to rise to the big occasion and will undoubtedly be one of the men to watch at South Africa 2010.

Yet Portugal are no pushovers at the back. Bruno should bring aggression and aerial ability at both ends of the pitch, while Ricardo Carvalho has plenty of sure-footed experience. Pepe is questionable following a knee injury, and the loss of Jose Bosingwa is also notable. Veteran midfield pair Simao and Deco are also expected to shine.

The coach of Portugal
Having guided the likes of Luis Figo, Rui Costa and Fernando Couto to consecutive FIFA World Youth Championship titles in 1989 and 1991, Carlos Queiroz is credited as the mastermind behind Portugal’s ‘Golden Generation’.

At senior level, Queiroz enjoyed great success as assistant to Sir Alex Ferguson, with a 10-month stint in charge of Real Madrid sandwiched in-between his two spells as No2 at Manchester United. Having succeeded Luiz Felipe Scolari after EURO 2008, this is in fact Queiroz’s second term as the senior national team coach. He last coached the senior side from 1991 to 1993, a disappointing period during which he failed to lead them to either EURO 1992 or the 1994 FIFA World Cup.

Previous FIFA World Cups of Portugal
Portugal set the bar incredibly high on their first FIFA World Cup appearance in 1966, walking away with a third-place finish along with a golden boot award for Eusebio. That maiden voyage remains their best performance to date on football’s biggest stage.

After failing to progress past the first stage in 1986 and 2002, Germany 2006 marked a return to FIFA World Cup form for the Portuguese. Undefeated during the group phase, they went on to overcome Netherlands and England en route to the semi-finals, only to lose 1-0 to France and then go down to the hosts in the play-off for third place. South Africa 2010 will be Portugal’s fifth FIFA World Cup appearance.

Portugal national football team Squad

Nr. Name Date of Birth Position Clubs Height
1 EDUARDO 19/09/1982 GK Braga (POR) 187
2 BRUNO ALVES 27/11/1981 DF Porto (POR) 187
3 PAULO FERREIRA 18/01/1979 DF Chelsea (ENG) 181
4 ROLANDO 31/08/1985 DF Porto (POR) 189
5 DUDA 27/06/1980 DF Malaga (ESP) 175
6 RICARDO CARVALHO 18/05/1978 DF Chelsea (ENG) 183
7 CRISTIANO RONALDO 05/02/1985 FW Real Madrid (ESP) 185
8 PEDRO MENDES 26/02/1979 MF Sporting Lisbon (POR) 177
9 LIEDSON 17/12/1977 FW Sporting Lisbon (POR) 173
10 DANNY 07/08/1983 FW Zenit St Petersburg (RUS) 179
11 SIMAO 31/10/1979 FW Atletico Madrid (ESP) 170
12 BETO 01/05/1982 GK Porto (POR) 183
13 MIGUEL 04/01/1980 DF Valencia (ESP) 175
14 MIGUEL VELOSO 11/05/1986 MF Sporting Lisbon (POR) 181
15 PEPE 26/02/1983 MF Real Madrid (ESP) 186
16 RAUL MEIRELES 17/03/1983 MF Porto (POR) 179
17 NANI 17/11/1986 FW Manchester Utd. (ENG) 175
18 HUGO ALMEIDA 23/05/1984 FW Werder Bremen (GER) 193
19 TIAGO 02/05/1981 MF Atletico Madrid (ESP) 183
20 DECO 27/08/1977 MF Chelsea (ENG) 175
21 RICARDO COSTA 16/05/1981 DF Lille (FRA) 183
22 DANIEL FERNANDES 25/09/1983 GK Iraklis (GRE) 194
23 FABIO COENTRAO 11/03/1988 DF Benfica (POR) 181

Coach: Carlos QUEIROZ (POR)

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