Early history

The football federation of Portugal was founded in 1914. The official name of the federation was União Portuguesa de Futebol, and their main goal was to promote national tournaments. Unfortunately, the WWI outbreak stopped those plans in their tracks for seven years. As a result, Portugal played its first official game in 1921, losing to Spain 3-1. The following year saw the founding of the Campeonato de Portugal, which set things off in the right direction.

Portugal first tournament were the 1928 Olympics, where they bowed out in the quarter-finals after a 2-1 loss to Egypt. Despite a solid showing, they didn’t manage to capitalize on it. After missing an invitation to the 1930 World Cup, they were humiliated in the 1934 qualifiers by losing 9-0 to Spain. The 1938 qualifiers saw the team face off against Switzerland, losing 2-1. Due to the WWII, they would have to wait 12 years for their next chance.

Fun Facts

-Portugal qualified for their first World Cup in 1966 ending a 52 year “curse”. The team was nicknamed “Os Magricos” . They placed 3rd place which is the best world cup finish for Portugal.

“Os Magricos” Qualifying team of 1966

-Portugal’s “golden generation” emerged in the 90’s led by players like Vitor Baía, Rui Costa, João Pinto, and Luis Figo

Luis Figo, One of Portugal’s greatest players

-Portugal’s first major international trophy was won at the Euro’s in 2016

Portugal celebrating the Euro 2016 victory

-Portugal has not won a World Cup

His name is Cristiano Ronaldo


You can not mention Portugal’s federation without mentioning Cristiano Ronaldo. Not only is he considered one of the best players to ever represent Portugal, he is considered one of the best players of all time!! He led Portugal to their first major international trophy while also being the most capped player for his country and scoring the most goals in his country’s history. He made his debut for Portugal at the age of 18 in 2003 and 12 years later was voted the best player in Portuguese history.