How many times have Portugal qualified for the quarter-finals of the World Cup? What is their record?
Fernando Santos’ swatted away Switzerland with an emphatic 6-1 Round of 16 win to set up a quarter-final clash against Morocco.
‘One of the best nights in our footballing history’ is how Portugal’s President Rebelo de Sousa described their emphatic 6-1 win over Switzerland in the Round of 16 clash at Lusail Stadium as Fernando Santos’ men sealed a quarter-final tie against Morocco.
Three goals from Benfica’s Gonçalo Ramos who took to the field instead of Cristiano Ronaldo helped the ‘Selecao’ on their way against a hapless Swiss side who had no answer against the rampant Portuguese.
Despite being recent winners of the UEFA European Championship (in 2016), Portugal have struggled on the big stage at World Cups over the years with many fans hoping that 2022 is the year they buck this trend.
1966 and 2006 glory
Portugal have only advanced as far as the semi-final stage at two World Cups ever. With the legendary Eusebio in the ranks in England ‘66, the side from Iberia comfortably topped a group which included Brazil, Hungary and Bulgaria. The ‘Black Panther’ bagged a hat-trick as Portugal powered past surprise package North Korea in the quarterfinals and despite Eusebio’s heroics, his side fell short in the semi-final against hosts and eventual winners England. A 2-1 win over the Soviet Union would come as a scant reward for Portugal in Eusebio’s first and only World Cup appearance.
Portugal had to wait 40 years to come close to repeating their achievements in England. With a young Cristiano Ronaldo in the squad, the Iberian men advanced to the semi-final stage of the 2006 Germany World Cup beating the likes of Netherlands, and England on their path to Berlin. A Zinedine Zidane penalty just after the half hour mark in the semi-final would end their tilt at the trophy and a defeat to hosts Germany say Portugal condemned to a fourth place finish.