Peru national football team

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Nickname(s) La Blanquirroja
La Rojiblanca
Association Federación Peruana
de Fútbol
Confederation CONMEBOL (South America)
Head coach José del Solar
Captain Nolberto Solano
Most caps Roberto Palacios (122)
Top scorer Teófilo Cubillas (26)[1]
Home stadium Estadio Nacional
FIFA ranking 88
Highest FIFA ranking 10 (September 1997)
Lowest FIFA ranking 88 (April 2009)
Elo ranking 54
Highest Elo ranking 12 (June 1978)
Lowest Elo ranking 75 (May 1994)
First international
Peru Peru 0 – 4 Uruguay 22x20px
(Lima, Peru; November 1, 1927)
Biggest win

Peru Peru 9 – 1

(Bogotá, Colombia; 11 August 1938)
Biggest defeat
 Brazil 7 – 0 Peru Peru
(Santa Cruz, Bolivia; 26 June, 1997)
World Cup
Appearances 4 (First in 1930)
Best result Quarterfinals, 1970
Copa América
Appearances 34 (First in 1927)
Best result Winners, 1939 and 1975

The Peru national football team represents Peru in international football competitions, and is controlled by the Peruvian Football Federation. Created in 1927, the team competes with nine others in the South American CONMEBOL conference within FIFA. The majority of Peru's home matches are held at the national multi-use stadium, the Estadio Nacional, with friendly matches sometimes hosted at club stadiums.

Peru has qualified for four FIFA World Cups and two Olympic tournaments, reaching the quarterfinals of both tournaments, and has won the Copa América on two occasions. Peru's traditional rival is the football team of Chile,[2] but the national squad has other prominent football rivalries such as the one with Ecuador.[3] The traditional colors of the national team are red and white, and the nickname la Blanquirroja (Spanish for "the white-and-red") is generally used to refer to the team.[4]

During the 1930s, featuring players such as Teodoro Fernández and Alejandro Villanueva, Peru participated in the first FIFA World Cup and the controversial 1936 Summer Olympics. Moreover, during this time the team won at the inaugural Bolivarian Games in 1938 and their first Copa América in 1939. In the 1950s, despite Peru lacking victory in any major international tournament, the team of Alberto Terry and Valeriano López was considered to be among the top 20 of the decade.[5] Later, between 1970 and 1982 and with players such as Héctor Chumpitaz, Hugo Sotil, and Teófilo Cubillas, a golden generation of Peruvian footballers once more brought Peru into the view of the world, with many considering that a new football power had emerged.[6][7] With this team, Peru qualified for three FIFA World Cups and won the Copa América in 1975. As of 2009, Peru is going through one of its darkest hours in its history due to a series of poor results in the current World Cup Qualifiers.



Introduction of football

Association Football was introduced in Peru by English sailors in the late 19th century during their frequent stops at the port of Callao, which at that point was considered one of the most important ports of the Pacific Ocean.[8] During their free time, the English sailors played football and invited the local Chalacos (people from Callao) to participate. Allegedly, it was during these early games that the creation of the popular move known as the chalaca (short for "Chalacan Strike"), or bicycle kick, took place.[9] Further promoting the growth of the sport, British residents of Peru and Peruvians returning from England began to increment the practice of football.[10]

Soon, the sports rivalry that evolved between the foreigners and the Chalacos began to gain much attention from people elsewhere.[10] Even though at first the sport was played without the formality of sports clubs, a few clubs were eventually created in order to continue its practice in the early 20th century.[11][12] In the 1900s, due to the construction of the Panama Canal, the port of Callao was no longer flooded with the quantity of foreign sailors and travelers that had at one point made the port a point of much cultural diffusion.[13] By this time more Peruvian cities had developed their own football clubs and leagues, the most important being those of Lima, Cusco, and Arequipa.[14] However, the most important amateur league (the Peruvian Football League) stayed in the capital province, where a new football rivalry arose between the participating clubs of Lima and the clubs of Callao.[15] The lack of a centralized organization often brought much conflict between the teams, and such a situation eventually escalated into a conflict that led to the creation of the Peruvian Football Federation in 1922 and a new Peruvian Football League tournament under the regulation of said organization in 1926.[16]

Creation of national team

Even though the Peruvian Football Federation had joined CONMEBOL in 1925, internal and economic problems prevented the creation of a national team that would officially participate in their tournaments.[17] An unofficial national team was created in 1922, and it played against a Uruguayan team sponsored by the Asociación Uruguaya de Fútbol.[17] The time that followed saw the appearance of a group of talented Peruvian football players, and Peruvian clubs made a series of successful international tours due to the high demand of the skill of their players across South America in places such as Colombia, Venezuela, and Chile.[18]

In 1927 a national football team was officially created for Peru.[17] This team played in the South American Championship of 1927 that was held in Lima, and Peru would go on to reach third place after losing in their official debut to Uruguay (4–0), achieving their first victory against Bolivia (3–2), and losing to Argentina (1–5).[19] Nevertheless, internal corruption and the commotion caused by the international crisis of the time caused the national team that played in Argentina in 1929 to be formed by favoritism rather than by actual skill.[20] A year later, la Blanquirroja was invited by FIFA to participate in a new intercontinental competition to be held in Uruguay, the first World Cup.[21]

1930s Golden generation

In the 1930 FIFA World Cup, although the Peruvian team was not able to get past the group stages, the general populace of Uruguay was surprised by the good performance of the Peruvians.[22] By 1934, the skill of the Peruvian players attained popularity beyond South America's borders, and in March of that year the national squad (composed mainly of players from Universitario de Deportes, Alianza Lima, and Atletico Chalaco) united with the Chilean squad (formed mainly by players from Colo Colo) to form the Combinado del Pacifico. The Combinado would make a tour in the European countries of England, Germany, France, and Spain until August 1935, and Teodoro Fernandez became the team's top goal scorer with 48 goals in 39 games.[23]

During the 1936 Berlin Olympics, Peru made a great start by defeating Finland with a margin of 7–3. Among the line of players featured in this parcipation of Peru were Alejandro Villanueva, Teodoro Fernández, Juan Valdivieso, and Adelfo Magallanes.[24] Next, the Peruvians upset the pre-tournament favorites Austria, 4–2 after extra time. However, the International Olympic Committee controversially nullified the result and ordered a re-match, and the complete delegations of Peru and Colombia left Germany in protest.[25][26] To this day it is not known with certainty what exactly happened at Germany, but it is popularly believed that Adolf Hitler and the Nazi authorities were involved.[25]

In 1938, Peru's first international title would finally come during the first Bolivarian Games, which Peru won after winning all of their games against the football teams of Bolivia, Ecuador, Colombia, and Venezuela.[27] Afterwards, la Blanquirroja won Peru's first South American Championship (later known as Copa America) in 1939. Once again, the national squad lost none of its matches in their path to the final by defeating Ecuador, Chile, and Paraguay. The last game was played against Uruguay, and the Peruvians managed to beat the Uruguayans by a close score of 2–1.[28] With this result, Peru became the fourth nation after Uruguay, Argentina, and Brazil to win the famed South American tournament.

Good football, few titles

Peru's early football years after the 1930s did not involve any other major accomplishments. In 1941, Peru and Argentina played a series of three games for the Copa Roque Saenz Peña in Lima, and a struggling Peru managed to draw twice before finally losing the third match 3–0.[29] The national squad's slow change and bad situation was most obvious during the early South American Championships of the 1940s. By 1941, la Blanquirroja still had effective but old players like Teodoro Fernández in their lines.[30] In 1947, the squad regained their title of champions at the Bolivarian Games.[27] Nevertheless, Peru would not get close to achieving another international title until 1949, when Peru gained third after defeating Colombia, Ecuador, Bolivia, Chile, and Uruguay in the South American Championship held in Brazil.[31]

By the 1950s, Peru once again found itself a major protagonist in South American football, considered to be among the top 20 of the decade.[5] In the Pan-American Championship of 1952 the Peruvians defeated Panama and Mexico, tied Brazil, and lost to Chile and Uruguay by minimal differences.[32] Players such as Alberto Terry, Guillermo Barbadillo, Valeriano López, Félix Castillo, and Óscar Gómez Sánchez brought in a competitive game to the Peruvian team of the 1950s. During 1953 and 1954, Peru achieved its only two titles of the 1950s thanks to the Copa del Pacifico after losing and winning two times against Chile.[32] In the South American Championship of 1955, this national squad led a campaign that made them reach third place in Chile.[33] Nonetheless, 1956 turned out as more of a slip for the team as they failed to win games in the Pan-American Championship held in Mexico and the South American Championship of Montevideo.[32] The last years of the 1950s continued the good football of la Blanquirroja as they reached fourth place in the South American Championships of 1957 and 1959, and defeated England by a score of 4–1.[32][34][35]

During the 1960s Peru began to slowly show signs of further improvement as the team won the Bolivarian Games of Barranquilla and qualified for the 1960 Summer Olympics held in Rome.[27] Yet, these were the only achievements of this decade as Peru failed to place in the top four spots of the 1963 South American Championship, failed to qualify for the FIFA World Cups of Chile and England, and failed to regain the title of the Copa del Pacifico.

1970s Golden generation

The story of this generation started in late 1969, when la Blanquirroja managed to qualify for the Mexico 1970 World Cup. Thanks to the goals of "Cachito" Ramírez, the squad managed what seemed impossible by tying Argentina at a game popularly known as "La Bombonera" (in reference to the Estadio Alberto J. Armando where the game was played).[36] The squad managed by "Didi" Pereira followed a 4-2-4 formation and was generally composed of José Fernández, Orlando de la Torre, Héctor Chumpitaz, and Nicolás Fuentes as the defenders; Ramón Mifflin and Roberto Challe as the midfielders; Julio Baylón, Pedro Pablo León, Teófilo Cubillas, and Alberto Gallardo as the forwards; and Luis Rubiños as the goalkeeper.[37]

The participation of Peru in the 1970 FIFA World Cup remains as one of the most memorable as the squad caused surprise as they advanced into the quarterfinals after defeating Bulgaria 3–2 and Morocco 3–0, and losing 3–1 to Germany.[32] Although Peru lost the quarterfinal game to Brazil by 4–2, la Blanquirroja would go on to win the Copa del Pacifico, were invited to participate in the Brazil Independence Cup, and won the Copa Mariscal Sucre.[32] Additionally, the squad would achieve South American glory as they achieved their second Copa America in 1975.[38]

In 1978, la Blanquirroja once again qualified for a World Cup. The squad led by Marcos Calderón was somewhat different in structure from the early 70s with a 4-4-2 formation. Jaime Duarte, Héctor Chumpitaz, Rubén Díaz, and Germán Leguía were on the defense; César Cueto, Percy Rojas, Teófilo Cubillas, and José Velásquez on the midfield; Juan José Muñante, Juan Carlos Oblitas, Guillermo La Rosa, and Hugo Sotil on the attack; and Ramón Quiroga as the goalkeeper.[39]

Prior to the World Cup, the national squad defeated varied opponents such as China and Hungary.[32] Once into the World Cup finals, Peru reached the top of their group after defeating Scotland (3–1), tying with the Netherlands (0–0), and defeating Iran (4–1).[39] However, once into the second round, Peru lost its earlier energy and ended last in the group after losing to Brazil (0–3), Poland (0–1), and to Argentina (0–6) in a controversial match that some claim was bought by Argentina's military junta.[39][40] Afterwards, the squad would go on to play some international friendlies to prepare for the Copa America of 1979; they would tie Scotland at Glasgow (1–1) and defeat Uruguay in Lima (2–0). Nonetheless, by the time this new tournament started, Peru was eliminated by Chile. This great era in Peruvian football would end with a 1–0 loss against Mexico at Monterrey.[32]

From glory to decline

The national team continued to occasionally shine in the 1980s. La Blanquirroja managed to successfully qualify for the 1982 FIFA World Cup at the expense of Colombia and Uruguay, the recent Mundialito winners.[41] Under the direction of Elba de Padua Lima, the Peruvians won the Copa del Pacifico and led a European and African tour in which la Blanquirroja defeated Hungary (2–1), France (1–0), tied Algeria (1–1), and upon their return defeated Romania (2–0).[32] Tim's squad was composed of a 4-4-2 formation with Jaime Duarte, Ruben Díaz, Salvador Salguero, and Jorge Olaechea in the defense; César Cueto, José Velásquez, Julio César Uribe, and Teófilo Cubillas on the midfield; Gerónimo Barbadillo and Juan Carlos Oblitas as the forwards; and Ramón Quiroga as the goalkeeper.[42]

Once in the World Cup of Spain, the team did not perform well as they tied with Cameroon and Italy, and lost 5–1 against Poland.[42] Afterwards, Peru would face a string of bad results, but nearly qualified to the 1986 FIFA World Cup.[32] The Peruvians needed a victory against Argentina in order to directly qualify to the World Cup, but Diego Maradona pulled off a tie that led Peru to seek qualification through a play-off game against Chile. La Blanquirroja were defeated both at Chile and Peru, and that put an end to Peruvian aspirations for this tournament. From that point on until the 1990s, Peru's only major victory was that against India in the Nehru Cup.[32]

The 1987 Alianza Lima air disaster further crushed the hopes for the team as a series of good players ready to play for Peru and the national team's coach Marcos Calderón (among others) died.[43] The situation of Peru would not improve from that point as a series of ties and defeats came one after the other.[32] Nevertheless, a change took sudden place in the late 1990s as Peru reached fourth place at the 1997 Copa America and nearly qualified to the 1998 World Cup, as they simply lost a chance to appear in the tournament due to a goal difference with Chile.[44] Later, the team would win the Kirin Cup in 1999 and reached the quarterfinals of the Copa America of that same year.[45] Players like Nolberto Solano, Andrés Mendoza, Flavio Maestri, Roberto Palacios, Claudio Pizarro, and José del Solar made somewhat of a positive difference during these years.[45]


If these guys, when they put on La Blanquirroja, played like in their teams, Peru would have already been present in a World Cup [during these times]. I hope, wish, and want that in the upcoming qualifiers Peru achieves the World Cup qualification everyone of us desires.

Teófilo Cubillas[46]

The early 21st century brought with it the same Peruvian team of the late 90s. Peru was invited to compete in the CONCACAF Gold Cup in the year 2000, and the team did surprisingly well to the point of reaching the semifinals of the North American competition.[47] As the years passed, Peruvian football once more started to give signs of vitality. Local teams from the league began doing rather well in international competitions, including Cienciano's 2003-04 conquest of the Copa Sudamericana and the Recopa Sudamericana.[48] Even though Peru won another Kirin Cup in 2005, they were not able to get past the quarterfinals in three consecutive Copa Americas (2001, 2004, and 2007).[32] Furthermore, the team was not able to qualify for the 2002 or the 2006 FIFA World Cup.

The national team in a game versus Brazil for the CONMEBOL 2010 World Cup Qualifiers.

Nonetheless, in 2007, the football fans of Peru received a great surprise as the national U-17 squad qualified and reached the quarterfinals (for the first time) of a FIFA World Cup. However, the regular Peruvian squad had a horrible season that left them at the bottom of the South American qualifiers by the end of the year 2008. To make matters worse, a corruption and indisciplinary scandal shook the national football team as Peruvian journalists Jaime Bayly and Magaly Medina uncovered that a series of players, including Claudio Pizarro, Andrés Mendoza, Santiago Acasiete, Paolo Guerrero and Jefferson Farfan, had been in a series of parties and other similar events during the time when they should have been preparing for the games of the CONMEBOL World Cup qualifiers; several of them are currently banned from playing in the national team while others are under investigation.[49][50]

If that were not enough, in November 2008 Peru's Federation, League, referees and officials, and national team were all suspended by FIFA due to the problems between the Peruvian Football Federation (FPF), the Peruvian Institute of Sport (IPD) and the government.[51] Arturo Woodman, president of the IPD, and the Peruvian government had made the re-election of Manuel Burga (who was under investigation for charges of corruption) illegal, but the nation's football federation, with the backing of FIFA, re-appointed Burga as president of the federation.[52] A month later, the battle between the IPD and the FPF was eventually solved when both sides agreed to discuss and solve the problem, and FIFA's suspension was lifted by its president Sepp Blatter.[53] Unfortunately, Peru lost the chance to host the 2009 South American Youth Championship because of this dispute. Peru's possibilities for qualification to the 2010 FIFA World Cup look dim as the national football team, approaching the last rounds of the competition, lies last in the South American qualifiers.[54]


View of the Estadio Nacional's northern stand and tower.

The Estadio Nacional, also known as the Coloso de José Díaz, is a 45,574-spectator stadium located in Lima that acts as the traditional home of the Peruvian team and the National Stadium of Peru.[55] On July 18, 1897, the field was inaugurated and named Estadio Guadalupe. The Liga Peruana de Futbol (known as the FPF today) used it for the first football tournaments held in Lima. In 1921, under the embellecimiento (beautifying) process for Lima under the presidency of Augusto B. Leguía, the stadium was renovated and renamed the Estadio Nacional de Peru.[56] Later, under the government of Manuel Odría, the stadium was reconstructed and officially re-inaugurated on October 27, 1952.[57]

During the preparations for the U-17 championship, artificial turf was installed as a means of making the stadium look in better shape. Nonetheless, the artificial turf remained in the Estadio Nacional. In the year of 2005, Peru held the privilege of holding four of the eight "Star II" (the highest certification granted to artificial pitches in the world) artificial turf stadiums in the world.[58] Even though the national stadium was one of the four Peruvian stadiums that received the "Star II" certification,[59] it has received heavy criticism from clubs of the Primera División Peruana because of the alleged injuries it causes to players.[60]

Alternate stadia

File:Monumental U Occidente.JPG
Inside the Estadio Monumental.

The national team, for a series of different reasons, has tended to use a variety of venues to play against its rivals. At times, using the high altitude of the Estadio Garcilaso de la Vega in Cusco or the Amazonic climate Estadio Max Augustín of Iquitos can prove to be a good strategy for the team.[61] Also, using popular stadiums in Lima, like the Estadio Alejandro Villanueva, can sometimes be an option for the team due to the supportive crowd.[62] Recently, though, the more modern Estadio Monumental "U" has been selected to momentarily house the Peruvian football team due to the National Stadium's artificial turf.[60]

The Estadio Monumental is a football stadium in Lima, Peru, which serves as home ground for the football club Universitario de Deportes. It was built throughout the 1990s, and officially opened in they year 2000. Currently, it is Peru's largest stadium, and the third largest stadium in South America behind the Maracanã in Brazil and the Monumental Isidro Romero Carbo in Ecuador.[63] The stadium was built in accordance with FIFA’s manual of technical specifications for stadiums, and has a spectator-capacity of 80,093.[63][64]

World Cup record

File:Monumental Sur Camiseta.JPG
The southern stand of the Estadio Monumental raise a jersey-shaped banner before Peru plays Brazil in a 2010 FIFA World Cup Qualifier.

Peru has played at four FIFA World Cup finals, the first in 1930 and the last in 1982.[65]

In the 1930 la Blanquirroja lost both of its matches, although they allegedly played a dignifying match against Uruguay in the inauguration of the Estadio Centenario.[66] During the match against Romania, Peru's Placido Galindo became the first player to be sent off during a World Cup.[67]

In 1970, the team led by "Didi" Pereira beat Bulgaria 3–2 after trailing 0–2 by half-time,[68] defeated over Morocco 3–0, lost to Germany 1–3, and were eliminated by Brazil 4–2 in the quarterfinal match.[69][70] Later, the squad would go on to qualify for the 1978 cup held in Argentina, where they famously beat Scotland 3–1[71][72] and infamously lost to Argentina in a game that is considered to have been set-up by the military junta that governed Argentina during those times.[73] Peru qualified first in its group for its first time after drawing with the Netherlands at 0–0 and beating Iran 4–1.[74][75] By the time the Spain 1982 World Cup came, the Peruvian squad was seen as a favorite, but Peru tied with Cameroon and Italy and were beaten by Poland with a score of 5–1.[76]

Peru almost once again qualified to the World Cup in two occasions, in the 1986 qualifier and the 1998 qualifier. In 1986, the Argentina of Diego Maradona and Chile put a halt to Peruvian aspirations. In 1998, Peru lost a spot in the qualifiers by a goal difference with Chile. Currently, 27 years have passed since Peru entered a World Cup, and the squad is attempting to reach the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

Year Result Matches Wins Draws Losses GF[32] GA[32]
1930 Round 1 2 0 0 2 1 4
1934 Withdrew
19381950 Did not qualify
1954 Withdrew
19581966 Did not qualify
1970 Quarterfinals 4 2 0 2 9 9
1974 Did not qualify
1978 Round 2 6 2 1 3 7 12
1982 Round 1 3 0 2 1 2 6
19862006 Did not qualify
Totals 15 4 3 8 19 31

Copa América record

After joining CONMEBOL in 1925, Peru has hosted the Copa América six times and won it twice. Peru has had two top goalscorers for the tournament, Teodoro Fernández (7 goals, 1939) and Eduardo Malasquez (3 goals, 1983).[77] The 1927 tournament was the first hosted by Peru, followed by the 1935, 1939, 1957 and the 2004 tournaments.

In 1939 Peru achieved its first Copa América title by defeating Ecuador 5–2, Chile 3–1, and Paraguay 3–0 in order to reach the final. With skilled players like Teodoro Fernández and Jorge Alcalde, Peru defeated Uruguay in the final by the close score of 2–1.[78] With this result, Peru became the fourth nation, after Uruguay, Brazil, and Argentina, to win the Copa América. In 1975, the Peruvians won the first Copa América held without a fixed venue. The team first had to make it out of the group stages by defeating Chile and Bolivia, and in the semi-finals defeated Brazil at the Mineirão by a score of 3–1 with the goals of Enrique Casaretto and Teófilo Cubillas. Next, a sorting had to be made in order to randomly choose Brazil or Peru to advance into the finals, and Peru won the spot.[79] Once in the final, Peru faced Colombia. The squad lost its first game, but the two following games (the first played at Lima and the last match played at Caracas) were won by la Blanquirroja thanks to the goals of Juan Carlos Oblitas, Oswaldo Ramírez, and Hugo Sotil.[79] Aside from these two victories, Peru's best place in the tournament have been four third places, two in 1927 and 1935 in Peru, one in 1949 in Brazil, and the last in 1955 in Chile.

When the tournaments once again began to be hosted by individual countries, Peru's best place was in 1997 when they gained fourth place after losing to Mexico for the third place match. In 2004, Peru once again hosted the tournament, but did not manage to get beyond the quarterfinals. This same story would repeat itself in 2007, and now the team looks on to the 2011 tournament to be held in Argentina.

Copa America/South American Championship
Total: 2 Titles
Year Position Year Position Year Position
1916-1926Absent1949Third Place1987Round 1
1927Third Place1953Fifth Place1989Round 1
1929Fourth Place1955Third Place1991Round 1
1935Third Place1956Sixth Place1993Quarterfinals
1937Sixth place1957Fourth Place1995Round 1
1939Winners1959Fourth Place1997Fourth Place
1941Fourth Place1963Fifth place1999Quarterfinals
1942Fifth place1967Withdrew2001Quarterfinals
1947Fifth Place1983Semifinals2011TBP

Other tournaments and records

Medal record
Bolivarian Games
Gold 1938 Bogotá NA
Gold 1947-48 Lima NA
Bronze 1951 Caracas NA
Gold 1961 Barranquilla NA
Gold 1973 Panama City NA
Bronze 1977 La Paz NA
Gold 1981 Barquisimeto NA
Bronze 2000 Gold Cup NA
Copa Centenario de Armenia
Bronze 1989 Armenia NA
Kirin Cup
Gold 1999 Japan NA
Gold 2005 Japan NA
Marlboro Cup
Silver 1989 New York NA
Men’s Pre-Olympic Football
Silver 1960 Peru NA
Bronze 1964 Peru NA
Bronze 1980 Colombia NA
Nike United States Cup
Bronze 1997 U.S. Cup NA

Aside from FIFA or CONMEBOL sponsored tournaments, the national football team of Peru has been invited to join a variety of different tournaments throughout the world. In 1938, Peru participated and won at the inaugural Bolivarian Games, and would win it four more times before the tournament was officially restricted to U-21 teams.[80] Later, in 1986, Peru was invited to participate in its first Asian tournament, the Nehru Cup of India. In 1989, Peru participated in the Copa Centenario de Armenia 1989, which took place in the city of Armenia, Colombia, and the squad led by José Fernández reached a third place in the competition.[81] That same year, Peru participated in the Marlboro Cup, and the team was able to get away with a second place.[82] Eight years later, Peru was invited to join the 1997 U.S. Cup in which they started out beating the United States 1–0, lost to Denmark 1–2, and tied with Mexico (the eventual champions of the competition) 0–0.[83]

In the year 2000, the team was invited to join the CONCACAF Gold Cup tournament along with Colombia and South Korea.[84] Positioned in Group B of the tournament, Peru had a bad start at the competition as they tied 1–1 with Haiti, and lost to the United States 1-0.[84] Surprisingly, this was enough for Peru to advance and face Honduras, which had ended first in their group.[84] Peru was able to win this quarterfinals match with a surprising 5–3 result.[85] The final match of the team turned out disastrous as the Peruvian defenders made a series of mistakes, including an own goal, and the only goal of Peru against Colombia came thanks to Roberto Palacios; Colombia defeated Peru 2–1.[86]

In 1999 and 2005, Peru was invited to join an event hosted in Japan known as the Kirin Cup. This event would become the third international tournament, after the Copa America and the Bolivarian Games, in which Peru would emerge victorious. In 1999, the Blanquirroja tied with Belgium 1–1, and tied with Japan 0–0; and thus achieved a shared first place with Belgium.[87] In 2005, Peru started out in the tournament by defeating Japan 1–0, but would later get a 0–0 tie against the United Arab Emirates. Thus, Peru repeated the past tournament's result and shared first place with the United Arab Emirates.[88]


Peru's colors are red and white.[89] The team's first football kit was made for the 1927 South American Championship, and it consisted of white shorts and a shirt with vertical stripes. The second football kit was made for the 1930 FIFA World Cup held in Uruguay, and was an all white kit with a red collar. The third kit was made for the 1935 South American Championship, with the only difference from its prior kit being a horizontal red stripe. Peru's current kit was made for the 1936 Berlin Summer Olympics, and it consists of a red stripe that crosses the chest diagonally from the left shoulder to the hip's right.[4]


Peru and Chile have a rivalry that dates back from the War of the Pacific. Territorial, maritime, and cultural disputes have fueled tensions since the ending of the war. Additionally, both nations dispute the origin of the football move known as the bicycle kick.[90] This has led to a large football rivalry between both nations, and their games tend to be rough and competitive. Their games have gained the nickname of Clasico del Pacifico, meaning the "Derby of the Pacific," and a trophy named Copa del Pacifico is disputed whenever both national teams play.[2][32] CNN considers this football rivalry to be among the top ten in the world.[90]

Peru also holds a rivalry with Ecuador as a result of various border conflicts. However, although both national teams play highly competitive games in matches nicknamed as "The Pride Match," the rivalry tends to be greater from the Ecuadorian side.[3]


Statistics provided by historian Jaime Pulgar Vidal and RSSSF.[32][91]

Top 10 most successful

Name Peru career Played Success % Win % Draw % Lose % # Titles
22x20px Jack Greenwell 1938-1939 8 100.00 100.00 0.00 0.00 2
Peru Arturo Fernández 1948-1950 7 71.43 71.43 0.00 28.57 1
Peru Juan Valdivieso 1954-1955 7 71.43 42.86 28.57 28.57 0
Peru Juan Carlos Oblitas 1996-1999 38 65.78 42.10 23.68 34.21 0
Peru Marcos Calderón 1975-1979 41 63.41 41.46 21.95 36.59 1
Brazil "Didi" Pereira 1969-1970 31 61.29 45.16 16.13 38.72 0
22x20px Roberto Scarone 1972-1973 18 61.11 50.00 11.11 38.89 1
Peru Freddy Ternero 1997 Copa America




57.18 42.86 14.29 42.86 1
Peru Alberto Denegri 1936-1937 7 57.14 42.86 14.28 42.86 0
22x20px György Orth 1957-1959 9 55.56 44.44 11.12 44.44 0
Totals 172 61.78 47.67 14.11 38.22 6

Managers with best winning record are selected, and the combined draw% and win% are calculated as success%.

Current manager

Name Peru career Played Won Drawn Lost Win % # Titles
Peru José "Chemo" del Solar 2007-present 21 3 6 12 14.29 0

Updated to game with Brazil in 04-01-2009.


Current Squad

Head coach: Peru Jose "Chemo" del Solar.

No. Pos. Player DoB (Age) Caps Goals Club
1 GK Leao Butrón February 9, 1976 2 -3 Peru Universidad San Martín
2 DF Alberto Rodríguez September 23 1984 17 2 22x20px Sporting Braga
4 DF Walter Vílchez May 30, 1982 0 0 22x20px Puebla F.C.
5 DF Carlos Zambrano July 10, 1989 6 1 22x20px FC Schalke 04
6 DF Juan Manuel Vargas October 21, 1982 10 2 22x20px Fiorentina
7 MF Nolberto Solano December 12, 1974 88 20 Peru Universitario
8 MF Rainer Torres September 21 1984 11 0 Peru Universitario de Deportes
9 FW Piero Alva February 14, 1979 14 3 22x20px Club Brugge
10 MF Luis Alberto Ramírez November 10, 1984 0 1 22x20px Club Libertad
11 MF Miguel Angel Torres January 12 1982 0 0 Peru Universitario de Deportes
12 GK Raúl Fernández July 26, 1989 0 0 Peru Universitario
13 DF Amilton Prado March 20 1980 27 0 Peru Sporting Cristal
14 DF Paolo de la Haza May 20 1983 0 0 Peru Alianza Lima
15 FW Daniel Chávez January 8, 1988 5 0 22x20px Club Brugge
16 MF Pedro García March 14, 1974 2 1 Peru Universidad San Martín
17 FW Johan Fano August 9, 1978 0 1 Colombia Once Caldas
24 MF Miguel Cevasco May 2 1986 2 1 22x20px Hapoel Ironi Kiryat Shmona F.C.
26 MF Rinaldo Cruzado October 20 1984 11 0 22x20px Esteghlal
- FW Hernán Rengifo April 18, 1983 9 2 22x20px Lech Poznań

Notable players

File:Teofilo Cubillas.png
Teófilo Cubillas, Peru's top goalscorer and player of the 20th century.[92]

According to CONMEBOL, Peruvian teams are often said to play with much technique and elegance, generally making them one of the finest exponents of South American football.[93] Among the notable players of the team are center forwards Teodoro Fernández, Valeriano López, and Pedro Pablo León;[93][94] second strikers like Alejandro Villanueva, Jorge Alcalde, and Hugo Sotil;[93][94][95] wingers like Juan Carlos Oblitas, Juan Joya and Juan Seminario, among others.[96][97][98] Recently, strikers such as Jefferson Farfán and Paolo Guerrero have attained international fame.[94] Along with a good quantity of forwards, the Peruvian squad has also enjoyed a series of creative and effective midfielders such as Alberto Terry, Teófilo Cubillas, César Cueto, Roberto Challe and Julio César Uribe.[93][94][99] Currently, Peru features midfielders such as Nolberto Solano, and Roberto Palacios.[100] In the defense, the Blanquirroja has had players such as Héctor Chumpitaz, Julio Meléndez, and Peru's current star Juan Manuel Vargas.[93][101][102] In terms of historic goalkeepers, the team's popular figures are Juan Valdivieso, José Soriano, and Ramón Quiroga.[94][103][104]


File:Peru Fair Play.png
The Fairplay Trophy award that FIFA gave Peru in the 1970 FIFA World Cup.

Roberto Palacios holds Peru's records for most appearances with the national team, having played 122 times between 1992 and 2007. Héctor Chumpitaz, with 105 appearances, and Jorge Soto, with 101 appearances, follow in second and third respectively. For goalkeepers, Oscar Ibañez holds the most appearances with 50 caps, followed by Miguel Miranda (47 caps) and Ramón Quiroga (40 caps).[105]

Teófilo Cubillas holds the team's record of top goalscorer with 26 goals in 81 appearances. Teodoro Fernández is in second, but holds a better goal per appearance average with 24 goals in 32 appearances. Still active in the national team and in third place is Nolberto Solano, who has 20 goals in 89 appearances.[105]

Hugo Sotil, Héctor Chumpitaz, and Teófilo Cubillas were the three players of the Peruvian football team that were part of the starting line-up of the America national football team that played against the Europe national football team in 1973 at the Nou Camp of FC Barcelona. Sotil scored America's second goal, and Chumpitaz scored the tying goal (4–4); America beat Europe 7-6 in the penalty rounds.[106]

The largest margin of victory achieved by Peru is a 9–1 score against Ecuador in the inaugural Bolivarian Games. The team's record defeat took place in the 1997 Copa América, when Brazil defeated Peru by a score of 7–0.[32]

Peru is the first team that received a FIFA Fair Play Trophy. The Peruvians received the award in the 1970 FIFA World Cup due to them being the only team that received no yellow or red cards in their games.[107]


Memorable games

File:Peru Scotland.png
The team celebrate their victory over Scotland in the World Cup game of 1978.

The Blanquirroja has had plenty of memorable matches throughout its history. Among the earliest is the 1936 game Austria v Peru, in which the Peruvians won by a score of 4–2 in a controversial match that to this day holds a mystery relating to what actually happened in said game.[24] In FIFA World Cup qualifications, Peru's memorable games include the infamous 1–2 loss to Bolivia in 1969, which match referee Sergio Chechelev later admitted to having been paid by Argentina in order to give Bolivia the victory;[108] and the 2–2 tie with Argentina in 1969 known popularly in Peru as La Bombonera.[109]

Although Peru has had only four appearances to the FIFA World Cup, a series of their few games are remembered by fans. In the 1970 World Cup, the national squad overcame Bulgaria 3–2 after trailing 0–2,[110] and lost to Brazil 4–2 in the quarterfinals match. For the 1978 World Cup, the game Scotland v Peru is famously remembered as the Peruvians overcame the Scottish squad by a score of 3–1,[111] and the game Argentina v Peru is infamously remembered as a match which the Peruvians were allegedly paid to lose by the Argentinean junta with a score of 0–6.[112]

Recent and future matches

Date Venue Opponents Result Score Event
Apr 1, 2009 Estádio José Pinheiro Borba, Porto Alegre
 Brazil Loss 0 - 3 2010 FIFA World Cup qualification
Jun 6, 2009 TBA
Lima, Peru
 Ecuador 2010 FIFA World Cup qualification


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External links

Preceded by
Inaugural Champions
Bolivarian Champions
1938 (First title)
1947-48 (Second title)
Succeeded by
1951 Colombia 
Preceded by
1937 Argentina 22x20px
South American Champions
1939 (First title)
Succeeded by
1941 Argentina 22x20px
Preceded by
1951 Colombia 
Bolivarian Champions
1961 (Third title)
Succeeded by
1965 Ecuador 
Preceded by
1970 Bolivia 
Bolivarian Champions
1973 (Fourth title)
Succeeded by
1977 Bolivia 
Preceded by
Inaugural Champions
Mariscal Sucre Champions
1973 (First title)
Succeeded by
1973 Bolivia 
Preceded by
1967 Uruguay 22x20px
South American Champions
1975 (Second title)
Succeeded by
1979 Paraguay 22x20px
Preceded by
1977 Bolivia 
Bolivarian Champions
1981 (Fifth title)
Succeeded by
U-20 Tournaments
Preceded by
1998 Japan 
Kirin Cup Champions
1999 (First title)
Succeeded by
2000 Slovakia 22x20px
Preceded by
2004 Japan 
Kirin Cup Champions
2005 (Second title)
Succeeded by
2006 Scotland 22x20px
ar:منتخب بيرو لكرة القدم

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