Top 12 Portuguese Best Soccer Players in the World

Have you ever wondered who the best Portuguese soccer players are? Or have you ever wondered which clubs do they belong to? 

Moreover, these talented players are considered heroes in their nation. Winning several championships in several different leagues, these top-tier players are often looked up to as idols by their fans.

Rui Costa and Ronaldo (Source: PotruGOAL)
Rui Costa and Ronaldo (Source: PotruGOAL)

In today’s article, we’ll find out about the top 12 best Portuguese soccer players and maybe some facts about them.

So, keep scrolling down and make sure to read each line, for you might miss a fact or two.

Top 12 Best Portuguese Soccer Player in the World

Today’s listing is based on the fan following, publicity, and success of the players. 

1Christiano RonaldoForward
3Luis FigoMidfielder
4Rui CostaMidfielder
6Paulo FutreWinger
7Ricardo CarvalhoCenter-back
8Ricardo QuaresmaWinger
9Fernando ChalanaWinger
10Pedro Miguel Carreiro ResendesStriker
11Pedro Miguel Carreiro ResendesWinger
12Joao MoutinhoMidfielder

12. Joao Moutinho

  • Height: 1.70 m (5 feet and 7 inches)
  • Net worth: $3 million

Joao Filipe Iria Santos Moutinho or most commonly known as Joao Moutinho, is the 12th best Portuguese soccer player on the list.

Born on 19th September 1986, he plays for the French league club (AS Monaco) and the Portuguese national team as a midfielder.  

Moutinho made his national football debut against Egypt on 17th August 2005 at the age of 18. Moreover, he won the friendly game with a score of 2-0. Thus, Moutinho’s performance and skills proved to be a great asset for his first club (Sporting CP).

Furthermore, he led the team to the UEFA Cup finals. Similarly, Moutinho holds around two Man of the Match awards. Not to forget, he also won the 2012-13 league championship with Porto.

11. Nani

  • Height: 1.78 m (5 ft and 10 in)
  • Net worth: $30 million

This is the name that no soccer lover would miss or forget. Yes! Luis Carlos Almeida da Cunha or also popularly known as Nani, is a Portuguese professional footballer.

Luis Carlos Almeida da Cunha (Source: Wikimedia)

Most importantly, he ranks 11th on today’s list of the best Portuguese soccer players. Likewise, the Portuguese star was born on 17th November 1986. Mainly playing
as a winger, he began his national team career in 2006.

Not to forget, Nani played his first game for the Portuguese team on 1st September 2006
marking his first goal with the team. Unfortunately, the Portuguese team lost to Denmark with a score of 4–2.

Similarly, in the Euro 2008 qualifiers, Nani played against Poland and Serbia. Above all, Nani became the Man of the Match on 16 February 2008, in the FA Cup Fourth Round against Arsenal.

10. Pauleta

  • Height: 1.80 m (5 ft and 11 in)
  • Net worth: $1.5 million

Pedro Miguel Carreiro Resendes, also known as Pauleta, is the 10th ranking player on today’s listing. But, unlike the other players, Pauleta is a retired one. 

Moreover, the Portuguese professional footballer played as a striker during his professional career. Talking about his career, he began his career with the local clubs before turning into a professional.

Pauleta joined Paris Saint-German FC around the 2003-2004 season. However, he retired at the age of 35 without playing any game in Portugal’s Primeira Liga.

Do read about the Top 20 Richest Boxers in the World 2022.

Not to forget, Pauleta was the top scorer of the PSG, with a total of 109 goals in 211 matches. However, the record was broken by another legend, Zlatan Ibrahimovic, in October 2015.

Also, Pauleta is the first Portuguese national team player to never play in the
Portuguese top-level game. Similarly, Pauleta played for his country in two World Cups and two European Championships.

9. Fernando Chalana

  • Height: 1.65 m (5 ft and 5 in)
  • Net worth: $1.5 million

Ranked 9th we have, Fernando Albino de Sousa Chalana, also known as the greatest Portuguese former football player and manager.

During his career, Chalana often got himself injured in matches. He mainly spent his professional career at Benfica, later working as a manager in the same club.

However, even though he was prone to many injuries and physical problems, he was still one of Portugal’s best soccer players at Euro 1984. Thus, Chalana led Portugal to the

8. Ricardo Quaresma

  • Height: 1.75 m (5 ft and 9 in)
  • Net worth: $40 million

Ricardo Andrade Quaresma Bernardo is one of the best Portuguese soccer players who plays as a winger for Vitória de Guimarães.

Likewise, Quaresma began his career at Sporting and later joined the Barcelona, Inter Milan, Chelsea, Porto (twice), Al-Ahli Dubai, Beşiktaş (twice), and Kasımpaşa before joining Vitória de Guimarães in 2020.

Ricardo Quaresma. (Source: Wikimedia)

Moreover, he is considered an unpredictable talent. Some of his tricks include the Rabona and Trivela (a bending shot with the outside of his right foot). These particular tricks done by him are responsible for his fame among fans around the world.

Above all, from 2003 to 2018, Quaresma won 80 caps, playing at three different European Championships. Further winning at the 2016 tournament and the 2018 World Cup.

7. Ricardo Carvalho

  • Height: 1.83 m (6 ft)
  • Net worth: $20 million

The retired former Portuguese professional soccer player Ricardo Alberto Silveira de Carvalho was one of the best center-backs in the country.

Ranked 7th on the best Portuguese soccer players list, Carvalho started his professional career at Porto. Not to forget, Carvalho’s transferred to Chelsea at an astonishing fee of around €30 million.

Furthermore, Carvalho won two Premier League titles simultaneously and one League Cup in his first two seasons with the Blues. Moreover, he was voted as the Player of the Year in 2008.

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Besides that, Carvalho led Chelsea to win the league and FA Cup two years later. This was the first Double in the club’s history.

Thus, after being with Chelsea for six years, Carvalho got transferred to Real Madrid at £6.7 million. Here, he proved himself by winning two domestic honors. 

6. Paulo Futre

  • Height: 1.75 m (5 ft and 9 in)
  • Net worth: $1-5 million

Paulo Jorge dos Santos Futre is one of the other best Portuguese soccer players to make this list. Born on 28th February 1966, he is a former Portuguese professional soccer player who played mainly as a left-winger.

Moreover, Futre was especially known for his exquisite dribbling skills. After starting his professional career at Sporting, he later moved to Porto. After joining Porto, he won the 1987 European Cup.

Paulo Futre. (Source: Wikimedia)

With his rising fame and success in the sport, he represented clubs in Spain, France, Italy, England, Japan, and Atlético Madrid.

Further, Futre appeared for Benfica in 1993. But, unfortunately, his following years were spoiled by frequent injury problems.

5. Deco

  • Height: 1.74 m (5 ft and 9 in)
  • Net worth: $25 million

Anderson Luís de Souza or most commonly known as Deco is a Brazilian-born Portuguese sports agent and retired professional soccer player. The 5th ranking Deco mainly played as an attacker or a central midfielder.

Furthermore, Deco started D20 Sports after completing his successful soccer career. To clarify, D20 Sports is an agency that specializes in managing Brazilian and Portuguese soccer players.

Not to forget, he is one of the very few players to have won the UEFA Champions League with two clubs (Porto in 2004 and Barcelona in 2006).

Besides, Deco was named the UEFA Club Footballer of the Year and UEFA Best Midfielder in Porto’s Champions League-winning season, later being named the Man of the Match in 2004 UEFA Champions League Final.

4. Rui Costa

  • Height: 1.80 m (5 feet and 11 inches)
  • Net worth: $10 million

The former Portuguese professional soccer player Rui Manuel César Costa is ranked 4th on today’s listing. Similarly, he is also the 34th president of sports club S.L. Benfica.

Not to forget, Costa is regarded as one of the best midfielders globally and one of the best Portuguese soccer players.

During his professional career, Costa usually played the role of an attacking midfielder. He was mainly known for his unique technique, playmaking ability.

Above all, he was named by Pelé in the FIFA 100 as one of the 125 greatest living football players ever to walk the stadium. Costa was Nicknamed “The Maestro” and “Il Musagete.”

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3. Luis Figo

  • Height: 1.80 m (5 feet and 11 inches)
  • Net worth: $50 million

Luis Filipe Madeira Caeiro Figo also known as Luis Figo was on born on 4th November
1972. Moreover, the former Portuguese professional soccer player is ranked third on today’s listing.

Likewise, Figo played as a midfielder for Sporting CP, Real Madrid, Barcelona, and Inter Mila during his professional career.

Similarly, while playing for the Portugal national team, Figo won 127 caps. However, this record was later surpassed by Cristiano Ronaldo and João Moutinho. He is considered one of the best Portuguese soccer players of his generation.

Not to forget, Figo’s 106 assists are considered the second-most in La Liga history, behind Lionel Messi.

2. Eusébio

  • Height: 1.75 m (5 ft and 9 in)
  • Net worth: $8 million

Eusébio da Silva Ferreira is the oldest one on today’s list (born 25 January 1942, died 5 January 2014). was a Mozambican-born Portuguese professional soccer player who played as a striker.

Eusébio is recognized as one of the greatest soccer players in Portugal and worldwide. The athlete is also considered the greatest player to ever play in S.L. Benfica. 

During his professional soccer career, he scored 733 goals in 745 matches (41 goals in 64 matches for Portugal). 

Moreover, Eusébio was nicknamed the Black Panther, the Black Pearl, or o Rei (the King). Besides, he was famous for his agility, technique, athleticism, and his fierce right-footed shot, making him an exceptional goalscorer.

1. Christiano Ronaldo

  • Height: 1.87 m (6 ft and 2 in)
  • Net worth: $500 million

We all can blindly tell who is the number one, best Portuguese soccer player, national pride/hero. The man, the myth, the legend, also called CR7, Cristiano Ronaldo Dos Santos Aveiro.

Over the past 20 years, Ronaldo has proven that he is the best in the sport multiple times. He is not only best at the sport but is also best as a leader and a giver.

Currently, Christiano plays as a forward for Manchester United and captain for the Portugal national team.

Not to forget, Christiano is the most decorated and most award holding soccer player. He has won five Ballon d’Or awards and four European Golden Shoes. It is the most received by a European player.

Cristiano Ronaldo (Source: Instagram)
Cristiano Ronaldo (Source: Instagram)

Similarly, he has won around 32 trophies, including 7 league titles, 5 UEFA Champions Leagues, 1 UEFA European Championship, and 1 UEFA Nations League.

Likewise, Ronaldo also holds the records for most appearances (180), most goals (139), and assists (42) in the Champions League.

He holds the most goals in the European Championship (14), most international goals by a male player (115), and most international appearances by a European male (182).

To clarify, Ronaldo is one of the very few players to have made over 1,100 professional career appearances and scored over 790 official senior career goals for club and country.


Hope the legends mentioned above and their stories inspired you just like they have inspired millions of people worldwide. Their struggle, dedication, and story give a vital life lesson to all of us.

With that said, hope you enjoyed our today’s listing. You can drop a comment down below and tell us who is your favorite player from the list and why. 

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  1. Eusebio imho is Portugal’s greatest all around player. He could win balls from opponents, beat defenders off the dribble at will, he was an excellent passer, he could score with either foot from in the box or from distance and he was an exceptional header of the ball.


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