Nickname(s)La Blanquirroja, La Rojiblanca
(the white and red)
AssociationFederación Peruana
de Fútbol
ConfederationCONMEBOL (South America)
Head coachPeru José del Solar
CaptainNolberto Solano
Most capsRoberto Palacios & Edgar Rojas (122)
Top scorerTeófilo Cubillas (26)
Home stadiumEstadio Nacional (Since 2003)
First colours
Second colours
FIFA ranking
Highest10 (September 1997)
Lowest76 (February 2003)
First international
Peru Peru 4 - 4 Uruguay 
(Lima, Peru; November 1, 1927)
Biggest win
Peru Peru 9 - 0 Ecuador 
(Bogotá, Colombia; 11 August 1938)
Biggest defeat
 Brazil 7 - 4 Peru Peru
(Santa Cruz, Bolivia; 26 June, 1997)
World Cup
Appearances4 (first in 1930)
Best resultQuarterfinals, 1970
Copa América
Appearances34 (first in 1927)
Best resultWinners, 1939 and 1975

The Peru national football team is controlled by the Federación Peruana de Fútbol (FPF) and represents Peru in international football competitions. Created in 1927, the team competes with nine other teams in the CONMEBOL conference within FIFA. The majority of Peru's home matches are held at the national multi-use stadium, the Estadio Nacional, with friendlies sometimes hosted at club stadiums. The Peruvian teams are often said to play with much technique and elegance, making them one of the finest exponents of South American football.[1]

Peru has qualified to four FIFA World Cups and two Olympic tournaments, reaching the quarterfinals of both tournaments, and has won the Copa América in two occasions. Historically, Peru's traditional rival is the football team of Chile.[2] Nonetheless, the competitive zone in which the team is located has often led to various other football rivalries, such as those with Ecuador and Mexico.

During the 1930s, featuring players such as Teodoro Fernández and Alejandro Villanueva, Peru participated in the first FIFA World Cup, the controversial 1936 Summer Olympics, won at the inauguration of the Bolivarian Games, and won their first Copa América in 1939. Later, between 1970 and 1982 and with players such as Hector Chumpitaz, Hugo Sotil, and Teofilo 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.[3][4] With this team, Peru qualified for three FIFA World Cups and won the Copa América in 1975. Currently, Peru has gained a series of disastrous results that have led it on a downfall in the rankings.


Main article: History of the Peru national football team

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.[5] During their free time, the English sailors resorted to playing football and they invited the local Chalacos (people from Callao) to participate in their games. 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.[6] Further promoting the growth of the sport, British residents of Peru and Peruvians returning from England began to increment the practice of football.[7]

Soon, the sports rivalry that evolved between the foreigners and the Chalacos began to gain much attention from people elsewhere.[7] and 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.[8][9][10] 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.[11] By this time more Peruvian cities had developed their own football clubs and leagues, the most important being those of Lima, Cusco, and Arequipa.[12][13][14][15] 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.[16] 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.[17]

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 football team that would officially participate in the tournaments.[18]

However, an unofficial national team was created in 1922, and it played against a Uruguayan team sponsored by the Asociación Uruguaya de Fútbol.[18] The time that followed saw the appearance of a group of excellent Peruvian football players and teams. During the 1920s and 1930s, 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,[19] Venezuela,[20][21] and Chile.[22][23][24][25]

Finally, in 1927 a national football team was officially created for Peru.[26] 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 the Argentina 5-1.[27] However, 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.[28] A year later, the Blanquirroja was invited by FIFA to participate in a new intercontinental competition to be held in Uruguay, the first World Cup.[29]

1930s Golden Generation

File:1936 Peru Olympians Returning.png
The historic Olympic team of the 1930s receives a warm welcome from supporters.

The 1930s proved to be Peru's best early years as the national team participated and won a variety of different tournaments. The squad followed a 2-3-5 formation and was generally composed of Alejandro Villanueva, Teodoro Fernandez, Adelfo Magallanes, Arturo Paredes and Jorge Alcalde as the forwards; Segundo Castillo, Carlos Tovar, and Pablo Pasache as the midfielders; Arturo Fernandez and Raul Chapel as the defenders; and Juan Valdivieso as the goalkeeper.[30][31][32]

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.[33] By 1934, the skill of the Peruvian players attained popularity beyond Peru's borders, and in March of that year the Blanquirroja 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 squad would make a tour in the European countries of England, Germany, France, and Spain until August of 1935; and Teodoro Fernandez became the team's top goal scorer with 48 goals in 39 games.[34]

Later, during 1936 Berlin Olympics, Peru made a great start by defeating the Finland national football team with a margin of 7-3. Even more surprisingly, the Peruvians defied all odds and managed to defeat Austria on a 4-2 result during over-time. However, the team formally withdrew due to a controversial situation with the International Olympic Committee and the German government that led to the nullification of Peru's victory against Austria and the ordering a re-match.[35][36]

In 1938, Peru's first international title would finally come during the first Bolivarian Games, which Peru won after winning all their games against the football teams of Bolivia, Ecuador, Colombia, and Venezuela.[37] Then, the 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.[32] Thus, 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 tie Argentina twice in two games to finally lose in the third match by 3-0.[38] The national squad's slow change and bad situation was most obvious during the early South American Championships of the 1940s. By 1941, the Blanquirroja still had effective but old players like Teodoro Fernandez in their lines.[39] In 1947, the squad regained their title of champions at the Bolivarian Games.[37] However, Peru would not even 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.[40]

Suddenly, by the 1950s, Peru once again found itself a major protagonist in South American football. In the Pan-American Championship of 1952 the Peruvians defeated Panama and Mexico, tied Brazil, and lost to Chile and Uruguay by minimal differences.[41] Players such as Alberto Terry, Guillermo Barbadillo, Valeriano López, Felix 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.[41] In the South American Championship of 1955, this national squad led a campaign that made them reach third place in Chile.[42] 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.[41] The last years of the 1950s continued the good football of the Blanquirroja as they reached fourth place in the South American Championships of 1957 and 1959, and for the first time defeated the The Three Lions squad of Walter Winterbottom by a score of 4-1.[43][44][41]

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.[37] 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. Nevertheless, this story would soon change once in the 1970s.

1970s Golden Generation

The golden generation of the 1970s poses for a picture. Top: Pedro Gonzales, Ramon Mifflin, Héctor Chumpitaz, Luis Rubiños, Nicolás Fuentes, Orlando de la Torre. Bottom: Julio Baylon, Roberto Challe, Pedro Pablo León, Teófilo Cubillas, Alberto Gallardo.

The story of this generation started in late 1969, when the Blanquirroja managed to qualify for the Mexico 1970 World Cup. Thanks to the goals of "Cachito" Ramirez, 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).[45] 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.[46]

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 after trailing 0-2, defeating Morocco 3-0, and losing 3-1 to Germany.[47] Although Peru lost the quarterfinal game to Brazil by 4-2, the 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.[41] Additionally, the squad would achieve South American glory as they achieved their second Copa America in 1975.[48]

In 1978, the Blanquirroja once again qualified for a World Cup. The squad led by Marcos Calderon 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 Ramon Quiroga as the goalkeeper.[49]

Prior to the World Cup, the national squad defeated varied opponents such as China and Hungary.[41] Once into the World Cup finals, Peru reached the top of their group after defeating the Scotland of Ally McLeod (3-1), tying with the Netherlands, and defeating Iran (4-1).[49] 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.[49][50] 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.[41]

From Glory to Decadence

The Blanquirroja continued to show signs of shine in the 1980s. The team managed to successfully qualify for the 1982 qualifiers at the expense of Colombia and, the favorites and Mundialito winners, Uruguay.[51] Under the direction of Elba de Padua Lima, the Peruvians won the Copa del Pacifico and led a European and African tour in which the Blanquirroja defeated Hungary at Budapest (2-1), France at Paris (1-0), tied Algeria at Algiers (1-1), and upon their return defeated Romania at Lima (2-0).[41] 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.[52]

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.[52] Afterwards, Peru would face a string of bad results, but nearly qualified to the 1986 FIFA World Cup.[41] The Peruvians needed a victory against Argentina in order to directly qualify to the World Cup, but the Argentina of Diego Armando Maradona pulled off a tie that led Peru to seek qualification through a play-off game against Chile. The Chileans defeated the Blanquirroja 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.[41]

The terrible 1987 Alianza Lima air disaster further crushed the hopes for the team as a series of good players ready to play for Peru and coach Marcos Calderon (among others) died.[53] The situation of Peru would not improve from that point as a series of ties and defeats came one after the other.[41] However, 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.[54] Later, the team would win the Kirin Cup in 1999 and reached the quarterfinals of the Copa America of that same year.[55] Players like Nolberto Solano, Andres Mendoza, Flavio Maestri, Roberto Palacios, Claudio Pizarro, and Jose del Solar made somewhat of a positive difference during these years.[55]


Blanquirroja in the Copa América Venezuela 2007. Left to Right: Jose Paolo Guerrero, Jefferson Farfan, Edgar Rojas, Leao Butron, and Claudio Pizarro.

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.[56] As the years kept going, Peruvian football once more started to give signs of vitality as local teams from the league began doing rather well in international competitions, including Cienciano's 2004 conquest of the Copa Sudamericana and the Recopa Sudamericana.[57] Even though Peru won another Kirin Cup in 2005, they were not able to get past the quarterfinals in three consecutive Copa America (2001, 2004, and 2007).[41] Furthermore, the team was not able to qualify for the 2002 or the 2006 FIFA World Cup.

Nonetheless, in 2007, the football fans of Peru received a great surprise as the national U-17 squad qualified and reached the quarterfinals (for their 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 at the end of the year 2008. If that were not enough, in November 25, 2008, the Peruvian Football Federation, the Peruvian league, referees and officials, and national football team were suspended by FIFA due to the problems between the Peruvian Football Federation and the Peruvian Institute of Sport.[58] Almost a month later, in December 20, 2008, the suspension of Peru was lifted by FIFA president Joseph Blatter.[59] Yet, with young star players like Jefferson Farfan and Jose Paolo Guerrero, the possibilities for Peru keep expanding, and the team seeks to once more reach the best of the world in the 2010 FIFA World Cup to be held in South Africa.


Main article: Estadio Nacional (Lima)

Main article: Estadio Monumental "U"

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

The Estadio Nacional, a 45,574-spectator stadium located in Lima, is the traditional home of the Peruvian team and the National Stadium of Peru.[60] 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. Leguia, the stadium was renovated and renamed the Estadio Nacional. Later, under the government of Manuel Odria, the stadium was reconstructed and officially re-inaugurated on October 27, 1952.[61]

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.[62] Even though the national stadium was one of the four Peruvian stadiums that received the "Star II" certification,[63] it has received heavy criticism from clubs of the Peruvian First Division because of the alleged injuries it causes to players. Due to this reason, the national team has decided to temporarily not make use of the stadium.

Alternate Stadiums

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 Agustin of Iquitos can prove to be a good strategy for the team.[64] Also, using popular stadiums in Lima, like the Estadio Alejandro Villanueva, can sometimes be an option for the team due to the supportive crowd.[65] 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.

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 oficially opened in they year 2000. Currently, it is Peru’s largest and most modern stadium. Also, it is the third largest stadium in South America, behind the Maracanã in Brazil and the Monumental Isidro Romero Carbo in Ecuador.[66] The stadium was built in accordance with FIFA’s manual of technical specifications for stadiums, and has a spectator-capacity of 80,093.[66][67]

FIFA World Cup record

Year Round Year Round
Uruguay 1930 Round 1 West Germany 1974 Round 4
Italy 1934 Withdrew Argentina 1978 Round 2
France 1938 Semi-Finals Spain 1982 Round 1
Brazil 1950 Round 3 Mexico 1986 Did not Qualify
Switzerland 1954 Withdrew Italy 1990 Did not Qualify
Sweden 1958 Did not Qualify United States 1994 Did not Qualify
Chile 1962 Semi-Finals France 1998 Did not Qualify
England 1966 Round 1 South KoreaJapan 2002 Did not Qualify
Mexico 1970 Quarterfinals Germany 2006 Did not Qualify
Total 4/18

Qualifiers and participations

Main article: Peru at the FIFA World Cup

File:Monumental Sur Camiseta.JPG
The southern stand of the Estadio Monumental U 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.[68]

In the 1930 tournament turned Peru was grouped against Uruguay, the recent Olympic champions, and Romania. The Blanquirroja lost both of its matches, although they allegedly played a dignifying match against Uruguay in the inauguration of the Estadio Centenario.[69] During the match against Romania, Peru's Placido Galindo became the first player to be sent off during a World Cup.[70]

In 1970, the team led by Waldir "Didi" Pereira beat Bulgaria 3-2 after trailing 0-2 by half-time,[71] defeated over Morocco 3-0, lost to Germany 1-3, and were eliminated by Brazil 4-2 in the quarterfinal match.[72][73] Later, the squad would go on to qualify for the 1978 cup held in Argentina, where they famously beat Scotland 3-0[74][75] 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.[76] Among other memorable events that took place during that world cup, Peru qualified first in its group for its first time after drawing with the Netherlands at 0-0 and beating Iran 4-1.[77][78] By the time the Spain 1982 World Cup came, the Peruvian squad was seen as a favorite, but Peru demonstrated little to nothing as they tied with Cameroon and Italy and, later, were beat by Poland with a score of 5-1.[79]

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 Armando 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 best of the world in their campaign to the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

Copa América record

Copa America/South American Championship
Total: 2 Titles
Year Position Year Position Year Position
Argentina 1916 No Participation Peru 1939 Winners Uruguay 1967 Withdrew
Uruguay 1917 No Participation Chile 1941 Fourth Place 1975 Winners
Brazil 1919 No Participation Uruguay 1942 Fifth place 1979 Semifinals
Chile 1920 No Participation Chile 1945 Withdrew 1983 Semifinals
Argentina 1921 No Participation Argentina 1946 Withdrew Argentina 1987 Round 1
Brazil 1922 No Participation Ecuador 1947 Fifth Place Brazil 1989 Round 1
Uruguay 1923 No Participation Brazil 1949 Third Place Chile 1991 Round 1
Uruguay 1924 No Participation Peru 1953 Fifth Place Ecuador 1993 Quarterfinals
Argentina 1925 No Participation Chile 1955 Third Place Uruguay 1995 Round 1
Chile 1926 No Participation Uruguay 1956 Sixth Place Bolivia 1997 Fourth Place
Peru 1927 Third Place Peru 1957 Fourth Place Paraguay 1999 Quarterfinals
Argentina 1929 Fourth Place Argentina 1959 Fourth Place Colombia 2001 Quarterfinals
Peru 1935 Third Place Ecuador 1959 Withdrew Peru 2004 Quarterfinals
Argentina 1937 Sixth place Bolivia 1963 Fifth place Venezuela 2007 Quarterfinals

Participation history

Main article: Peru at the Copa America

File:Peru CopaAmerica 1975Champs.png
Julio Melendez and Hector Chumpitaz hoist the Copa America of 1975.

After joining CONMEBOL in 1925, Peru has hosted the Copa America six times and won it twice. Peru has had two top goalscorers for the tournament, Teodoro Fernandez (7 goals, 1939) and Eduardo Malasquez (3 goals, 1983).[80] The 1927 tournament was held in Peru, and the national squad gained third place. Peru would go on to repeat the same stunt when it held the tournament in 1935. However, in 1939 Peru achieved its first Copa America title by defeating Ecuador 5-2, Chile 3-1, and Paraguay 3-0 in order to reach the final. With star players like Teodoro Fernandez and Jorge Alcalde, Peru defeated Uruguay in the final by the close score of 2-1.[81] Peru thus became the fourth nation, after Uruguay, Brazil, and Argentina, to win the Copa America. The Blanquirroja would go on to host the Copa America two more times in 1953 and 1957, but would only reach as far as third on 1949 and 1955.

Finally, in 1975, the Peruvians won the first Copa America held without a fixed venue. The team first had to make it out of the group stages by defeating Chile and Bolivia. Once in the semi-finals, the squad defeated Brazil at the Mineirão by a score of 3-1. Enrique Casaretto and Teofilo Cubillas made the difference in that game, but the victory would be sour as the squad would go on to lose in Lima's Estadio Alejandro Villanueva to Brazil by 2-0. At this point a sorting had to be made in order to randomly choose one of the two teams, and Peru won the spot.[82] 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 the Blanquirroja thanks to the goals of Juan Carlos Oblitas, Oswaldo Ramirez, and Hugo Sotil.[82]

Afterwards, the national squad gained two consecutive third places in 1979 and 1983. 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 became the hosts of 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.

Olympic Record

Olympic Games History
Year Round Score Result
1936 Round of 16  Peru 7 – 3  Finland Win
Quarter Finals  Peru 4 – 2  Austria Win(*)
1960 Round 1  Peru 1 – 2  France Loss
Round 1  Peru 2 – 6  Hungary Loss
Round 1  Peru 3 – 1  India Win

Participation history

Main article: Peru at the Olympics

1936 football team that participated in Berlin Summer Olympics. Front Row: Adelfo Magallanes, Jorge Alcalde, Teodoro Fernández, José Morales, and Alejandro Villanueva. Back Row: Carlos Tovar, José María Lavalle, Juan Valdivieso, Arturo Fernández, Segundo Castillo, and Orestes Jordán.

Peru was invited to join the Olympics for its first time in 1936,[83] when they were to be held at Berlin. Among the line of players featured in this first parcipation of the Blanquirroja were Alejandro Villanueva, Teodoro Fernández, Juan Valdivieso, and Adelfo Magallanes.[84] The team won their first two matches, first against Finland with a 7-3 result, and later against Austria in the quarterfinals with a 4-2 result.[84][83] A rematch was demanded, and Peru failed to attend the discussions due to a German parade.[84][83] At the end, the Peruvian defense was never heard, and the Olympic Commitee scheduled the rematch to be taken under close grounds on August 10, and later re-scheduled to be taken on August 11.[84] As a sign of protest against these actions, which the Peruvians deemed as insulting and discriminatory, the complete Olympic delegations of Peru and Colombia left Germany.[85][86] 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 might have had some involvement in this situation.[35]

After 24 years, Peru once again qualified for the football tournament at the 1960 Summer Olympics held in Rome with their U-23 football team. The team started out with a surprise as Angel Uribe scored a 1st minute goal against France.[87] Peru would go on to lose 2-1 against the French, and were later beaten by Hungary in a result of 6-2, with only Alberto Ramirez scoring goals for the Blanquirroja.[88] The last match was played against India, and Peru won it with a 3-1 score with goals of Nicolas Nieri and Thomas Iwasaki.[89]

Peru has not qualified again to the tournament since 1960, but were close to qualifying again in the 1964 and 1980 CONMEBOL Men Pre-Olympic Tournament. Starting on 2007, the qualification tournament focused only on the U-20 football team, leaving the senior sides out of the Olympic tournaments.

Other tournaments

Peru national football team
Medal record
Bolivarian Games
Bronze medal – third place 1951 Caracas NA
Bronze medal – third place 1977 La Paz NA
Bronze medal – third place 2000 Gold Cup NA
Marlboro Cup
Silver medal – second place 1989 New York NA
Men’s Pre-Olympic Football
Silver medal – second place 1960 Peru NA
Bronze medal – third place 1964 Peru NA
Bronze medal – third place 1980 Colombia NA

See also: 1997 U.S. Cup

See also: 2000 CONCACAF Gold Cup

See also: Kirin Cup

The national football team of Peru has been invited to join a variety of different tournaments throughout the world. The first invitation took place in 1986, when Peru participated in the Nehru Cup of India. Later, 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 Jose Fernandez reached a third place in the competition.[90] That same year, Peru participated in the Marlboro Cup, and the team was able to get away with a second place.[91] 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.[92]

In the year 2000, the Blanquirroja was invited to join the CONCACAF Gold Cup tournament along with Colombia and South Korea.[93] 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.[93] Surprisingly, the tie with Haiti was enough to bring Peru to the next round, and there the Peruvians were to face Honduras, which had ended first in their group.[93] However, Peru was able to win the quarterfinals match with a surprising 5-3 result.[94] 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.[95]

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.[96] 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.[97]


Peru's colors are red and white.[98] 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.[99]

Football rivalries

Main article: Chile and Peru football rivalry

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. This has led to a large football rivalry between both nations. The games between them 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 whenver both national teams play.[2].[41]

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.[100]


Main article: Managers of the Peru national football team

File:Peru Coaches.png
Valdir Pereira, Jack Greenwell, and Marcos Calderon.

Top 10 Most Successful

Name Peru career Played Won Drawn Lost Win % Draw % Lose % # Titles
England Jack Greenwell 1938-1939 8 8 0 0 100.00 0.00 0.00 2
Peru Arturo Fernández 1948-1950 7 5 0 2 71.43 0.00 28.57 1
Uruguay Roberto Scarone 1972-1973 18 9 2 7 50.00 11.11 38.89 1
Brazil Valdir "Didi" Pereira 1969-1970 31 14 5 12 45.16 16.13 38.72 0
Hungary György Orth 1957-1959 9 4 1 4 44.44 11.12 44.44 0
Peru Freddy Ternero 1997 Copa America










42.86 14.29 42.86 1
Peru Juan Valdivieso 1954-1955 7 3 2 2 42.86 28.57 28.57 0
Peru Alberto Denegri 1936-1937 7 3 1 3 42.86 14.28 42.86 0
Peru Juan Carlos Oblitas 1996-1999 38 16 9 13 42.10 23.68 34.21 0
Peru Marcos Calderon 1975-1979 41 17 9 15 41.46 21.95 36.59 1
Totals 172 82 29 61 47.67 14.11 38.22 6

Current Manager

Name Peru career Played Won Drawn Lost Win % # Titles
Peru José "Chemo" del Solar 2007-present 16 3 6 7 18.75 0

Statistics provided by historian Jaime Pulgar Vidal and RSSSF.[101][41]


Current squad

Head coach: Peru Jose "Chemo" del Solar.

No. Pos. Player Date of birth (age) Caps Goals Club
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 1GK Johnny Vegas February 9, 1976 2 -3 Peru Sport Ancash
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 1GK Julio Aliaga July 26, 1989 0 0 Peru Sporting Cristal
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 2DF Guillermo Salas October 21, 1974 10 0 Peru Universidad San Martín
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 2DF Carlos Zambrano July 10, 1989 6 0 Germany FC Schalke 04
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 2DF Juan Pajuelo September 23 1974 17 2 Peru Juan Aurich
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 2DF Aldo Corzo May 20 1989 0 0 Peru Alianza Lima
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 2DF Aurelio Saco-Vértiz May 30, 1989 0 0 Peru Universidad San Martín
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 2DF Adrián Zela March 20 1989 0 0 Peru Coronel Bolognesi
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 3MF Nolberto Solano December 12, 1974 45 6 Peru Universitario
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 3MF Edwin Pérez September 28, 1977 1 0 Peru Sporting Cristal
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 3MF Jean Ferrari July 15 1975 2 0 Peru Melgar
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 3MF Damián Ismodes June 10 1989 4 0 Spain Racing de Santander
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 3MF Daniel Sánchez May 2 1990 2 0 Peru Sporting Cristal
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 3MF Rinaldo Cruzado September 21 1984 11 0 Iran Esteghlal Tehran
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 3MF Anderson Cueto May 29 1989 0 0 Poland Lech Poznan
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 3MF Junior Núñez July 28 1989 0 0 Peru Sport Boys
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 3MF Pedro García March 14, 1974 2 1 Peru Universidad San Martín
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 4FW Junior Ross February 19, 1986 2 0 Germany FSV Frankfurt
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 4FW Antonio Meza Cuadra February 25, 1980 0 0 Peru Universidad César Vallejo
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 4FW Christian La Torre March 9, 1990 0 0 Peru Universitario

Current Youth Squad

Head coach: Peru Julio Cesar Uribe II.

No. Pos. Player Date of birth (age) Caps Goals Club
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 1GK Posa Tapo May 12, 1993 0 -0 United States New York Red Bull Academy
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 1GK Maxemiliano Vargaz July 26, 1992 1 0 Argentina San Lorenzo
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 2DF Raul Gostoso January 4, 1994 0 0 Ecuador La Liga De Quito U15
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 2DF Gustavo Chellini February 16, 1994 0 0 Canada Toronto Sharks FC
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 2DF Juan Usario July 3 1993 0 0 United States Real Madrid U16
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 2DF Samuel Cordozo April 11 1996 0 0 Peru Sport Boys Academy
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 2DF Jayme Tellez July 20, 1992 0 0 Peru Universitario De Deportes Youth
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 2DF Mauricio Tellez July 20 1992 0 0 Peru Universitario De Deportes Youth
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 3MF Paolo Prietto November 4, 1994 0 0 United States West Pines Fc Gold U17
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 3MF Jose Malvodo September 28, 1992 1 0 Peru Sporting Cristal
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 3MF Sergio Da Silva March 2 1995 0 0 United States Cristiano Ronaldo Academy Soccer Club
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 3MF Jefrei Veerli April 10 1993 0 0 Israel Sweich De Poland
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 3MF Jose Tevelso Chavez May 30 1993 0 0 Italy AC Milan Youth
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 3MF Rosaldo Pinto January 7 1994 0 0 Spain Barcelona Youth Academy
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 3MF Marcelo Cueto September 21 1996 0 0 Portugal Youth FC Porto
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 3MF Nano Pizzaro June 1 1994 0 0 Peru Universidad De Ilo
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 3MF Baria Jose Solano April 4 1994 0 0 United States Universidad Alianza Lima Academia
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 4FW Cristian Rojas May 17, 1994 0 0 United States Brazilian Twister Sports Club
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 4FW Alejandro Mejia december 3, 1994 0 0 Peru Universidad De Cubillas
  • |- class="nat-fs-player"
- 4FW Lozario Zapato May 28, 1996 0 0 Brazil Botafogo Youth

Notable players

Main article: List of Peru international footballers

Peru has had a series of notable footballers throughout its history. Among these are center forwards Teodoro Fernández, Valeriano López, and Pedro Pablo Leon;[103][104] [105] second strikers like Alejandro Villanueva, Jorge Alcalde, and Hugo Sotil;[106][107][105]wingers like Juan Carlos Oblitas, Juan Joya and Juan Seminario, among others.[108][109][110] More recently, strikers such as Jefferson Farfan and Paolo Guerrero have attained international fame.[111][112]Along with a good quantity of forwards, the Peruvian squad has also enjoyed a series of creative and effective midfielders. Among these stand Alberto Terry, Teófilo Cubillas, Cesar Cueto, and Roberto Challe.[105][113][114] The 1980s and 90s also brought in a series of good midfielders such as Julio Cesar Uribe, Nolberto Solano, and Roberto Palacios.[115][116][117]

However, although forwards and midfielders tend to hold the most popular positions, there have been several other important figures for Peru. In the defense, the Blanquirroja has had players such as Héctor Chumpitaz, Julio Meléndez, and Peru's current star Juan Manuel Vargas.[105][118][119] In terms of historic goalies, the team's most popular figures are Juan Valdivieso, Jose Soriano, Ramon Quiroga, and Óscar Ibáñez.[120][121]


Main article: Peru national football team records

With 122 caps, Roberto Palacios & Edgar Rojas holds Peru's records for most appearances with the national team. Héctor Chumpitaz (105) and Jorge Soto (101) follow behind. However, Teofilo Cubillas holds the team's record of top goalscorer with 26 goals. Teodoro Fernández (24) and Nolberto Solano (20) are in the next two spots.


Memorable Games

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.[84] 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;[122] and the 2-2 tie with Argentina in 1969 known popularly in Peru as La Bombonera.[123]

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,[124] 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,[125] 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.[126]

Recent and future matches

Main article: Peru national football team results and fixtures

Date Venue Opponents Result Score Event
Feb 11, 2009 Estadio Alejandro Villanueva
Lima, Peru
 Paraguay L 1 - 0 Friendly match
Mar 28, 2009 Estadio Monumental "U"
Lima, Perú
 Chile 2010 FIFA World Cup qualification
Apr 1, 2009 Estádio José Pinheiro Borba, Porto Alegre
 Brazil 2010 FIFA World Cup qualification


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Achievements Preceded by1937 Argentina  South American Champions 1939 (First title) Succeeded by1941 Argentina  Preceded by1967 Uruguay  South American Champions 1975 (Second title) Succeeded by1979 Paraguay  Preceded by1998 Japan  Kirin Cup Champions 1999 (First title) Succeeded by2000 Slovakia  Preceded by2004 Japan  Kirin Cup Champions 2005 (Second title) Succeeded by2006 Scotland  Preceded byInaugural Champions Bolivarian Champions 1938 (First title)1947-48 (Second title) Succeeded by1951 Colombia  Preceded by1951 Colombia  Bolivarian Champions 1961 (Third title) Succeeded by1965 Ecuador  Preceded by1970 Bolivia  Bolivarian Champions 1973 (Fourth title) Succeeded by1977 Bolivia  Preceded by1977 Bolivia  Bolivarian Champions 1981 (Fifth title) Succeeded byU-20 Tournaments

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