Best EURO performance: runners-up 2004
Coach: Paulo Bento
Leading scorer: all-time – Pauleta (47); current – Cristiano Ronaldo (32)
Most appearances: all-time – Luís Figo (127); current – Cristiano Ronaldo (90)
Association formed: 1914
Nickname: Selecção das Quinas (Team of Shields)
Since reaching the UEFA EURO 2004 finals, Portugal have become fixtures in the knockout stages of major tournaments. Semi-finalists at the 2006 FIFA World Cup and quarter-finalists at UEFA EURO 2008, they were unlucky to encounter eventual winners Spain in the last 16 in South Africa two summers ago. A fifth successive UEFA European Championship final tournament was in jeopardy when Paulo Bento replaced Carlos Queiroz two games – and just one point – into UEFA EURO 2012 qualifying. He made an immediate impact, culminating in a resounding play-off triumph against Bosnia and Herzegovina.
UEFA EURO 2012 qualifying
Group H: runners-up
Play-offs: Bosnia and Herzegovina 0-0, 2-6 Portugal (2-6 agg)
Leading scorer: Cristiano Ronaldo (7)
Ever-presents: Raul Meireles, Nani (10)
Bento oversaw five wins but defeat in Denmark left them second in Group H. They beat Bosnia and Herzegovina 6-2 – the biggest winning margin in the play-offs – despite a goalless opener in Zenica. Cristiano Ronaldo took his international tally to 32 goals with two in the second leg, going level with Luís Figo in third place on Portugal's top scorer list. Only Pauleta (47) and Eusébio (41) lie ahead.
Ronaldo, at 26, became Portugal's fifth most-capped player during qualifying, rising to fourth in subsequent friendlies. "Credit goes to the team – all the players – who had the ability to adapt to a new philosophy and new ideas," Bento said after Portugal confirmed their place in Poland and Ukraine.
Portugal made their UEFA European Championship final tournament debut in 1984, and came within six minutes of the Paris showpiece. Leading hosts France 2-1 deep into extra time, Jean-François Domergue levelled before Michel Platini clipped in a 119th-minute winner.
The Selecção next qualified for the tournament in 1996 and are one of seven nations to take part then and reach every finals since, along with Spain, Germany, Italy, France, the Netherlands and the Czech Republic.
Portugal have contested five final tournaments and have never failed to advance beyond the group stage, losing semi-finals to eventual winners France in 1984 and 2000. They went one better on home soil at UEFA EURO 2004 before losing 1-0 to Greece, 100-1 outsiders at the start of the tournament, in Lisbon.
UEFA EURO 2012 Group B fixtures
Saturday 9 June: Germany v Portugal, 20.45CET, Lviv
Wednesday 13 June: Denmark v Portugal, 18.00CET, Lviv
Sunday 17 June: Portugal v Netherlands, 20.45CET, Kharkiv
Team EURO records
Overall: P122 W66 D28 L28 F217 A118
Final tournament: P24 W12 D4 L8 F34 A23
Qualifying: P98 W54 D24 L20 F183 A95
Click here for extensive list of records
Last updated 19 December 2011
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