Uruguay national football team





Uruguayan Football Association


Diego Godín


Óscar Tabárez


Diego Godin


Luis Suárez (63 goals)


Luis Suarez, Diego Godin


La Celeste (The Sky Blue)





Appearances: 13

Best Result: Champions (1930, 1950)


Appearances: 44

Best Result: Champions (1916, 1917, 1920, 1923, 1924, 1926, 1935, 1942, 1956, 1959, 1967, 1983, 1987, 1995, 2011)



The Uruguay national football team represents Uruguay in international football and is controlled by the Uruguayan Football Association, the governing body for football in Uruguay.

The Uruguayan team is commonly referred to as La Celeste (The Sky Blue).

They have won the Copa América 15 times, the most successful national team in the tournament, the most recent title being the 2011 edition.

The team has won the FIFA World Cup twice, including the first World Cup in 1930 as hosts, defeating Argentina 4–2 in the final. They won their second title in 1950, upsetting host Brazil 2–1 in the final match, which received an attendance higher than any football match ever.

They have won gold medals at the Olympic football tournament twice, in 1924 and 1928, which are regarded as equivalent to World Cups. The world federation indeed considers Uruguay 4 times FIFA world champion.

La Celeste also won the 1980 Mundialito, a tournament among former World Cup champions. In total, Uruguay have won 20 official titles, a world record for the most international titles held by any country.

Their success is amplified by the fact that the nation has a very small population. Uruguay is by far the smallest country in the world to have won a World Cup in terms of population, 1.75 million inhabitants in 1930.

The second-smallest country, by population, to have won the World Cup is Argentina with a population of nearly 28 million people in 1978. Uruguay is also the smallest country ever to win any World Cup medals.

Only six FIFA member nations with a currently smaller population than Uruguay’s have ever qualified to any World Cup – Northern Ireland (three times), Slovenia (twice), Wales, Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago and Iceland.

Football in Uruguay

Football in Uruguay stands as the most popular sport.

The Uruguay national football team has won two FIFA World Cup titles in addition to a record 15 Copa América titles, making them one of the most successful teams in South America. The national team won the first edition of the tournament in 1930, and won it again in 1950.

Also, the Uruguayan national football team won the football Olympic Games twice, in 1924 and 1928 as well as the Copa de Oro de Campeones Mundiales (“Mundialito”) in 1980–1981.

Club football

Nacional is a result of the fusion between Montevideo Football Club and Uruguay Athletic Club, 14 May 1899.

It was decided there that the club’s flag Club football in Uruguay is dominated by two big Montevideo clubs, Peñarol and Nacional, which compete in the AUF Championships (Primera División).

Peñarol won the tournament in 50 times (including titles by its predecessor, CURRC) and Nacional 45 times, since it began in 1900.

Other teams winning the league were Danubio (4 times), Defensor Sporting (4 times), River Plate F.C. (4 times), Montevideo Wanderers (3 times), Rampla Juniors (1 time), Bella Vista (1 time), Progreso (1 time), Central Español (1 time).

Also, during 1923 and 1924, existed other Uruguayan football league, the FUF (Uruguayan Football Federation). Only had two tournaments, obtained by Atlético Wanderers and Peñarol (was expulsed from AUF in 1922 and reincorporated in 1926, during the Torneo del Consejo Provisorio, won by Peñarol).

Nacional and Peñarol have each won three times the Intercontinental Cup also been successful in South American competition, with Nacional having won the Copa Interamericana twice, the Recopa Sudamericana one time and Copa Libertadores three times, and Peñarol having conquered Copa Libertadores five times.

In 2011 Peñarol reached the finals and fell against Brazilian side Santos.

Matches between Peñarol and Nacional are termed the Uruguayan Clásico, the longest-running football derby outside Great Britain.

Most other clubs in the top division are also from Montevideo. In the 2015–16 Uruguayan Primera División season, only two clubs, Plaza Colonia and Juventud de Las Piedras, came from outside the capital.

Colonia and Canelones are the only departments that are represented in Uruguay’s First Division.

Many Uruguayan footballers have been successful in European football, including current players Luis Suárez, Edinson Cavani and Diego Forlán. F

orlán has had a successful career in Spain with Atlético Madrid, where he won both the European Golden Shoe and Pichichi Trophy twice.

Suárez has had a successful career in England (with Liverpool) and Spain (with Barcelona), where he won the European Golden Shoe twice and the Pichichi Trophy.

Uruguayan football league system

The Uruguayan football league system is a series of interconnected football leagues for clubs in Uruguay and is organized by the Uruguayan Football Association at the national level.

The Uruguayan League is organized by the Uruguayan Football Association, both in male and female football.

The First Championship of the Uruguayan Primera Division was played in 1900.

Since that tournament until 2017, 114 championships of the Uruguayan League were played (from 1900 to 1931 all were played in an amateur way, and from 1932 professionally).

Additionally, there are championships in Uruguay that are organized by other associations, of an amateur character.

League System

The system uses a system of promotion and relegation between the leagues at all levels which means that even the smallest club can reach the top level, the Primera División.

The Uruguayan League has distributed teams in three categories.

Division 1 – Uruguayan Primera División


The Uruguayan Primera División, called Torneo Uruguayo Copa Coca-Cola for publicity, is regarded as the 23rd most difficult football league in the 21st century by the International Federation of Football History & Statistics.

This division features 16 of the best Uruguayan football clubs.

Division 2 – Uruguayan Segunda División


Segunda División Profesional is the second division of professional football in Uruguay, established in 1942.

The league is sometimes referred to as Primera B. Segunda División was first held in 1942 to replace amateur Divisional Intermedia, establishing a professional league for lower divisions in Uruguay.

The most successful clubs are Fénix and Sud América.

This division features 12 clubs.

Division 3 – Uruguayan Segunda División Amateur

Segunda División Amateur was the third division of the Asociación Uruguaya de Fútbol league system.

The league was sometimes referred to as Segunda Amateur.

This division features 18 clubs.