Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Uruguay - Soccer Players Abroad

I've always found it amazing that Uruguay has had so much success on an international level. The small nation has won 2 World Cups and 14 Copa America titles and they send a large amount of players to top leagues all over the world. I know much of their success was in the first half of the 20th century and they've struggled in tournament play since winning the Copa America in 1995, but they still have a lot of impressive players currently playing abroad.

Here's a few comparisons to get an idea of just how small Uruguay is:

Uruguay Population: 3,460,607 Size: 68,037 sq mi
Oklahoma Population: 3,579,212 Size: 69,898 sq mi

Uruguay Population: 3,460,607
USA Population: 303,720,924

Diego Forlan, currently with Atletico Madrid, plays in a city with nearly the same population as his entire home nation. Madrid Population: 3,228,359

Uruguay is the only country in the world to win a World Cup with a population of under 4 million inhabitants. The next lowest world cup winning population is Argentina, with a population of about 41 million people.

I've also wondered, with the recent influx of South American talent to MLS, where are the Uruguayans? There are currently zero in the league and only one playing in USL-1. Maybe players from Uruguay don't want to play in English speaking countries, there are zero in the English Premier League too.

Below is a full list of the 81 Uruguayans currently playing in Spain, Italy, France, Holland, Portugal, Germany, Mexico, Argentina, and Brazil.

La Liga:
Diego Forlan - Atletico Madrid
Javier Chevantón - Sevilla
Sebastián Taborda - Deportivo la Coruna
Gustavo Munúa - Deportivo la Coruna
Carlos Diogo - Real Zaragoza
Fabián Carini - Real Murcia
Mario Regueiro - Real Murcia
Pablo García - Real Murcia
Iván Alonso - Real Murcia
Gonzalo Castro - Mallorca
Sebastián Viera - Villarreal
Diego Godín - Villarreal
Sebastián Eguren - Villarreal
Sergio Orteman - Racing Santander
Martín Cáceres - Recreativo Huelva
Walter Pandiani - CA Osasuna
Juan Albín - Getafe

Serie A:
Diego López - Cagliari
Sebastián Rosano - Cagliari
Jorge Andrés Martínez - Catania
Guillermo Giacomazzi - Empoli
Matías Masiero - Genoa
Fernando Muslera - Lazio
Mariano Bogliacino - Napoli
Walter Gargano - Napoli
Marcelo Zalayeta - Napoli
Edison Cavani - Palermo
Christian Stuani - Reggina
Carlos Adrián Valdez - Reggina
Pablo Álvarez - Reggina
Leonardo Martín Migliónico - Sampdoria
Álvaro Recoba - Torino

Ligue 1
Diego Pérez - AS Monaco
Ignacio María González - AS Monaco
Damián Macaluso - AS Nancy
Gaston Curbelo - AS Nancy
Adrian Sarkissian - AS Nancy
Gonzalo Vargas - FC Sochaux
Williams Martínez - Valenciennes FC

Bruno Silva - Ajax
Luis Suárez - Ajax

Portuguese Liga
Luis Aguiar - Academica
Maximiliano Pereira - Benfica
Cristian Rodríguez - Benfica
Marcelo Lipatin - CD Nacional
Jorge Fucile - Porto

German Bundesliga
Pablo Cáceres - MSV Duisburg
Gustavo Varela - Schalke 04
Carlos Grossmüller - Schalke 04
Vicente Sánchez - Schalke 04

Primera División de México
Richard Núñez - Club America
Hernán Rodrigo López - Club America
Jorge Bava - Atlas
Nicolás Vigneri - Cruz Azul
Egidio Arévalo - Monterrey
Gonzalo Choy González - Morelia
Héctor Giménez - Necaxa
Álvaro Fabián González - Puebla FC
Nicolás Olivera - Puebla FC
Marcelo Guerrero - San Luis
Marcelo Sosa - UAG Tecos

Primera División de Argentina
Álvaro Pereira - Argentions Juniors
Andrés Scotti - Argentions Juniors
Martín Rodríguez - Banfield
Álvaro González - Boca Juniors
Juan Manuel Salgueiro - Estudiantes
Juan Manuel Díaz - Estudiantes
Sergio Leal - Gimnasia La Plata
Diego Alonso - Gimnasia La Plata
Guillermo Rodríguez - Independiente
Claudio Flores - Lanus
Diego Scotti - Newells Old Boys
Ignacio Ithurralde - Olimpo
Josemir Lujambio - Olimpo
Sebastián Abreu - River Plate
Federico Martínez - Rosario Central
Pablo Lima - Velez Sarsfield
Santiago Silva - Velez Sarsfield

Campeonato Brasileiro Série A
Agustín Viana - Atletico Mineiro
Gonzalo Sorondo - Internacional
Juan Castillo - Botafogo


  1. Thank you for providing this list. That is an extraordinary amount of talent from such a small nation. There is a saying in South America which goes something like this, "Other countries have their history, Uruguay has it's futbol!" Despite Uruguay not winning any titles since the 1995 Copa America they are tied with Argentina for most Copa America championships and since 1995 Uruguay has often made at least the semifinals of Copa America so even if they aren't winning titles they are at least contending for them.

    By the way the player Castillo you listed with Botafogo in Brazil is goalkeeper Juan Castillo.

    Nice blog, keep up the good work.

  2. Aye, and thats not to mention 6 World Club Championships and 8 Copa Libertadores wins.

    The place has a ridiculous footballing pedigree, perhaps as you say, because they have little else lol.

    European clubs love Uruguayans because of their work ethic, professionalism and aggression. The glory days may be a while back but with this amount of players playing in the top leagues year after year it is only a matter of time until they come up with a world class team again.

    They had an outside shot at 2002 world cup if their entire midfield had not gotten injured like a week before it began.

    Proportionally, its the strongest football nation on earth by a country mile, and always has been.

  3. http://www.LaCelesteBlog.com/

    You won't find a better blog regarding "LA CELESTE".

    Visita el mejor portal en inglés dedicado enteramente a la Selección Uruguaya.


  4. By far the best soocer history of the world. They hold the record of 20 international cup.

  5. Suarez, Cavani, Forlan are top 50 players in the world. Suarez espacailly he is probally top ten