Ecuador national football team

Ecuador
Shirt badge/Association crest
Nickname(s) La Tricolor (the Tricolor)
La Tri
Los Amarillos
(the Yellows)
Association Federación Ecuatoriana de Fútbol (FEF)
Confederation CONMEBOL (South America)
Head coach Jorge Celico (interim)
Captain Antonio Valencia
Most caps Iván Hurtado (168)
Top scorer Agustin Delgado (31)
Home stadium Estadio Olímpico Atahualpa
FIFA code ECU
First colours
Second colours
FIFA ranking
Current 60 Decrease 25 (16 October 2017)
Highest 10 (July 2012)
Lowest 63 (May 1998)
Elo ranking
Current 29 (15 November 2017)
Highest 11 (27 March 2013)
Lowest 111 (December 1959)
First international
  Bolivia 1–2 Ecuador Ecuador
( Bogotá, Colombia; August 8, 1938)
Biggest win
Ecuador Ecuador 6–1 Venezuela 
( Quito, Ecuador; June 15, 1993)
Biggest defeat
Argentina  12–0 Ecuador Ecuador
( Montevideo, Uruguay; January 22, 1942)
World Cup
Appearances 3 (first in 2002)
Best result Round of 16, 2006
Copa América
Appearances 27 (first in 1939)
Best result Fourth place, 1959 and 1993
CONCACAF Gold Cup
Appearances 1 (first in 2002)
Best result Group stage, 2002

The Ecuador national football team (Selección de fútbol de Ecuador) represents Ecuador in international football competitions and is controlled by the Ecuadorian Football Federation (Federación Ecuatoriana de Fútbol). They play official home matches at Estadio Olímpico Atahualpa in Quito.

Ecuador has qualified for three FIFA World Cups in 2002, 2006 and 2014. Their best performance came in 2006 when they advanced to the Round of 16, eventually eliminated by England. They are one of two countries in South America not to have won the Copa América, the other being Venezuela. Their best performance in the continental tournament was fourth in 1959 and 1993, both times on home soil.

History

From a historical viewpoint, Ecuador have been one of the more struggling footballing nations in South America. Despite their past irregularities, however, Ecuador has risen to be a serious South American competitor in recent years.

Discarding an invitation to participate in the inaugural 1930 FIFA World Cup held in Uruguay, their first participation in a World Cup qualifying campaign was in the 1962 campaign, eventually being well beaten by Argentina over two games. However, the 1966 qualifying campaign pitted the side, regarded as one of the finest teams Ecuador has ever produced, against 1962 hosts and third-place finishers Chile and a weakened Colombia side. Ecuador, featuring stars such as Washington Muñoz, Alberto Spencer, Carlos Alberto Raffo, Enrique Raymondi and Jorge Bolaños, forced a play-off in Peru before being eliminated by Chile. Other talented players to have represented Ecuador include José Villafuerte in the 1970s and 1980s.

The 1998 World Cup qualifiers saw the format for qualifying in CONMEBOL changed to a league home-and-away system. This difference made a huge impact on Ecuador's performance as they clinched several important home wins during the campaign. At the end, they achieved a very respectable 6th-place finish, just under Peru and Chile (which qualified by goal differential). The campaign also marked the emergence of several players, such as Agustín Delgado, Álex Aguinaga, Iván Hurtado, Ulises de la Cruz and Iván Kaviedes, who would set the stage for Ecuador's achievements in the next decade.

This remained the closest they had come to appearing in a finals until the qualification tournament for the 2002 FIFA World Cup in South Korea and Japan. Led by Colombian born manager Hernán Darío Gómez, they finished second to Argentina, and one point ahead of Brazil who went on to win the World Cup. Agustín Delgado, with 9 goals, finished joint top scorer in qualifying with Hernán Crespo of Argentina. They were drawn into Group G with Italy, Mexico and Croatia. Although they were knocked out at the group stage, they achieved a 1–0 victory over Croatia, who had come third at the previous edition of the World Cup.

A disappointing showing at the 2004 Copa América in Peru led to the resignation of Gómez, who was replaced by another Colombian, Luis Fernando Suárez. He led them successfully through the latter stages of the qualification process for the 2006 FIFA World Cup, finishing third to make the finals. In Germany, they were drawn into Group A with the hosts, Poland, and Costa Rica. Wins over Poland and Costa Rica earned La Tri qualification to the knockout stages for the first time.

Another disappointing showing at yet another Copa América in 2007 and three successive defeats in the beginning of the 2010 World Cup qualifying campaign led to the end of Suarez's time in the national team. He was replaced in 2008 for Sixto Vizuete, who had previously gained recognition for winning the 2007 Pan American Games with the U-18s. Vizuete became one of the few Ecuadorians to coach the U-23 national team, and senior team, but Ecuador finished the qualifying campaign for the 2010 FIFA World Cup in 6th place, being eliminated from the finals for the first time since 1998. They managed to turn it around in the 2014 World Cup qualifying campaign where they finished in the top 4, enough to record a third World Cup appearance. On Friday, December 6, 2013 they were drawn into a balanced group compromising of top seeds, Switzerland, former champions France, and minnows Honduras.

Other Languages
беларуская (тарашкевіца)‎: Зборная Эквадору па футболе