Portugal’s FIFA World Ranking in 2018: 4th
Portugal national football (soccer) team at World Cup 2018
Racial stock of the Portugal-2018 World Cup team:
— 77% European ancestry [17.7/23.0],
—– of which thirteen players (56.5%) are fully White-European;
— 20% Subsaharan African ancestry [4.7/23.0]
— 3% Miscellaneous ancestry including Amerindian and Gypsy [0.6/23.0]
For an in-depth, player-by-player racial-ancestry analysis, see below. For an analysis of the political significance of the racial-cultural dynamics seen in Portugal’s 2018 World Cup team, see here (below).
Race and Europe’s ‘National’ Teams, World Cup 2018
Introduction to Series of World Cup Posts
This year’s World Cup (June-July 2018), as a politicized sporting event, gives us the opportunity to reflect on the racial situation in Europe as it stands, as it has evolved over the past twenty years (using World Cup teams as fixed comparison points). The trajectory of changes in the racial stock of teams may point to wider racial prospects for the 2020s, 2030s, and beyond.
Rarely discussed in its own terms, but on millions (perhaps billions) of minds, is the fact that Western Europe’s World Cup squads of recent years have not been very European but are largely multi-racial teams, sometimes White-minority teams, and thus symbolically in line with Europe’s shakily reigning “Multicultacracy” ideology.
The goal of these posts is to quantify this year’s Western European national teams’ racial-ancestral(-cultural) origins in some depth. Which European teams are the ‘least’ and which are the ‘most’ European?
Are there political implications to the racial balance of World Cup national teams? I would propose that there are, as follows:
Some countries, notably France, have received criticism for being top-heavy with non-European ‘mercenary’ players, men of recognized individual talent but with oftentimes less-than-solid ties to, and often being resentful of, the country they are representing. Will such racial ‘mercenary’ teams overperform in 2018, as they would presumably be expected to if team play is a summation of individual talents, or underperform, perhaps due to a relative lack of national-patriotic feeling?
Europe’s World Cup 2018 teams analyzed so far:
— Belgium: 70% White, 22% Black, 17% Muslim
— Croatia: 100% White, no Muslims
— Denmark: 90% White/Scandinavian
— England: 63% White, No Muslims
— France: 33% White, African Majority
— Germany: 83% White, 11% Muslim
— Iceland: 100% White, 98% Icelandic
— Poland: 100% White, disproportionately from western Poland
— Portugal: 77% White, heavy African-colonial presence (This Post)
— Russia: 84% White with the remainder from the Caucuses and Central Asian/Turkic
— Serbia: 94% White, 4% Muslim, 4% Gypsy[?]
— Spain: 92% White
— Switzerland: 70% White, but only 44% White-Christian
— Sweden: 91% White, No Muslims
Player-by-Player Racial-Ancestral-Cultural Origins
(Method of classification: The twenty-three men on the PORTUGAL World Cup 2018 squad are individually evaluated by race, national-ancestral origin, birthplace, and place raised until adolescence, where such data is available. Players of half-White mixed race receive a 0.5 ‘White;’ two half-White players are thus together counted as 1.0 Whites.)
(Any corrections or additional information is welcome in the comments.)
Player years of birth range from 1981 to 1997.
GOALKEEPERS [Whites at 3.0/3.0]
— Rui Patrício (White; born in Leiria, Portugal; of Dinaric racial type; see picture)
— Anthony Lopes (White; born in Givors, France, to Portuguese parents)
— Beto [legal name António Alberto Bastos Pimparel] (White; born in Lisbon; like starting goalkeeper Rui Patricio, Beto is of Dinarid racial type with Mediterranean influence; see picture)
Aside: The Racial Stock of Cape Verde
Several Portugal national team players have origins in Cape Verde. What is Cape Verde? It is an archipelago of islands 600-900km off the coast of West Africa, and a five-centuries-long Portuguese colonial project. In fact, uninhabited when the Portuguese began to settle the islands from the 1460s AD, Cape Verde boomed during he lucrative transatlantic slave trade that began to emerge in the 1500s. Independence came in 1975 after the Portuguese coup of 1974 set in motion the process by which all Portugal’s colonies were released; from the 1970s, Cape Verdean migration to Portugal has been substantial; Wiki’s Cape Verdeans page says up to 200,000 of them may now live in Portgual, vs. 500,000 in Cape Verde itself. Culturally, Cape Verde is almost entirely Catholic and has no Islamic presence at all.
Cape Verde was unusual among Portugal’s possessions in ‘Africa’ (it is not actually in, or directly adjacent to, Africa but rather in the Atlantic), in that native Cape Verdeans’ genetic ancestry is substantially White-European. Genetic analyses show that a Cape Verdrean will range from 41% to 73% Subsaharan African [the middle 95%, i.e. +/2 SD] (this figure from “The Admixture Structure and Genetic Variation of the Archipelago of Cape Verde” here). Therefore the ‘Blacker’ end of the Cape Verdean population is, in terms of racial stock, about the same as Afro-Americans (who are 73-24 Black-White, according to one recent genetic study, “The Genetic Ancestry of African Americans, Latinos, and European Americans across the United States”).
Portugal national team players in 2018 with known full- or partial-Cape Verdean origin are: Ricardo Pereira, Manuel Fernandes, Gelson Martins, and Cristiano Ronaldo (1/16th, and the racial origin of this Cape Verde ancestor is unknown and could be full-White, see Ronaldo entry below), as well as several players from previous Portugal World Cup teams.
DEFENDERS [White ancestry at 6.35/8.0] [Black ancestry at 1.45/8.0] [Amerindian ancestry at 0.2/8.0]
— Bruno Alves (Mixed race; born in northern Portugal; father from Brazil with substantial Subsaharan ancestry, mother presumed to be a Portuguese of White-European origin; Bruno Alves’ father was a professional footballer who went by the nickname ‘Washington’ (full name: Washington Geraldo Dias Alves), born 1949 in southeast Brazil [see picture of Bruno Alves with his father]; ‘Washington’ clearly has Subsaharan ancestry, and according to a genetic study [see Table 2 here], people who identify as Black in Washington’s home region of Brazil are actually 50% Subsaharan [43-56% at two standard deviations], 43% European, and 8% Amerindian; unless ‘Washington’ is an outlier, he is within this range, making Bruno Alves around 25% Subsaharan, which fits with Bruno’s phenotype [see picture here, in which he also seems to display the Amerindian ancestry also present at a baseline level in Brazilian Blacks) (will classify Bruno Alves as 0.25 Black, 0.65 White, 0.1 Amerindian)
— Pepe [Kepler Laveran de Lima Ferreira] (mixed race; born in Maceió, northeast Brazil; emigrated to Portugal at age eighteen in 2001 and played on Portugal clubs through 2007, by which time had received Portuguese citizenship [requirements: six year minimum residence, language, and demonstrated ties to Portugal]; shortly after receiving Portuguese citizenship, was appointed to Portugal national team and [ironically] left Portugal the same year to play for Real Madrid, where he played 2007-2017; racially — see picture of Pepe — he is probably in line with the ‘Brown’ average for Northeast Brazil of 60% European, 31% Subsaharan, 9% Amerindian [see Table 2 here, “The Genomic Ancestry of Individuals from Different Geographical Regions of Brazil Is More Uniform Than Expected”]) (=0.6 White, 0.3 Black, 0.1 Amerindian)
— Raphaël Guerreiro (Mainly White; born in Paris suburb Seine-Saint-Denis to a Portuguese father and a French mother; “His Portugal under-21 manager, Rui Jorge, remembered him as a very introverted character, in part due to his language difficulties [in Portuguese]” [wiki]; I find no photos of Guerreiro’s parents online, but there are hints of possible Subsaharan ancestry on his face [see picture (Guerreiro in red, with France’s Griezmann, on whom see France entry); and see here for a full profile shot of Guerreiro] –the possibility of partial non-European origin is also suggested by his nativity in the largely de-Europeanized Seine-Saint-Denis area of Greater Paris) (conservatively estimate Guerreiro at 0.85 White, 0.15 Subsaharan, implying that one of his parents, perhaps the French-citizen mother, may have part-Black, perhaps of colonial origin)
— José Fonte (White; born in northern Portugal to a professional footballer father; in terms of physical anthropology, his racial-type is Atlanto-Mediterranean [see Dr. Carlton Coon’s entry on this type], and José Fonte could fit in Britain, where such types are also present in some numbers, as in this picture of Fonte) (=1.0 White)
— Rúben Dias (White; born in Greater Lisbon, Portugal, in April 1997, the youngest player on Portugal’s national team this year; see picture) (=1.0 White)
— Ricardo Pereira (Black; born in Lisbon of Cape Verdean descent, and played for Portuguese clubs through 2018, when he was traded to Leicester City; see picture; his apparent non-full-Black phenotype reflects Cape Verde’s racial balance [on which, see “The Racial Stock of Cape Verde” above], i.e., mainly Black-Subsaharan but with substantial White admixture, i.e. natives of Cape Verde are “mulattoes”) (will count as =0.75 Black, 0.25 White)
— Mário Rui (White; born in southern Portugal and of primarily Alpine racial-type; see picture) (=1.0 White)
— Cédric (White; “Born in Singen, Baden-Württemberg, Germany to Portuguese immigrants [in 1991], Cédric returned to his parents’ country at the age of two” [wiki]; played on Portuguese clubs until moving to an English club, Southampton, in 2015; see picture; his racial-anthropological type is primarily either Atlanto-Mediterranean or Mediterranid proper with such substantial Cro-Magnid influence [see also picture here] that he could fit in northern Europe, and/or that if he had a child with a Northern European woman, tat child would be effectively indistinguishable from a native of Northern Europe who has eight local great-grandparents, as in the case of half-Spanish, half-German actor Daniel Bruhl; this aside is notable to stress the racial continuities across Europe) (=1.0 White)
MIDFIELDERS [White ancestry at 4.5/7.0] [Black ancestry at 2.5/7.0]
— Manuel Fernandes (Black; born in Lisbon but of Cape Verdean origin — see “The Racial Stock of Cape Verde” above; cousin is Swiss national team player and fellow full-SubsaharanAfrican Gelson Fernandes [see Swiss national team entry]; Manuel Fernandes — see picture — would fit quite well in an Afro-American context, unsurprising given his likely Central/West-African-White racial balance being so close to the Afro-American average) (=0.75 Black, 0.25 White)
— João Moutinho (White; born and raised on the south coast of Portugal and of gracile Mediterranean racial type; could pass in many regions of Europe except for height: 170cm [5ft 7in], characteristic of the Meditteranid racial-stock; see picture) (=1.0 White)
— João Mário (at least half Black; born in Porto, Portugal’s second largest city; of Angolan origin; see picture of João Mário; skin-tone lighter than the presumable Angolan average, so some White ancestry a possibility; his skin tone is comparable to Miss Angola Micaela Reis‘s, who is of half-White origin) (estimate at 0.75 Black, 0.25 White based on phenotype)
— Bernardo Silva (White; attended an elite, English-language Lisbon school from early childhood; probably of Berid type displaying both Meditteranid and dinaricized Cro-Magnid traits; see picture) (=1.0 White)
— William Carvalho (Black; born in Luanda, Angola in 1992 to parents originating in the interior of Angola in the province of Luena [Luso]; emigrated to Portugal circa 1995; unlike fellow Angolan-origin midfielder Joao Mario [see above], William Carvalho appears full-Black; see picture) (=1.0 Black)
— Bruno Fernandes (White; born in Greater Porto, Portugal; by racial-type a dinaricized Mediterranid, perhaps in the proposed “Litorid” type; see picture) (=1.0 White)
— Adrien Silva [full name: Adrien Sébastien Perruchet da Silva] (White; born in Angoulême, Poitou-Charentes, France, to a Portuguese father and a French mother; see picture; racially a strong Nordid element is visible, as well as possible Cro-Magnid, possibly making him classifiable as North-Atlantid, making him well within the typical range for Northwest Europe in racial terms) (=1.0 White)
FORWARDS [White ancestry at /4.0]
— Cristiano Ronaldo [Captain] (White; born and raised on the island of Madeira, an island in the Atlantic settled by Portuguese from 1425 AD; Madeira, since the 1970s, has very consistently voted center-right conservative, which may partly explain why Ronaldo was so-named, upon birth in early 1985, after President Ronald Reagan [according to his father] [Ronaldo’s full legal name is “Cristiano Ronaldo dos Santos Aveiro”]; has one great-grandmother from Cape Verde (see “The Racial Stock of Cape Verde” above), making Ronaldo himself potentially 2-3% Subsaharan through this recent ancestor — the location of an ancestor’s birth can only suggest possibilities, though, and Cape Verde did have some degree of full-Whites, 2% according to the 1950 census; Ronaldo’s phenotype is southern Alpinid-Mediterranid; see picture of Ronaldo with parents) (=1.0 White)
— André Silva (White; born and raised in northern Portugal near Porto; Berid racial type; see pictures here and for a profile shot here; I think still well within European range despite some pictures in some lighting seeming to show what may be Subsaharan ancestry) (=1.0 White)
— Gonçalo Guedes (White, but of a distinctly peripheral European type: a strong Berid/Berberid with potential Orientalid influence; see picture; born in Benavente, central Portugal with no known recent actual non-European roots) (will classify as 0.85 White, 0.15 Other)
— Gelson Martins (Black; of Cape Verde origin — see “The Racial Stock of Cape Verde” above; born in Cape Verde in 1995, moved to Portugal in 2008 to begin youth football career; some pictures of Gelson Martins [as here] show a diluted Black phenotype, again in line with the skin-tone of many Afro-Americans) (=0.75 Black, 0.25 White)
— Ricardo Quaresma (half-White, half-Gypsy; “Quaresma is of partial Romani descent, earning him the nickname ‘O Cigano’ (‘The Gypsy’)” [Wiki]; any picture reveals Quaresma’s definite non-European ancestry, which is through his mother [picture of Quaresma with half-Gypsy mother here]; resembles a Latin American mestizo gang-member but this is partly through his own fashion choices and tattoos, which, when toned down, allows his actual majority [European] ancestry to come through, which is Dinarid and Mediterranean) (=0.75 White, 0.25 Gypsy)
Comparison with past PORTUGAL squads
Portugal-2014 players were born between 1981 and 1993.
Racial-Ancestral Stock: Seventeen full- (or near-full-)White players (74%). The six Nonwhite players included: Bruno Alves (#2 in team portrait; mixed-race South American, also on 2018 roster, see entry above); Pepe (#3; Brazil, also on 2010 and 2018 rosters, classified in this post as 60% White, 30% Black, 10% Amerindian); André Almeida (#19; looks likely to have partial North African or even some Subsaharan ancestry); William Carvalho (not in above photo, replaced #6; full Black from Angola); Nani (#17 [number covered, middle row third from right] of Cape Verdean descent, probably over half Black); Silvestre Varela (#18; Black); Eder (not pictured, replaced #11; Black from Guinea-Bissau). In overall ancestral stock, the team was certainly comfortably over 80% White-European.
Portugal Record in 2014 World Cup
3: Games (finished at 18th place)
4: Goals For
7: Goals Against
-1.0: Goal Differential per Game Played
Portugal-2010 players were born between 1977 and 1988.
Racial-Ancestral Stock: Apparently eighteen full- (or near full-)European players, or 78% of the team. Five Nonwhite players including Bruno Alves (mixed-race South American); Rolando (Cape Verde, Black); Miguel Monteiro (Black, Cape Verde ancestry); Pepe (Brazil, classified in this post as 60% White, 30% Black, 10% Amerindian); Liédson [#9] (Brazilian, mainly Black). A total White ancestral share for the team is probably just under 85% White-European, depending on the exact White shares-of-ancestry of the Brazilian and Cape Verdean players.
Portugal Record in 2010 World Cup
4: Games (finished at 11th place)
7: Goals For
1: Goals Against
+1.50: Goal Differential per Game Played (second place in goal-difference/game, just behind Germany [+1.57])
Portugal-2006 players were born between 1972 and 1985. (Note that Cristiano Ronaldo [leaning with hands on knees in photo] was Portugal’s youngest player in 2006; 2018 makes his fourth consecutive World Cup appearance)
Racial-Ancestral Stock: Nineteen of the twenty-three are full- (or near-full-)White-European players (83%); full team around 85%+ White by total ancestral stock.
Portugal Record in 2006 World Cup
7: Games (finished at 4th place)
7: Goals For
5: Goals Against
+0.3: Goal Differential per Game Played
Portugal-2002 players were born between 1969 to 1983.
Racial-Ancestral Stock: The full team had twenty White players (87%), but was up to 92% White-European by total ancestral stock, with circa 8% Black by ancestry [1.25/23.0]. There were three Nonwhite players, one of which (Nuno Rechaut) is clearly of mixed race unknown African origin, one (Jorge Andrade) of Cape Verdean origin and so likely 75-25 Black-White, and the third born in Mozambique and probable mulatto origin.
The last is Abel Xavier, whose biography in racial-cultural terms is worth briefly mentioning: “Xavier was born in Mozambique [in 1972], which was then a Portuguese colony, and moved to Portugal as a child [after Marxist takeover/independence in 1975]. On retiring from his playing career, Xavier converted to Islam and changed his first name to Faisal” — this is notable for being the only player known to have a Muslim connection on any of the 2002, 2006, 2010, 2014, or 2018 Portugal rosters. (Note that Mozambique itself is 18-20% Muslim according to Wiki.)
Portugal Record in 2002 World Cup
3: Games (finished at 21st place)
6: Goals For
4: Goals Against
+0.7: Goal Differential per Game Played
Despite being eliminated at the group stage, Portugal ranked fifth in goal difference per game. The top teams in goal differential were:
— (1) Brazil: +2.0 goals per game [finished at first place]
— (2) Germany: +1.6 goals per game [finished at second place]
— (3) Spain: +1.0 goals per game [finished at fifth place]
— (4) Ireland: +0.75 goals per game [finished at twelfth place]
— (5) Portugal: +0.66 goals per game [finished at twenty-first place]
— (6) England: +0.60 goals per game [finished at sixth place]
— (7) Turkey: +0.57 goals per game [finished at third place]
— (26) France: -1.0 goals per game [finished at twenty-eighth place]
— (32) Saudi Arabia: -4.0 goals per game [finished at thirty-second place]
Portugal consistently performs at the World Cup above what its relatively small population size (10 million) would suggest. Like other Western European teams, since 2002 its teams have been slowly but steadily de-Europeanizing, as follows:
2002: 87% of team members full-White; ancestral stock 90%+ White
2006: 83% of team members full-White; ancestral stock 85%+ White
2010: 78% of team members full-White; ancestral stock up to 85% White
2014: 74% of team members full-White; ancestral stock over 80% White
2018: 57% of team members full-White; ancestral stock calculated at 77% White
Can this go on forever, and reach a point that all ‘European’ teams look like African teams with a few Whites awkwardly tossed into the mix? Or is a tipping point coming? What would that even mean?
The World Cup coming once every four years only allows for a reflection not just on racial changes bt on generational ones. Jumping ahead just a little, the men who will play in World Cups 2034 and 2038 will be born mainly in the 2000s and 2010s, the youngest player in 2018 is probably an infant as of this writing (June 2018); at the rate the Portugal national team is de-Europeanizing, Portugal’s share of full-White-European players will likely be under half, and the total White ancestral stock may even push towards 50%.
The political implications of this are uncertain; the player-age-cohort for these 2030s World Cups may never know an all-White world such like the one just visible beyond the analysis “horizon” of this series of posts (2002 to 2018), but they may dream of one. The state and wider international system (think EU), if it keeps pushing de-Europeanization, will presumably lose some legitimacy, and to turn the metaphor back onto the World Cup, support for the team may be undermined if it begins to look like France’s Black-majority ‘national’ teams.
Portgual’s ‘domestic’ racial situation, at least as reflected in this detailed profile of the twenty-three of World Cup 2018, is very clearly closely tied to its colonial history, for which it has long been criticized by racialists. With only thirteen players of fully-European racial origin (57%), Portugal is one of the least-White teams in Europe measured by this metric, though still well ahead of poor France which fields only six Whites (26%) on its twenty-three man roster.