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Portugal (Scroll down for Spanish) - Pool B
Portugal was one of the FIVB 14 founding countries in 1947 and just one year later the national team participated in the first European Championship in Italy and placed
fourth. In 1956, Portugal took part in a World Championship for the first time and finished 15th among 24 teams in that tournament held in France.
But for another success at the international level Portugal was forced to hold out until the turn of the century when Cuba's legendary coach Juan Diaz was appointed to take in hand and shape a next generation of
players. Diaz, highly regarded and who was named by the FIVB as one of the ten best coaches of the 20th Century began to work hard to build a team whose performance would match the world
elite. Under his command, Portugal for the second time qualified for the World Championship held last year in Argentina. The young and talented side performed very well throughout the tournament, achieving the surprising eighth place, and stamped themselves as one of the world's emerging teams. With some players as young as 17 years, they could have barely achieved more, but their 24-year-old Jose Joao went on to be awarded the best blocker of the
competition. Portugal took part for the first time in the prestigious World League in 1999. As a clear underdog they delivered a shock by beating powerhouse Cuba and also played well against Argentina and France. Their debut was an unexpected but pleasant surprise for the world of volleyball and managed to turn heads of expert observers.
They returned to the competition in the 2002 and 2003 editions, proving that they continued to work on their game and to mature as a team.
This year, Portugal, currently at the 14th place of the FIVB World ranking, will play in Pool B, together with Brazil, Italy, and
18 man squad (plus shirt name) Roberto Reis (Roberto), Carlos Teixeira (Teixeira), Joao Malveiro (Malveiro), Fabio Milhazes (Fabio), Manuel Silva (M.Silva), Pedro Fiuza (Fiuza), Hugo Gasper (H. Gasper), Adriano Paço
(A.Paço), Nuno Rocha (Nuno), Ubirajara Pereira (Bira), Joao Jose (J.Jose), Andre Lopes (Andre), Flavio Cruz (Flavio), Jorge Alves (J.Alves), Alexandre Castro (Alexandro), Hugo Ribeiro (H.Ribeiro), Eurico Peixoto (Eurico).