UEFA rankings: Portugal on the up and up

Champions League and Europa League places at stake

The strong showing of Portugal’s club teams in European football in recent seasons is reflected in the country’s high position in the UEFA coefficients ranking table. As a result, Liga ZON Sagres clubs will be well represented in the Champions League and Europa League in the coming seasons. The position in the table at the end of the season defines how many teams each country is entitled to in the two European club competitions.
Portugal achieved a record points total in 2010/11 (18.800), largely thanks to the runs of FC Porto, Braga and Benfica to the latter stages of the Europa League. All three clubs reached the semi-final, with Porto beating Braga in the all-Portuguese final in Dublin.
One year later Portugal overtook France, jumping from sixth to fifth place. As a result, the club that finished third in the Liga ZON Sagres in 2011/12 (Braga) went directly into the Champions League playoff, instead of having to get through the third qualifying round. The Arsenalistas subsequently made it past Udinese, meaning this season Portugal have three clubs in the Champions League and three clubs in the Europa League.

At this rate of improvement, it is feasible that Portugal can leapfrog Italy into fourth in the table.


Keep track of the situation throughout the season on this page which will be updated on a regular basis.

UEFA clubs country rankings (updated 21/09/12)

  Country 08/09   09/10 10/11 11/12 12/13 Total  Teams in Europe 




























































































Points system

The rankings are based on performances over the last five seasons, and determine the number of places that each national association will have in the UEFA Champions League and UEFA Cup.

Two points are awarded for a win and one for a draw, divided by the total number of teams from the respective country participating in the two European competitions.

Clubs that reach the first knockout round, quarter-finals, semi-finals or final of the Champions League or the quarter-finals, semi-finals or final of the UEFA Cup are awarded an extra point for each such round. An additional three points are awarded for participation in the Champions League.

Comments (28)
German ranking
28 Thursday, 08 November 2012 14:38
Im not a German, but German teams are the best this year, and probably we'll see a German final in London in may, my tip Bayern-Dortmund! Germany passed italy in the rankings last year, and now it's time to fight the English and the Spanish :) looking forward
Great coverage
27 Friday, 31 August 2012 14:32
I love following the leauge rankings and the coefficients - and Portugoal does a fantastic job covering it - thanks! I dont think there is any other place you can go for a comprehensive, easy to understand breakdown of the UEFA coefficient, and the focus on the Liga Zon Sagres clubs is a bonus. Thanks guys - love the site and the coverage!!!
Portugal worth their spot
26 Friday, 31 August 2012 10:10
Jon if your talking strength in depth then your probably right about France and Russia having more quality at the lower ends of their respective leagues, and its only to be expected given those countries population size and wealth. But the fact of the matter is that European co-efficiency rankings are based on performances in European club competitions and therefore reflects the strength of the top 5-6 teams in the European leagues. When you look at the performances of Portuguese teams in Europe over the last 8-9 years the Russian and French clubs haven't enjoyed anywhere near the level of success of European clubs. In the last two seasons alone Porto and Benfica have swept aside the best the Russian league has to offer and Porto have an excellent record against Russian and French teams.

Portuguese teams in Europe are quite simply more successful than those in France and Russia, (Porto bear Marseille, Lyon and Monaco on route to becoming European champions in 2004 and CSKA and Spartak Moscow in 2011 to lift the Europa cup).

Benfica, Braga and Porto's Europa league achievements in 2011 is what propelled Portugal from 10th in the rankings to fifth at a time when France and Russia were placed 5 and 6 respectively.Portugal are well worth there 5th position in the rankings - all the clubs have worked hard to get them there
League Comparisons
25 Saturday, 22 October 2011 20:21
To Jon/USA- you could argue that the French league is better than ours, but if you look at a recent friendly( this summer) Rio Ave played St Etienne in France and came away with a 1-0 win and was unfortunate to not get more( Rio is in last in Por. League). After knowing this it makes one wonder, are they really that better than us if at all?
Are we really better than the French league?
24 Saturday, 22 October 2011 11:41
I agree that Benfica, Porto, and Sporting are all great teams. Braga is very good and Maritimo, Guimaraes, and Nacional are decent, but after that, the clubs in our league are the equivalent of the italian or spanish second division (if even). The French league has PSG, Lyon, Lille, Marseille and the rest of the league is considerably stronger than the minnows in the Portuguese league. I watch the french league from time to time and teams like Sochaux and Lorient are much better than Beira-Mar and Rio Ave.

While I would love to see Benfica, Porto, and Sporting in the champions league, I have a hard time believing that we are better than the French. The Russians arguably also have a better league than us because of their depth. Zenit, CSKA Moscow, Dinamo, Rubin Kazan, and now Anzhi are all very good teams.
23 Saturday, 22 October 2011 01:04
i asked the same question last month but perhaps nobody knows , is this the first time portugal has been as high as 5th in the coeffiecants , what about in the 60's in the hayday of benfica ?
22 Friday, 21 October 2011 17:12
Porto needs to get their act together and start winning some CL games so Portugal can can hold on to that 5th place spot.
21 Friday, 21 October 2011 07:43
The difference between Portugal and France is very small, and a good result for the French teams in a single match day means they'll overtake us again.
If only Porto and Braga had won in the last two matchdays...
Team 5th and 6th
20 Sunday, 18 September 2011 13:27
I think we can get 5th position and maybe even fourth but the problem will be maintaining that position. To do that we need other teams to step up. In recent years Nacional and Maritimo have both failed and the same can be said about Guimaraes although they had bad luck in facing Atletico. We are acheiving our high rankings through the efforts of our top 4 but we need the others to step up. Im not an expert but it would be interesting to see who you guys think can make that step and qualify for the europa league groups stages and possibly advance. Anyone remember years back Boavista in the champions league knocking out Liverpool? we have the ability but we need one of these clubs to step up
Braga & Sporting The Key
19 Friday, 16 September 2011 23:02
Braga & Sporting are the key here in getting the third spot.

Portugal is going to get a third spot next year , that's gauranteed but we'll need to ensure that Sporting and Braga who will most likely take that spot , keep it.

lets hope so.

Braga are certainly making a name for themselves
Has Portugal ever been 5th in the UEFA rankings ?
18 Friday, 16 September 2011 18:30
hi this is the question that i have for you guys out there , i know portugal has been up to 6th in the uefa rankings before but have they ever been up to 5th ? does anyone know ?
17 Saturday, 27 August 2011 04:59
hi when I add the five columns for eachey year including this years, the total doesn't add up, why is that?
Great Update
16 Friday, 26 August 2011 16:46
Thanks for bringing this back out.

We took a bit of a hit with Guimaraes and Nacional bowing out. But the good news keeps coming.

I know everyone is looking at France, but Italy is who I think we can catch. Kepp in mind that I also think that France could pass Italy.

Napoli: In the Group of Death of teh CL and could finish 4th and out of Europe.

Inter: Should advance. but Sneidjer could also be on his way out. Don't underestimate the loss of Eto'o. They look very ordinary, all of a sudden.

Milan: For me they have the best squad from Serie A that could do damage. But they have Barca in their group so they 2nd seems most likely and that means drawing a bigger team.

Only Lazio and Udi are in Europa and their groups are far from easy. Especially since they usually ignore the Europa League.

Lille, Marseille, and Lyon have a lot to do in order to advance in the CL. Very tough groups for them. They will also have a tough task in Ligue 1
PSG could do well in Europa, but they will be concentrating in winning the league.
Rennes should bow out early in Europa.

I like Benfica's chances of advancing, but I do feel that Porto has a tougher route. That being said, they both should advance in the CL. Although very disapointing, they would most likely qualify for Europa should things fall apart.

Sporting also has a tough group in Europa, but raga could once again make its mark.

It will be very interesting, but please don't discount the Russian and Ukraine clubs that are left. They take both competitions very seriously and won't drop points easily.

PS I can't help it but laugh at Shane's comments from bat in September of '09.
Great topic
15 Friday, 26 August 2011 16:12
I love following this topic. Given the history of our various clubs, we should be ahead of France and we’re getting closer. I would say with Benfica, Porto, Sporting, and Braga having good groups for the CL/EL, we should all progress for the next round which could put us closer to our goal.
Portugal Champions League
14 Thursday, 27 January 2011 18:11
This is good for all Portuguese football we need to maintain 6th spot or better 4 all "Forca Porto"!!!
bonus point (wikipedia)
13 Friday, 10 September 2010 09:18
For the league coefficient the season's league coefficients for the last five seasons must be added up. In the preliminary rounds of both the Champions League and Europa League, the awarded points are halved. Bonus points are allocated for:

* Qualifying for the Champions League group phase. (4 bonus points)
* Reaching the second round of the Champions League. (5 bonus points)
* Reaching the quarter, semi and final of either the Champions League or the Europa League. (1 bonus point)

The bonus points are added to the number of points scored in a season.
extra point
12 Thursday, 09 September 2010 15:55
in Group Stage Champion League + 3 or +4?
Portugal total point in 10/11 = 4x5= 20 points
Braga win Celtic 1 match, Sevilla 2 Match = 1x3 = 3
Porto win 2 = 1x2= 2
Sporting win 3, lose 1= 3x1= 3
Matirimo win 4, lose 2 = 4x1 = 4
total = 3+2+3+4= 12
and 3 points for Braga, 3 points for Benfica in Group Stage Champion League
Total = 12+6= 18
where are 2 points ?
i think awarded for participation in the Champions League are 4 points
bonus point
11 Thursday, 09 September 2010 15:39
How about Bonus ponit? if a team in Group Stage Champion League +4, and 1/16 => +5 ? Teams in Europa League Group Stage not + point ?
10 Friday, 06 August 2010 23:02
i think portugal should be 6 and russia 7 and turkey 8 portuguese clubas has more success than russia and ukraine ........Q7-BJK . )
Portugal will still rise
9 Friday, 06 August 2010 20:07
I believe if Braga can pass Sevilla to get into the Champions League group stage then I think we can surpass Ukraine and Russia next year because i'm not too worried about Porto, Sporting and Benfica.
Great News
8 Friday, 06 August 2010 15:24
Please keep updating us on the progress.
It's imperative that Portugal earns that third Champions League spot back. If we don't, the league will soon be know for the "Big Two" instead of "Big Three".

Braga has to somehow get into the Champions League Group Stage, and Benfica advance past it.

Porto, Sporting and Maritimo need to also advance in teh Europa League and one of them has to at least get into the semis.

That would be terrific for the Portuguese League.
I am a huge Benfica fan, but I too root for the Porrtuguese squads in European play. Although it pains me a great deal, I even support Sporting in those events.
Great Update
7 Friday, 06 August 2010 15:06
I hope this can help some people. I posted this site on here a year ago when this topic came up:

It will provide you all the definitions, ranks, how everything is calculated, current/past rankings, etc… Great site for tracking this stuff. I hadn’t checked it in a while but its great that we are doing so well. If all of our teams make it to the group stage it will help us get some good points.

Depending on year we could jump up to 6th place. This would be huge since the difference between 7th and 6th is that we would get 3 CL spots and still get 3 teams into Europa. Extra CL will give our bigger teams more cash, the extra Europa team will increase the amount of overall cash our league can get. This can also help the mid-table teams get better sponsorship contracts if they have greater odds of playing in Europe.
7th atleast
6 Sunday, 28 February 2010 01:10
I think Portugal league should be at 7th place. Porto has been in the last 16 of champions league the last few yearsep home grown players in the Sagres league, the league would be up there.
5 Friday, 26 February 2010 15:00
Apparently because Romania had a good year four years ago. It will right itself next year.

Good but confusing?
4 Friday, 26 February 2010 03:16
It's good to hear Portugal is not 10th anymore and moved to ninth but how is the Romanian league ahead of us? What has the Romanian clubs done to surpass the Portuguese league.
Forca Portuguese Futebol
3 Friday, 26 February 2010 02:32
Solid results for the "Big 3" in Europe this month...So happy to see our teams performing way better than last season...Also all the countries around us (Holland, Romania, and Ukraine) have all their teams out of Europe...So by the end of the season I could see Portugal sitting in seventh and hopefully next season we challenge Russia for that sixth spot...

Forca Portugal
The ultimate goal
2 Friday, 26 February 2010 01:16
Although I was raised as a Benfia supporter, when asked who my team is in the liga I reply by saying I support all Portuguese teams. I basically comes down to wanting whats best for Portuguese futebol. More wins in Europe= more teams in Europe, which= more money for the teams in portugal, which= more resources for developing young talent. With the ultimate goal being a major international title. Not to mention its very fulfilling watching a team like Sporting dismantel a team from the "great " EPL.
Thanks for putting this up
1 Friday, 26 February 2010 01:11
As are teams do well it would be great to track this after every round.
Last Updated on Friday, 21 September 2012 08:43