Best Uruguay players of all time - ranked

  • Uruguay have won a record 15 Copa Americas
  • Luis Suarez is Uruguay's all-time leading goalscorer
  • Diego Forlan won the Golden Ball at the 2010 World Cup
Check out the best Uruguay players of all time ranked.
Check out the best Uruguay players of all time ranked. / Valentino Rossi/GettyImages

The best Uruguay players of all time have produced major silverware for La Celeste, including the 1950 World Cup and several Copa Americas.

Uruguay might have not had much success over the last decade, but the small nation has dominated world soccer in the past, winning a record 15 Copa Americas, as well as two World Cups. The biggest legends of the Uruguay National Team all performed exceptionally for both club and country, earning them a permanent spot in Uruguay's rich history.

Here's a breakdown of the five best players for La Celeste.

Best Uruguay players of all time - ranked

5. Enzo Francescoli

Nicolas Leoz(I),presidente de la Confederacion Sud
Enzo Francescoli won three Copa Americas for Uruguay. / ALEJANDRO PAGNI/GettyImages

Enzo Francescoli is one of the few players with three Copa America titles (1983, 1987, and 1995), contributing to Uruguay's record 15 total wins. El Principe won the Copa America Best Player Award at the 1983 and 1995 tournaments, cementing his legacy for La Celeste.

Francescoli retired from the national team with 73 caps and 17 goals.

4. Diego Forlan

Diego Forlan
Diego Forlan carried Uruguay at the 2010 World Cup. / Joern Pollex/GettyImages

Diego Forlan had one of the best performances for La Celeste this century at the 2010 World Cup. The forward won the Golden Ball at the tournament despite Uruguay's fourth-place finish, and also was the joint top-scorer with five goals. He would go on to score a brace against Paraguay in the 2011 Copa America final, helping his team win the tournament for a 15th time.

Forlan made his mark in his club career as well, winning the Premier League with Manchester United before his move to La Liga. The Uruguayan won the Pichichi twice, and also hoisted the Europa League trophy with Atletico Madrid.

3. Juan Alberto Schiaffino

Juan Alberto Schiaffino
Schiaffino scored the equalizer in the 1950 World Cup final for Uruguay. / Keystone/GettyImages

Juan Alberto Schiaffino just might be La Celeste's most talented playmaker. He was an instrumental part of Uruguay's winning 1950 World Cup campaign, scoring the equalizer against Brazil in the final before Ghiggia netted the winner. Schiaffino also had a legendary career at AC Milan, winning three consecutive Italian championships with the Rossoneri.

The only reason he is not ranked higher on our list is because the Uruguayan only had 21 caps with La Celeste before he began representing Italy's national team.

2. Luis Suarez

Luis Suarez
Luis Suarez is the all-time leading goalscorer for Uruguay. / Michael Reaves/GettyImages

Luis Suarez is Uruguay's greatest goalscorer in history. The No. 9 has the most goals for La Celeste with 68, and helped bring Uruguay their only major title this century with his performance at the 2011 Copa America. Suarez scored a brace in the semifinals against Peru and then the opener in the final against Paraguay.

Suarez's trophy cabinet also has silverware from his time at Europe's biggest clubs, including Liverpool, Barcelona, and Atletico Madrid, as well as a Pichichi award from his 40-goal 2015/16 La Liga season.

1. Obdulio Varela

Undated photograph of Uruguayan soccer p
Obdulio Varela is Uruguay's World Cup-winning captain. / AFP/Getty Images/GettyImages

Obdulio Varela was Uruguay's captain at the 1950 World Cup, and without his leadership, Uruguay could have very well never pulled off their astonishing upset over Brazil. Varela's legendary speech before the match and his presence in the midfield both calmed his side and filled them with belief.

Although he did not have as impressive of a club career as other Uruguayan players, the captain deserves his flowers leading his country to their second World Cup. In fact, Uruguay never lost a World Cup match with Varela on the pitch.