Top 10 Best Peruvian Soccer Players of All Time

Thanks to their struggle to reach the World Cup, Peruvian players are once again having a leading role worldwide after many years of being in the shadows due to failures and poor results. Peru played the last World Cup held in 2018 in Russia and was once again in the spotlight of international football.

Best Peruvian Soccer Players of All Time

We want to make a list of the 10 best Peruvian soccer players of all time that are part of the history of the  Peruvian team.

1. ALBERTO “TOTO” TERRY

He was a very complete, talented, and mischievous offensive midfielder who played most of his career at the  Sports University between the 1940s and 1950s. “Toto” Terry scored 115 goals in 210 official matches in the First Division of Peruvian soccer and with the Peruvian team, 11 goals. In 1957 Copa América Terry was chosen as the best player of his position over the Brazilian Didí and the Argentine Sívori. He had offers from Boca Juniors, Fluminense, and even from Italy’s Lazio, but he never wanted to leave Lima.

2. PEDRO PABLO “PERICO” LEÓN

“Perico” is one of the best strikers the Peruvian team has ever had. Between the 60s and 70s that position was reserved only for him. A powerful, skilled player with unusual heading ability. He made his debut with  Alianza Lima, a team with which he won three national championships. 

He scored the goal that would eliminate Argentina from the 1970 World Cup in Mexico and classify Peru to that competition where he reached the quarterfinals. With the Peruvian team, he scored 15 goals in 49 games

3. JULIO MELÉNDEZ

One of the best defenders the Peruvian team has had. He performed as a center-back, where he showed his great hierarchy by controlling rivals without resorting to rough play. 

He got the 1975 Copa América, where he paired with Chumpitaz. He played four years in Boca Juniors, a team in which he became an idol, to the point that he is considered within the historical eleven of that team.

4. HÉCTOR CHUMPITAZ

Called the “Captain of America”, Chumpitaz is for many the best Peruvian defender of all time. For Twenty years, he was the captain and a great defensive bulwark of the team, with which he won the 1975 Copa América.

He participated in the 1970 and 1978 World Cups. He is considered among the 100 best footballers in the history of the World Cup. , according to The Guardian newspaper.

5. HUGO “EL CHOLO” SOTIL

The soil was a skilled striker, with magnificent dribbling and handling of both profiles. He is one of the greatest exponents of the remarkable generation of  Peruvian footballers of the 70s. 

He was also a member of the team that won the 1975 Copa América. In addition, he scored 15 goals in 49 games with his team. He came to play in Barcelona alongside the mythical Johan Cruyff with whom he formed a lethal offensive duo.

6. TEÓFILO “EL NENE” CUBILLAS

The maximum reference of  Peruvian football around the world. He was an attacking midfielder gifted with exquisite technique, power, change of pace, and dribbling skills. 

Thanks to his great scoring ability, “Nene” Cubillas is the ninth scorer in the history of the Soccer World Cup (10 goals) and is the top scorer of all World Cup midfielders. He is considered by the IFFHS as the best Peruvian footballer of the 20th century and one of the best South American footballers of the 20th century.

7. CÉSAR CUETO

For many, the most technical and skilled player who has passed through the Peruvian team, which is why he is called “El Poeta de la Zurda”. In general, Cueto was an offensive midfielder of exceptional skill, ball control, the vision of the game, and category to assist his teammates. He stood out with the Peruvian team in the World Cups in 78 and 82. He is considered an idol in Atlético Nacional de Medellín.

8. JOSÉ “EL PATRÓN” VELÁSQUEZ

He was a defensive midfielder of great technical play and elegance. In addition, he played with courage and always imposed his presence. He was a member of the team that won the 1975 Copa América and participated in the World Cup in Argentina 78 and Spain 82.

In the latter, he was considered the ideal team for the first round. Despite his defensive work, he scored 12 goals for his national team.

9. JULIO CÉSAR URIBE

He was a point guard midfielder with superlative dribbling and technique, as well as astonishing elegance to play. In 1981, Uribe was considered the third-best player in America, behind Maradona and Zico. 

With the Peruvian team, he scored nine goals and played in the 1982 World Cup, where he was considered the figure of the team. In the 80s, he popularized the play known as “the elastic”.

10. PAOLO GUERRERO

He is the current captain and leader of the Peruvian team, as well as the historical top scorer with 32 goals. He has achieved third place in the Copa América in 2011 and 2015. In addition, in both editions, he was the top scorer of the tournament with five and four goals respectively. With this, he is the top active scorer of the tournament with 11 goals.

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