Nicaragua national football team

The Nicaragua national football team (Spanish: Selección de fútbol de Nicaragua) represents Nicaragua in men's international football and is controlled by the Nicaraguan Football Federation. Nicaragua achieved their first qualification into a major international competition in 2009, as they qualified for the 2009 Gold Cup as the last entrant from Central America, after a 2–0 victory against Guatemala in the fifth place match in the 2009 Nations Cup.[3] However, the team has never qualified for the FIFA World Cup.

Nicaragua
Shirt badge/Association crest
Nickname(s)La Azul y Blanco (The Blue and White)
Los Pinoleros (The Pinoleros)
AssociationFederación Nicaragüense de Fútbol (FENIFUT)
ConfederationCONCACAF (North America)
Sub-confederationUNCAF (Central America)
Head coachMarco Antonio Figueroa
CaptainJuan Barrera
Most capsJosué Quijano (95)
Top scorerJuan Barrera (24)
Home stadiumEstadio Nacional de Fútbol
FIFA codeNCA
First colours
Second colours
FIFA ranking
Current 130 Increase 5 (20 June 2024)[1]
Highest92 (December 2015)
Lowest193 (May 2001)
First international
 El Salvador 9–0 Nicaragua 
(San Salvador, El Salvador; 1 May 1929)
Biggest win
 Turks and Caicos Islands 0–7 Nicaragua 
(San Cristóbal, Dominican Republic; 27 March 2021)
Biggest defeat
 Honduras 10–0 Nicaragua 
(San José, Costa Rica; 13 March 1946)
 Curaçao 11–1 Nicaragua 
(Guatemala City, Guatemala; 2 March 1950)
CONCACAF Championship / Gold Cup
Appearances5 (first in 1963)
Best resultSixth place (1967)
Medal record

Due to American influence throughout the country's history, baseball has more of a following as both a pursuit and spectator event in Nicaragua than football.

History

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Nicaragua traveled to El Salvador for their first ever international, losing 9–0 to the hosts on 1 May 1929. They did not play another match for over twelve years, until the qualifying group for the 1941 CCCF Championship in Costa Rica. They lost all 4 games: 7–2 to the hosts Costa Rica on 10 May, 8–0 to El Salvador on 13 May, 9–1 to the Netherlands Antilles on 15 May and 5–2 to Panama on 18 May. Therefore, Nicaragua finished bottom of the group and did not make the final group.[4]

Recent times

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After qualifying for the 2019 Gold Cup on the back of finishing ninth in Nations League qualifying, they would go on to finish bottom of the group with losses to Costa Rica, Haiti and Bermuda.[5]

Nicaragua qualified directly for the 2023 Gold Cup and was promoted to Nations League A as group winners in Nations League B but was disqualified on 12 June 2023 for fielding an ineligible player. As a result, they were replaced in the Gold Cup and League A by Trinidad and Tobago, who was the best second-place team overall in League B and must stay in Nations League B.[6]

Team image

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Kit sponsorship

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Kit supplier Period
  Joma 2004–2021
  Keuka 2022–present

Results and fixtures

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The following is a list of match results in the last 12 months, as well as any future matches that have been scheduled.

  Win   Draw   Loss   Fixture

2023

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8 September 2023–24 Nations League Dominican Republic   0–2   Nicaragua Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic
19:00 UTC−4 Report
  • Acevedo   38', 41'
Stadium: Estadio Olímpico Félix Sánchez
Referee: Patrick Senecharles (Haiti)
11 September 2023–24 Nations League Nicaragua   5–1   Barbados Managua, Nicaragua
20:00 UTC−6
Report
Stadium: Estadio Nacional de Fútbol
Referee: Bryan López (Guatemala)
13 October 2023–24 Nations League Montserrat   0–3   Nicaragua Wildey, Barbados
15:00 UTC−4 Report
Stadium: Wildey Turf
Referee: Jorge Leira (Panama)
16 October 2023–24 Nations League Nicaragua   3–0   Montserrat Managua, Nicaragua
20:00 UTC−6
Report Stadium: Estadio Nacional de Fútbol
Referee: José Valladares (Honduras)
17 November 2023–24 Nations League Barbados   0–4   Nicaragua Wildey, Barbados
17:00 UTC−4 Report
Stadium: Wildey Turf
Referee: Kwinsi Williams (Trinidad and Tobago)
21 November 2023–24 Nations League Nicaragua   0–0   Dominican Republic Managua, Nicaragua
20:00 UTC−6 Report Stadium: Estadio Nacional de Fútbol
Referee: Ignacio Fuentes (Guatemala)

2024

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22 March Friendly Peru   2–0   Nicaragua Lima, Peru
20:30 UTC−5
Report Stadium: Estadio Alejandro Villanueva
Referee: Paulo Cesar Zanovelli da Silva (Brazil)
26 March Friendly Nicaragua   0–1   Cuba Managua, Nicaragua
19:00 UTC−6 Report
Stadium: Nicaragua National Football Stadium
Referee: Ricardo Mendoza (Nicaragua)
26 May Friendly Guatemala   1–1   Nicaragua San Jose, United States
17:00 UTC−7
Report
Stadium: PayPal Park
Referee: Jon Freemon (United States)
5 June 2026 FIFA World Cup qualification Nicaragua   4–1   Montserrat Managua, Nicaragua
20:00 UTC−6
Report
Stadium: Estadio Nacional de Fútbol
Attendance: 14,320
Referee: Tori Penso (United States)
8 June 2026 FIFA World Cup qualification Belize   0–4   Nicaragua Belmopan, Belize
18:00 UTC−6 Report
Stadium: FFB Field
Referee: Bryan López (Guatemala)
6 September 2024–25 Nations League French Guiana   v   Nicaragua French Guiana
--:-- UTC−3 Stadium: TBD
10 September 2024–25 Nations League Cuba   v   Nicaragua Cuba
--:-- UTC−4 Stadium: TBD
10 October 2024–25 Nations League Nicaragua   v   Jamaica Nicaragua
--:-- UTC−6 Stadium: TBD
14 October 2024–25 Nations League Nicaragua   v   French Guiana Nicaragua
--:-- UTC−6 Stadium: TBD

2025

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6 June 2026 FIFA World Cup qualification Nicaragua   v   Guyana Nicaragua
TBD
10 June 2026 FIFA World Cup qualification Panama   v   Nicaragua Panama
TBD

Coaching staff

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Position Name
Head coach   Marco Antonio Figueroa
Technical director   Roger Rodriguez
Assistant coach   Tyron Acevedo
Goalkeeping coach   Carlos Mendieta
Physical coordinator   Jaime Ruiz
Doctor   Dr. Cupertino Borrell
Physiotherapist   Zamir Cerna
Team coordinator   Cesar Castro Trinidad
Team coordinator   Nestor Díaz

Coaching history

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Players

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Current squad

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The following players were called up to the squad for 2026 FIFA World Cup qualification matches against Montserrat and Belize on 5 and 8 June 2024.[7]

Caps and goals correct as of 8 June 2024, after the match against Belize.

No. Pos. Player Date of birth (age) Caps Goals Club
1GK Miguel Rodríguez (2003-06-13) 13 June 2003 (age 21) 10 0   SJK
1GK César Salandia (2004-06-13) 13 June 2004 (age 20) 5 0   Real Estelí
1GK Jason Vega (1995-11-06) 6 November 1995 (age 28) 2 0   San Carlos

2DF Josué Quijano (1991-03-10) 10 March 1991 (age 33) 95 3   Real Estelí
2DF Marvin Fletes (1997-11-12) 12 November 1997 (age 26) 33 1   Real Estelí
2DF Óscar Acevedo (1997-03-18) 18 March 1997 (age 27) 25 2   Real Estelí
2DF Juan Luis Pérez (1999-06-29) 29 June 1999 (age 24) 11 3   Alajuelense
2DF Christian Reyes (1998-01-03) 3 January 1998 (age 26) 10 0   Pérez Zeledón
2DF Justing Cano (2002-03-02) 2 March 2002 (age 22) 3 0   Diriangén
2DF Pablo Rodríguez (2000-06-04) 4 June 2000 (age 24) 1 0   Managua

3MF Juan Barrera (captain) (1989-05-02) 2 May 1989 (age 35) 89 25   Managua
3MF Kevin Serapio (1996-04-09) 9 April 1996 (age 28) 28 1   Managua
3MF Matías Moldskred Belli (1997-08-12) 12 August 1997 (age 26) 25 7   Sandnes Ulf
3MF Harold Medina (2002-01-30) 30 January 2002 (age 22) 23 3   Real Estelí
3MF Henry Niño (1997-10-03) 3 October 1997 (age 26) 23 1   Real Estelí
3MF Junior Arteaga (1999-12-09) 9 December 1999 (age 24) 15 2   Diriangén
3MF Jacob Montes (1998-12-20) 20 December 1998 (age 25) 9 4   Botafogo
3MF Nextaly Rodríguez (1998-03-03) 3 March 1998 (age 26) 8 1   Sporting
3MF Jeremy Cuarezma (2000-05-28) 28 May 2000 (age 24) 2 0   Managua

4FW Jaime Moreno (1995-03-30) 30 March 1995 (age 29) 38 12   SJK
4FW Luis Fernando Coronel (1997-02-25) 25 February 1997 (age 27) 16 3   Diriangén
4FW Bancy Hernández (2000-06-27) 27 June 2000 (age 23) 14 2   Real Estelí
4FW Widman Talavera (2003-01-12) 12 January 2003 (age 21) 13 1   Real Estelí

Recent call-ups

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The following players have been called up for the team in the last twelve months.

Pos. Player Date of birth (age) Caps Goals Club Latest call-up
GK Alyer López (1999-05-16) 16 May 1999 (age 25) 4 0   Managua v.   Dominican Republic, 21 November 2023
GK Denver Fox (1997-11-22) 22 November 1997 (age 26) 3 0   Real Sociedad v.   Dominican Republic, 8 September 2023

DF Juan Luis Pérez (1999-06-29) 29 June 1999 (age 24) 9 3   Alajuelense v.   Cuba, 26 March 2024
DF Evert Martínez (2002-03-08) 8 March 2002 (age 22) 1 0   Real Estelí v.   Cuba, 26 March 2024
DF Melvin Hernández (1994-04-26) 26 April 1994 (age 30) 12 0   UNAN Managua v.   Dominican Republic, 21 November 2023
DF Jeffrey Chávez (1997-02-10) 10 February 1997 (age 27) 1 0   Municipal Liberia v.   Dominican Republic, 21 November 2023
DF Cristhiam Quinto (2001-01-17) 17 January 2001 (age 23) 0 0   Managua v.   Dominican Republic, 21 November 2023
DF Anyelo Velásquez (2004-12-22) 22 December 2004 (age 19) 0 0   Diriangén v.   Dominican Republic, 21 November 2023
DF Erick Téllez (1989-11-28) 28 November 1989 (age 34) 34 0   Diriangén v.   Barbados, 11 September 2023

MF Jason Coronel (1993-10-06) 6 October 1993 (age 30) 28 0   Diriangén v.   Cuba, 26 March 2024

FW Brayan López (1990-06-03) 3 June 1990 (age 34) 11 0   Puntarenas v.   Cuba, 26 March 2024
FW Anderson Treminio (1997-04-17) 17 April 1997 (age 27) 8 0   Real Santa Cruz v.   Cuba, 26 March 2024
FW Ariagner Smith (1998-12-13) 13 December 1998 (age 25) 20 7   FK Panevėžys v.   Dominican Republic, 21 November 2023
FW Byron Bonilla (1993-08-30) 30 August 1993 (age 30) 33 6   Real Estelí v.   Barbados, 11 September 2023

INJ Player withdrew from the squad due to an injury.
PRE Preliminary squad.
RET Player retired from the national team.
SUS Player is serving suspension.
WD Player withdrew from the squad due to non-injury issue.
INE Ineligible player.

Records

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As of 22 March 2024[8]
Players in bold are still active with Nicaragua.

Most appearances

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Josué Quijano is Nicaragua's most-capped player with 92 international appearances.
Rank Player Caps Goals Career
1 Josué Quijano 92 3 2011–present
2 Juan Barrera 85 25 2009–present
3 Manuel Rosas 60 2 2013–2022
4 David Solórzano 49 1 1999–2014
5 Carlos Chavarría 44 11 2013–present
6 Marlon López 40 0 2014–2020
7 Luis Copete 39 3 2014–2023
Denis Espinoza 39 1 2004–2021
9 Carlos Alonso 37 0 1999–2011
10 Jaime Moreno 36 10 2016–present

Top goalscorers

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Juan Barrera is Nicaragua's all-time top scorer with 25 goals.
Rank Player Goals Caps Ratio Career
1 Juan Barrera 25 85 0.28 2009–present
2 Emilio Palacios 11 26 0.42 2001–2009
Carlos Chavarría 11 44 0.25 2013–present
4 Jaime Moreno 10 36 0.28 2016–present
5 Raúl Leguías 8 23 0.35 2011–2016
6 Ariagner Smith 7 18 0.39 2017–present
7 Byron Bonilla 6 33 0.18 2016–present
Luis Galeano 6 35 0.17 2015–present
9 Matías Moldskred 7 22 0.32 2021–present
10 Rudel Calero 4 26 0.15 2001–2011
Samuel Wilson 4 29 0.14 2001–2013

Competitive record

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FIFA World Cup

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The Nicaragua national football team has never qualified for the World Cup. Their latest attempt was for the 2022 World Cup, when the side failed to advance from the first round.

FIFA World Cup record Qualification record
Year Round Position Pld W D L GF GA Pld W D L GF GA
  1930 Not a FIFA member Not a FIFA member
  1934
  1938
  1950 Did not enter Declined participation
  1954
  1958
  1962
  1966
  1970
  1974
  1978
  1982
  1986
  1990
  1994 Did not qualify 2 0 0 2 1 10
  1998 2 0 0 2 1 3
    2002 4 0 0 4 0 10
  2006 2 0 1 1 3 6
  2010 2 0 0 2 0 3
  2014 4 2 0 2 5 7
  2018 6 5 0 1 15 5
  2022 3 2 0 1 10 1
      2026 Qualification in progress 2 2 0 0 8 1
      2030 To be determined To be determined
  2034
Total 0/19 27 11 1 15 43 46

CONCACAF Gold Cup

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CONCACAF Championship & Gold Cup record Qualification record
Year Round Position Pld W D* L GF GA Squad Pld W D L GF GA
  1963 Group stage 8th 4 0 0 4 2 15 Squad Qualified automatically
  1965 Did not qualify 2 1 0 1 2 4
  1967 Sixth place 6th 5 0 1 4 3 12 Squad 2 1 0 1 4 4
  1969 Did not enter Did not enter
  1971 Did not qualify 2 0 0 2 2 4
  1973 Did not enter Did not enter
  1977
  1981
1985
1989
  1991 Did not qualify 2 0 0 2 2 5
    1993 2 0 0 2 0 8
  1996 2 0 0 2 0 7
  1998 2 0 0 2 2 11
  2000 2 0 0 2 0 2
  2002 3 0 0 3 2 19
    2003 5 1 0 4 1 11
  2005 3 1 0 2 2 9
  2007 4 1 0 3 6 14
  2009 Group stage 11th 3 0 0 3 0 8 Squad 4 1 2 1 5 6
  2011 Did not qualify 4 0 1 3 2 7
  2013 3 0 1 2 2 5
    2015 3 0 0 3 0 6
  2017 Group stage 10th 3 0 0 3 1 7 Squad 7 2 1 4 9 9
      2019 Group stage 15th 3 0 0 3 0 8 Squad 4 3 0 1 9 2
  2021 Did not qualify 6 2 1 3 9 11
    2023 Disqualified[9] 6 4 2 0 15 5
Total Sixth place 5/27 18 0 1 17 6 50 68 17 8 43 74 149

CONCACAF Nations League

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CONCACAF Nations League record
League Finals
Season Division Group Pld W D L GF GA P/R Year Result Pld W D L GF GA Squad
2019–20 B D 6 2 1 3 9 11     2021 Ineligible
2022–23 B C 6 4 2 0 15 5     2023
2023–24 B B 6 5 1 0 17 1     2024
2024–25 A B To be determined   2025 To be determined
Total 18 11 4 3 41 17 Total 0 Titles

Copa Centroamericana

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Copa Centroamericana record
Year Round Position Pld W D L GF GA
  1991 Preliminary round 5th 2 0 0 2 2 5
  1993 Preliminary round 5th 2 0 0 2 0 8
  1995 Preliminary round 7th 2 0 0 2 0 7
  1997 First round 6th 2 0 0 2 2 11
  1999 First round 5th 2 0 0 2 0 2
  2001 First round 7th 3 0 0 3 2 19
  2003 Sixth place 6th 5 1 0 4 1 11
  2005 Fifth place 5th 3 1 0 2 2 9
  2007 Sixth place 6th 4 1 0 3 6 14
  2009 Fifth place 5th 4 1 2 1 5 6
  2011 Sixth place 6th 4 0 1 3 2 7
  2013 Seventh place 7th 3 0 1 2 2 5
  2014 Sixth place 6th 3 0 0 3 0 6
  2017 Fifth place 5th 5 1 1 3 5 6
Total Fifth place 14/14 44 5 5 34 29 116

CCCF Championship

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CCCF Championship record
Year Round Position Pld W D L GF GA
  1941 Fifth place 5th 4 0 0 4 5 29
  1943 Fourth place 4th 6 0 0 6 7 39
  1946 Sixth place 6th 5 1 0 4 5 31
  1948 Did not enter
  1951 Third place 3rd 4 0 0 4 4 22
  1953 Sixth place 6th 6 1 0 5 4 18
  1955 Did not enter
  1957
  1960
  1961 Ninth place 9th 3 0 0 3 3 18
Total Third place 6/10 28 2 0 26 28 157

Pan American Games

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Pan American Games record
Year Round Position Pld W D L GF GA
  1951 Did not enter
  1955
  1959
  1963
  1967
  1971
  1975 Preliminary round 13th 3 0 0 3 2 23
  1979 Did not enter
  1983
  1987
  1991 Preliminary round 8th 3 0 0 3 1 20
  1995 Did not qualify
  1999
  2003
  2007
  2011
  2015
  2019
  2023
Total Preliminary round 2/19 6 0 0 6 3 43

Central American and Caribbean Games

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Central American and Caribbean Games record
Year Round Position Pld W D L GF GA
  1930 Did not qualify
  1935
  1938
  1946
  1950 Group stage 8th 3 0 0 3 4 19
  1954 Did not qualify
  1959
  1962
  1966
  1970
  1974
  1978
  1982 Group stage 7th 3 0 1 2 2 6
  1986 Did not qualify
  1990
  1993
  1998 Quarter-finals 8th 4 1 0 3 3 13
  2002 Quarter-finals 8th 3 1 0 2 2 7
  2006 Did not qualify
  2010
  2014
  2018
Total Quarter-finals 4/22 13 2 1 10 11 45

Central American Games

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Central American Games record
Year Round Position Pld W D L GF GA
  1973 Runners-up 2nd 4 2 1 1 4 3
  1977 Third place 3rd 6 2 0 4 6 23
  1986 Third place 3rd 3 0 2 1 1 5
  1990 Third place 3rd 4 0 0 4 1 11
  1994 Group stage 6th 2 0 0 2 0 17
  1997 Group stage 6th 2 0 0 2 3 8
  2001 Group stage 5th 3 1 0 2 5 8
  2006 Not held
  2010
  2013 Group stage 7th 3 0 0 3 1 9
  2017 Third place 3rd 4 1 2 1 2 1
Total Runners-up 9/11 31 6 5 20 23 85

Head-to-head record

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As of 8 June 2024 after the match against   Belize.[10]

  Positive Record   Neutral Record   Negative Record

  1. ^ Includes matches against   Netherlands Antilles.

See also

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References

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  1. ^ "The FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking". FIFA. 20 June 2024. Retrieved 20 June 2024.
  2. ^ Elo rankings change compared to one year ago. "World Football Elo Ratings". eloratings.net. 21 June 2024. Retrieved 21 June 2024.
  3. ^ "Nicaragua shocks Guatemala 2–0 to claim last berth in CONCACAF Gold Cup". CONCACAF. 29 January 2009. Archived from the original on 2 February 2009. Retrieved 29 January 2009.
  4. ^ "Nicaragua - List of International Matches". RSSSF. Archived from the original on 24 February 2023. Retrieved 4 January 2017.
  5. ^ "Bermuda downs Nicaragua to earn first ever Gold Cup victory". New Jersey: Gold Cup. 24 June 2019. Archived from the original on 6 March 2021. Retrieved 9 August 2019.
  6. ^ "Concacaf Disciplinary Committee decision regarding Nicaragua and the Eligibility of Players" (Press release). CONCACAF. 12 June 2023. Retrieved 12 June 2023.
  7. ^ "Convocatoria Oficial" (in Spanish). Nicaraguan Football Federation. 18 May 2024 – via Facebook.
  8. ^ Passo Alpuin, Luis Fernando. "Nicaragua – Record International Players". RSSSF. Archived from the original on 5 April 2023. Retrieved 2 February 2023.
  9. ^ "Concacaf Disciplinary Committee decision regarding Nicaragua and the Eligibility of Players" (Press release). CONCACAF. 12 June 2023. Retrieved 12 June 2023.
  10. ^ "World Football Elo Ratings: Nicaragua".
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