Breaking: Martinez now Portugal coach

Roberto Martinez

Former Belgium head coach Roberto Martinez has been named Portugal manager, it was announced on Monday.

Martinez left his role as Belgium manager after the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, where his side suffered a disappointing group-stage exit, finishing third in Group F behind Morocco and Croatia.

At Portugal, he replaces Fernando Santos, who spent eight years in charge and led them to their first major title at Euro 2016.

“I’m very happy to be here, I’m delighted to be able to represent one of the most talented teams in the world,” Martinez told a news conference on Monday.

“From the first time I met the board and the president, I knew that this was the project I wanted. I understand that there are high expectations and goals, but I also understand that there is a large group of people working to meet our goals.”

Portugal were eliminated from the World Cup at the quarterfinal stage in a 1-0 defeat to Morocco, in which Santos made the bold call to bench Cristiano Ronaldo for a second straight game. Santos later said he had “no regrets” about the decision.