Roberto Martinez has been appointed as the head coach of the Portuguese national football team

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Former Belgium and Everton national team head coach Roberto Martinez has been appointed Portugal head coach.

The 49-year-old Spaniard will replace Fernando Santos, who resigned following Portugal’s quarter-final loss to Morocco at the World Cup last month.

Martinez went with Belgium head coach post after six years in charge following their group stage exit in Qatar.

“I am very happy to represent one of the national teams with the best talent in the world,” said Martinez.

“I am very happy to be here. From the first conversation with the president of the federation, I knew that this was a sports project that excited me.

“I understand that there are high expectations and big goals, but the federation has a great team of people and I am very happy that together we can achieve these goals.”

Portugal president Fernando Gomes said: “This is an important moment for the national team.”

Martinez spent four years in charge of Wigan, including winning the FA Cup in 2013, before spending three years at Everton, where he finished fifth once and 11th twice in the Premier League .

Appointed as Belgium coach in 2016, he led them to the top of the FIFA rankings in 2018 after they finished third at the World Cup.

Portugal won the 2016 European Championship and the 2018-19 Nations League during Santos’ eight years in charge.

However, they won just one of their three group matches in Qatar and their campaign was overshadowed by Santos fielding striker Cristiano Ronaldo for the knockout tie.

Martinez said: “My starting point will be a team of 26 players who have played at the World Cup, and Cristiano Ronaldo is one of them.”

He added that he will make decisions “on the field, not in the office.”

Some have criticized Martinez for not getting more from Belgium’s so-called “golden generation” of players, including Kevin de Bruyne, Eden Hazard and Romelu Lukaku.

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