Fernando Santos has announced the Portugal squad for next week’s away matches against Poland and Scotland.

As for the September games, captain Cristiano Ronaldo has not been selected, while Santos has given a debut call-up to Wolves winger Hélder Costa.

Euro 2016 hero Eder Lopes is recalled, Porto’s defensive midfielder Danilo Pereira is back after returning from long-term injury, and Real Sociedad left-back Kevin Rodrigues also makes the cut after a lengthy absence.

Inevitably, the majority of the questions at the press conference centred around the absence of Cristiano Ronaldo amid the rape allegations surrounding the Portugal captain.

While not explicitly saying it was the reason for Ronaldo not being called up – he was left out of the squad for the September games too – Santos stated that the decision had been made after conversations between himself and Ronaldo and the head of the Portuguese Football Federation Fernando Gomes. Santos would not be drawn on the content of the conversations, but said he firmly believes in Ronaldo’s innocence and seconds the public support given to CR7 by Gomes.

Promising portents

The make-up of the squad is similar to the names chosen last month as the Seleção look to build on the promising displays by a new-look Portugal against Croatia (1-1 draw in the Algarve) and Italy (1-0 victory in Lisbon).

Wolves winger Hélder Costa is rewarded for good form shown in the Premier League and joins club team-mates Rui Patrício and Rúben Neves. Speaking about the recall of Eder, Santos said, “It’s true that Eder didn’t feature in World Cup qualifying and at the World Cup, but we always observe his games and we believe his performances merit this call-up.”

Kevin Rodrigues gets the shout in place of Raphael Guerreiro, whose 2018/19 season has once again been badly disrupted by injury.

Portugal travel to Poland for their second Nations League match on 11 October, then take on Scotland in Glasgow on 14 October in a friendly.

 

Full squad

Goalkeepers: Beto (Goztepe), Cláudio Ramos (Tondela), Rui Patrício (Wolves)

Defenders: Cédric Soares (Southampton), João Cancelo (Juventus), Kevin Rodrigues (Real Sociedad), Luis Neto (Zenit), Mário Rui (Napoli), Pedro Mendes (Montpellier), Pepe (Besiktas), Rúben Dias (Benfica)

Midfielders: Bruno Fernandes (Sporting), Danilo Pereira (FC Porto) Gedson Fernandes (Benfica), Pizzi (Benfica), Renato Sanches (Bayern), Rúben Neves (Wolves), Sérgio Oliveira (FC Porto), William Carvalho (Betis)

Forwards: André Silva (Sevilla), Bernardo Silva (Manchester City), Bruma (Leipzig), Eder Lopes (Lokomotiv Moscow), Gonçalo Guedes (Valencia), Hélder Costa (Wolves)

By Tom Kundert

 

Comments (6)

This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site

Pfft. I'd take Andre Pereira over Eder. After watching Guedes at Valencia he needs to start making better decisions when in possession - don't these players get coached?! Good to see Sérgio Oliveira involved. Andre Gomes has disappeared off the...

Pfft. I'd take Andre Pereira over Eder. After watching Guedes at Valencia he needs to start making better decisions when in possession - don't these players get coached?! Good to see Sérgio Oliveira involved. Andre Gomes has disappeared off the face of the planet.

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Nick,

I follow many of the football clubs with Portuguese players/coaches on Twitter.

Everton announced today Andre Gomes has passed his physical today, a minimum requirement to be added to the 1st team. He was off with an injury. Hopefully we...

Nick,

I follow many of the football clubs with Portuguese players/coaches on Twitter.

Everton announced today Andre Gomes has passed his physical today, a minimum requirement to be added to the 1st team. He was off with an injury. Hopefully we will be seeing him in the coming month/months playing with Everton. EPL might be good for him.

Good news!

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Also completely agree on Guedes. Ever since the World Cup he has been "meh" at best. Maybe the pressure/expectations got to him? I don't know but he needs to relax and just go back to that all out (almost recklessly) attacking of the ball.

Maybe...

Also completely agree on Guedes. Ever since the World Cup he has been "meh" at best. Maybe the pressure/expectations got to him? I don't know but he needs to relax and just go back to that all out (almost recklessly) attacking of the ball.

Maybe the injury scared him a bit Nick? But guys like Guedes cant play cautiously, they are balls to the wall attackers and need to stay that way.

Wilson Eduardo is only 28? Seems like he has been playing for decades! lol. Braga itself is a fantastic story and they seem to be coming together at the right time. We saw it last year with Braga but this season with the diluted Porto-Benfica-Sporting, might be a magical season for Braga and neutrals.

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What about Ricardo Horta and Wilson Eduardo, they deserve to be called up way ahead of helder costa and eder

This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site

I don't have any problems with the call-ups.

I'd utilize the following 11 for the Poland game:

Andre Silva
Goncalo Guedes
Bruma
Bernardo Silva
William Carvalho
Ruben Neves
Mario Rui
Joao Cancelo
Pepe
Ruben Dias
Rui Patricio

The Scotland...

I don't have any problems with the call-ups.

I'd utilize the following 11 for the Poland game:

Andre Silva
Goncalo Guedes
Bruma
Bernardo Silva
William Carvalho
Ruben Neves
Mario Rui
Joao Cancelo
Pepe
Ruben Dias
Rui Patricio

The Scotland friendly should serve as an opportunity to give some of our fringe players a shot.

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Did Anthony Lopes do something to upset Santos? Why is Beto still getting called up?
Same with Paulo Oliveira. He should be there instead of Neto.
Helder Costa is nothing special. Ricardo Horta should have been called instead. He’s been excellent...

Did Anthony Lopes do something to upset Santos? Why is Beto still getting called up?
Same with Paulo Oliveira. He should be there instead of Neto.
Helder Costa is nothing special. Ricardo Horta should have been called instead. He’s been excellent for a while now.
That leftback spot is very worrying. Rodrigues has barely played all season. Hopefully Mário Rui continues his good form because Guerreiro is just not able to be counted on. Wish Vinagre would get more playing time at Wolves.
Other than that great call ups and continuation of calling up youth.


Based on our last game I think we’ll see something like this with maybe Pizzi for Sanches.

------------------------Rui Patrício-----------------------------
João Cancelo---Pepe--------Rúben Dias-----Mário Rui
------------------------Rúben Neves----------------------------
---Renato Sanches-----------------William Carvalho---------
Bernardo Silva------André Silva---------Gonçalo Guedes


I really wish Santos would finally move Bernardo to midfield but we all know that won’t happen

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"He did well, like we expected."

Marco Silva
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