Cristiano Ronaldo is included in Portugal’s star-studded squad for next Wednesday’s World Cup qualifier against Ireland in Faro.
Ronaldo suffered an arm injury while training with Juventus on Wednesday but has been named in Fernando Sanches’ formidable selection, although Renato Sanches and João Félix are sidelined.
Also included are Man City’s João Cancelo, Rúben Dias and Bernardo Silva, Man United’s Bruno Fernandes and Diogo Jota of Liverpool.
“Ireland works a lot, fights a lot,” warned boss Sanches, who has also included newcomers Otávio, Gonçalo Inácio, João Mário and Diogo Costa.
“If we’re not at our best level, we could have problems.
“The Irish national team played an excellent game in Serbia, for example. You have to respect your opponent a lot.”
Stephen Kenny is naming his Ireland squad on Thursday for the trio of qualifiers against Portugal, Azerbaijan (September 4) and Serbia (September 7), with Enda Stevens and Callum Robinson out of at least the first two games.
Goalkeepers: Anthony Lopes (Lyon), Diogo Costa (Porto), Rui Patrício (Roma).
Defenders: João Cancelo (Manchester City), Ricardo Pereira (Leicester), Domingos Duarte (Granada), Gonçalo Inácio (Sporting Lisbon), Pepe (Porto), Rúben Dias (Manchester City), Nuno Mendes (Sporting Lisbon), Raphael Guerreiro (Borussia Dortmund), Danilo (PSG).
Midfielders: João Palhinha (Sporting Lisbon), Rúben Neves (Wolves), Bruno Fernandes (Manchester United), João Mário (Porto), João Moutinho (Wolves), Octávio (Porto), Bernardo Silva (Manchester City), André Silva (Leipzig).
Forwards: Cristiano Ronaldo (Juventus), Diogo Jota (Liverpool), Gonçalo Guedes (Valencia), Pedro Gonçalves (Sporting Lisbon) Rafa (Benfica).