Portugal head coach Fernando Santos has announced the list of 26 players that will feature for the defending champions at the upcoming Euro finals.
A squad jammed full of world-class talents includes the five-time Ballon d’Or winner Cristiano Ronaldo, Manchester United protagonist Bruno Fernandes and Manchester City’s defensive cornerstone Ruben Dias.
Although Eder, the very man who brought Portugal the Euro title in France five years ago, is not on the list, Santos has one of the strongest European rosters at his disposal.
Nine of his 26 players are first-team regulars in the Premier League. In addition to the abovementioned Ruben Dias, Joao Cancelo and Bernardo Silva are other Man City’s stars included in the team.
Jorge Mendes’ colony at Wolverhampton Wanderers counts the likes of Rui Patricio, Nelson Semedo, Ruben Neves and Joao Moutinho, with Pedro Neto failing to make the squad despite his call-up in the last international break.
Dias’ partner in the heart of Portugal’s backline will be always-present Pepe, who might be playing his final European Championship.
The titleholders boast one of the most formidable attacking lines heading into the tournament. Except for Ronaldo, Atletico Madrid ace Joao Felix, Liverpool speed-demon Diogo Jota, and Eintracht Frankfurt goal-machine Andre Silva have all made the grade.
Assigned to the ‘Group of Death’ next to the likes of Germany, France, and minnows Hungary, Portugal will face a stern test from the beginning of the tournament.
Portugal’s title defense will kick-start on June 15 against Hungary before heavyweight clashes against Germany and France on June 19 and June 23, respectively.
Portugal Full Squad:
Goalkeepers: Anthony Lopes (Lyon), Rui Patricio (Wolves), Rui Silva (Granada)
Defenders: Joao Cancelo (Man City), Nelson Semedo (Wolves), Jose Fonte (Lille), Pepe (Porto), Ruben Dias (Man City), Nuno Mendes (Sporting), Raphael Guerreiro (Dortmund)
Midfielders: Danilo Pereira (PSG), Joao Palhinha (Sporting), Ruben Neves (Wolves), Bruno Fernandes (Man United FC), Joao Moutinho (Wolves), Renato Sanches (Lille), Sergio Oliveira (Porto), William Carvalho (Real Betis)
Forwards: Pedro Goncalves (Sporting), Andre Silva (Frankfurt), Bernardo Silva (Man City), Cristiano Ronaldo (Juventus), Diogo Jota (Liverpool), Goncalo Guedes (Valencia), Joao Felix (Atletico Madrid), Rafa Silva (Benfica)