Full Squad

Goalkeepers Beto (Sevilla), Eduardo (BB Istanbul), Rui Patrício (Sporting)

Defenders João Pereira (Valencia), Miguel Lopes (Sporting), Fábio Coentrão (Real Madrid), Luís Neto (Zenit), Bruno Alves (Zenit), Ricardo Costa (Valencia), Sereno (Valladolid)

Midfielders João Moutinho (FC Porto), Raul Meireles (Fenerbahçe), Miguel Veloso (Dynamo Kiev), Custódio (Braga), André Gomes (Benfica), Ruben Amorim (Braga), Danny (Zenit)

Forwards Nani (Manchester United), Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid), Hélder Postiga (Zaragoza), Éder (Braga), Nélson Oliveira (Deportivo La Corunña), Silvestre Varela (Porto)

A Seleção are hoping to get back on track after some recent disappointing performances against Russia, Northern Ireland and Gabon. Manager Paulo Bento will welcome back Fábio Coentrão and Raul Meireles after both have missed time with injuries.

Real Madrid defender Pepe underwent ankle surgery and will not play. Striker Hugo Almeida and Braga midfielder Ruben Micael were on the original squad announced on Friday, but have pulled out because of injuries as well. Sporting Lisbon defender Miguel Lopes injured his shoulder Saturday in a game against Rio-Ave and could face miss the match.

Benfica midfielder André Gomes and striker Nelson Oliveira replaced Almeida and Micael on the squad. The 19-year-old Gomes receives his first call up for the national team after a number of excellent performances for Benfica. Centre back Henrique Sereno who is playing on loan with Real Valladolid from Porto also received his first call-up. And Zenit midfielder Danny also returns after a long absence due to injury.

Deportivo’s Pizzi who scored in Portugal’s last match against Gabon was not called up. Neither were Braga’s Hugo Viana and Besiktas’ Manuel Fernandes. Portugal face a Ecuador squad that currently rank a surprising 12th in the FIFA ranking, the highest in the country’s history.

They are currently second to Argentina in South America World Cup qualifying despite the fact that they only have 4 players who play in European leagues: Antonio Valencia (Manchester United), Christian Noboa (Dynamo Moscow), Renato Ibarra (Vitesse) and Felipe Caicedo (Lokomotiv Moscow)

They should pose a formidable challenge for a Portugal team that has a recent history of underperforming against less talented squads. Paulo Bento has been under increased pressure to mix new players into his starting XI.

Look for Sporting Braga’s Éder to play along side Nani and Cristiano Ronaldo in place of Helder Positiga. This will be the 25-year-old’s fifth cap and he seems destined to break out on the national team after a good performance against Gabon. Seleção fans will also be keen to watch Gomes and Luis Neto who could receive their first caps.


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