Bento trims Portugal squad to final 23 for World Cup

FBL-WC2014-NIR-POR

By DAN KARELL

Less than a week after announcing its preliminary World Cup roster, Portugal has settled on the final 23 for Brazil.

Headlined by Cristiano Ronaldo, Joao Moutinho, and Pepe, Portugal is taking a strong and experienced squad to the 2014 World Cup as it faces Germany, the United States and then Ghana in Group G. The biggest headline of Monday’s roster announcement was that volatile but incredibly talented winger Ricardo Quaresma had not made the final squad, despite making a surprise appearance on the final 30.

The Portugal squad will meet up on Wednesday in Cascais, on the southern coast of the country, and will begin training that day in nearby Estoril. After moving up the coast to Obidos, they’ll face Greece on May 31 in Lisbon in their send-off match from Portugal.

On June 2 the squad will arrive in the U.S. and make their home in New Jersey for the next seven days, training at the New York Jets training facility. On June 6 Portugal will face Mexico at Gillette Stadium and on June 10 they’ll play their final warm-up match against the Republic of Ireland at MetLife Stadium.

Here’s a closer look at Portugal’s 23-man roster for the 2014 World Cup:

GOALKEEPERS: Beto (Sevilla), Eduardo (SC Braga), Rui Patrício (Sporting Lisbon)

DEFENDERS: André Almeida (Benfica), Bruno Alves (Fenerbahçe), Fábio Coentrão (Real Madrid), João Pereira (Valência), Neto (Zenit St. Petersburg), Pepe (Real Madrid), Ricardo Costa (Valência)

MIDFIELDERS: João Moutinho (AS Mónaco), Miguel Veloso (Dynamo Kiev), Raul Meireles (Fenerbahçe), Rúben Amorim (Benfica), William Carvalho (Sporting Lisbon), Rafa (SC Braga)

FORWARDS: Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid), Éder (SC Braga), Hélder Postiga (Lazio), Hugo Almeida (Besiktas), Nani (Manchester United), Varela (FC Porto), Vieirinha (Wolfsburg)

——

What do you think of Portugal’s squad? Think that they can make it out of the group?

Share your thoughts below.

This entry was posted in Featured, FIFA World Cup, International Soccer, World Cup 2014. Bookmark the permalink.

81 Responses to Bento trims Portugal squad to final 23 for World Cup

  1. Maykol says:

    Definitely surprised to see Quaresma cut. Thought he had played very well with Porto

  2. jb says:

    $!#/&^

  3. William the Terror says:

    Wow. That Ronaldo guy made the team. Shocking. He hasn’t done much since he left United.

    • i'm not a woman says:

      u drunk? He’s been at madrid for 5 years breaking records. Best player in the world. I hate how you guys focus only on the Premier League and know nothing else of the world of football.

      • i'm not a woman says:

        *waits for someone to take the bait*

        gotta give it to Ronnie. He’s been world class in the 2 best football leagues in the world. not many can do that in just 1

        • William the Terror says:

          Glad you responded to yourself. Otherwise I might have thought you were drunk.

        • Charles says:

          No he hasn’t, Ronaldo has only played in one of the top 2 leagues in the world. He did also play in the 3rd or 4th best though.

      • duke says:

        Sorry, the best player in the world is Messi

        • ChrisTheLSUTiger says:

          In the last few years? Definitely. But this season? Hands down Ronaldo.

  4. Mason says:

    Bento sure boxed up a well balanced and appetizing team.

  5. Ghost of John OBrien says:

    Dang. Ronaldo made the cut

  6. FSegaud says:

    Can anyone on the east coast make their stay in the US a bit more difficult? Fire alarms, parties at the hotel, loud music, etc….
    :-)

  7. Rooney's Hairpiece says:

    I like that they do not start camp until Wednesday. Most teams are well into their preparations (e.g. USA, Germany, Uruguay). Also, several of Portugal’s players will be late to camp because of the Champions League Final. All of these things are good for the US.

    • QuakerOtis says:

      Right?! This will offset the Ronaldo, because no one on Portugal has ANY experience preparing for high profile matches in a short time-frame…

  8. Nandez says:

    Shame not see Quaresma on the final 23 but man its great for the USMNT

    • little puppet says:

      The idea of having Ronaldo and Quaresma on the wings vs our fragile defense made me cry, thank goodness Quaeresma did not make the 23 (from a U.S fan viewpoint). On the other hand, its a shame Quaresma is missing another world cup, is he that toxic in the locker room?, because his skill cannot be the reason is missing from the final 23…

  9. PD says:

    If anyone wonders why Julian Green and John Brooks are odds on favorites to to to Brasil, consider the club pedigrees of our opposition in this Group of Death. A few years back, I had a very interesting conversation with someone I consider VERY knowledgeable on US soccer. He stated very simply that until we had a lineup that could boast several players starting for top clubs in the world, we needed to scale our own expectations of what the USMNT side could be expected do in a World Cup accordingly. If you disagree with that, consider the fact that there has NEVER been a Cinderella-story champion at the world cup, in it’s entire history. With that in mind, all you need to do is look at the starting XI our opposition represents and compare that to our own to get a real honest sense of our chances in this group. Ghana will be a coin toss, perhaps a slight favorite, but we’re clear underdogs against Portugal and heavy underdogs against Die Mannschaft. Gideon Zelalem should be as important a priority to US soccer as the current camp roster is, because building a future squad around players like him, Green, and Brooks in those kinds of club systems is part of the official grand plan. It doesn’t make me or anyone a Eurosnob to acknowledge that the biggest clubs and most established youth systems in the world are in Spain, Germany, and England (and maybe one or two in Argentina and Brasil). MLS will get there one day, and I’m rooting for every step we take, but the fastest way for us to play catch up is to have USMNT players in systems like Barcelona, Bayern, and Arsenal, not baying for blood if we go three and out this summer..

    • Steve says:

      Clubs don’t make players. Michael Bradley is not a lesser player now than he was 6 months ago at Roma.

      Tim Howard is a better player now than he was at Manchester United.

      Club names don’t play each other, players do. And it matters how well those players work together. That’s why the US beat Portugal in 2002, even though all the Portuguese were all with bigger clubs. If the US beats Portugal this time around, it’ll be for the same reason,

      • Bach's Thumb says:

        Clubs actually do make players to an extent by the seriously simply fact that a player will become a better player if given the opportunity to train against and play with better players.

      • SD says:

        Clubs do make the players…it’s where the players get the day in and day out work to improve….the team that beat Portugal was very talented and VERY young….yes we played well but Portugal underestimated the team as well. after the debacle of 1998 no one expected the US to do well in that group….

      • Gary Page says:

        I think it is leagues that make players. It is the opposition they see week in and week out that improves a player along with self improvement, determinatuion and drive on the part of the individual player.

      • GW says:

        Steve,

        The logical conclusion from your post is that Mikey should have just kept in shape on the playgrounds of Princeton, NJ and he would still be leading the US midfield in Brazil.

        Okay, then this whole MLS thing is a big waste in terms of the USMNT right?

    • USMNT says:

      Is Portugal, Germany and Ghana more talented on paper, player for player then the USA? Yes, Yes, and Not overlly definitive. True, soccer like basketball in the NBA there are no cinderellas. I think that there are tiers of talent by nations and we are still second tier. However, as shown by the USA (and many other teams) on any given match the USA has a chance to win. Should any USA fan expect them to win the group? No. Can we make it out, yes. Will it be thrilling to the point that we can’t take it? Count on it. If you are trying to say that American fans should temper their expectations, I don’t think that a majority of the fans are thinking otherwise.

      That is what made 2002 so special. That truly was an above average USA team, that got a bit lucky (to get Mexico in the knockout round) and a bit unlucky against Germany that I thought we played extremely well and had chances.

      In summary: Relax

    • Carlos says:

      Julian green plays in the 4th division and chances are even that he’s as good as he’ll ever be.

      • Charles says:

        PD, you are among only a few posters here that know what you are talking about. But you will get many detractors,(like Carlos) who have no clue. I hope to see you post more here.

        But when you know your football it is amazing how much you will be attacked here. Like Expat was for instance. I hope he comes back.

        • JayAre says:

          + 1

        • slowleftarm says:

          I think things are better with Expat gone, spending his time leading the Julian Green fan club. We don’t need more eurosnobbery. More people insecure that the USMNT doesn’t have guys who play for “prestigious” clubs.

          I think Green is probably going to be pretty good but we don’t know that. Right now he is a fourth division player.

          Personally, I would rather have had someone like Juan Agudelo in the squad even though he’s played for non-prestigious MLS sides and Utrecht.

          • Karl says:

            We won’t have to worry about that anymore.
            I read an article a couple of weeks ago from a Bayern beat writer where he complains about Pep not doing as much with their youngsters as expected. He specifically mentions Juliam Green as not even being an option for the first team anymore.
            I’ll try to find it and post a link
            My guess is that that’s why expat disyearsapeared from here.

            • GW says:

              So basically Green is injured and doesn’t really play for a while and suddenly his stock has dropped dramatically?

              That’s as ridiculous as the hype going the other way.

              Pep’s stock has dropped because they did not win the Champion’s league and keep their treble crown.

              Green is Pep’s boy so his stock drops with him.

              If they fire Pep then Green’s upward path at Bayern may be slowed, in which case he just needs to move on. I doubt that will be a problem.

              All I know of him is what I saw in the Mexico game. And if he maintains what I saw there and improves on it, which he should theoretically do, he’ll be the best US forward within a year if not sooner.

              • Shawn says:

                Thank you green is on almost already the best winger on the usmnt

              • don Lamb says:

                You have not seen him shoot the ball, make any sort of probing passes, challenge for any aerial balls, or make any runs into dangerous positions off the ball in any sort of big game, but you already know that he will be the best forward for the US within a year. You are crazy and put too much stock in his club jersey.

                He is not a first team player yet. Bayern is bringing him along, but he is a kid with a lot of development in his future before he gets to be where you think he is.

                Take the story of the scout that found Zelalem as a cautionary tale…

              • GW says:

                don,

                “but you already know that he will be the best forward for the US within a year. You are crazy and put too much stock in his club jersey.”

                Actually, I said “if not sooner”.

              • don Lamb says:

                you probably would have said the same thing about Danny Karbassiyoon, who scored on his debut for Arsenal at the age of 18. Ever heard of him? Slow down.

              • GW says:

                don Lamb,

                No need to slow down. We should know soon enough about Green.

            • Charles says:

              Yes Karl, please give us a link to that article by what you said is “a Bayern beat reporter”. I would be very interested in reading it.

              Because it would fly in the face of what is happening right now at Bayern. All for the following world-class attackers have been mentioned of leaving Bayern: Mandzukic, Kroos, Shaqiri and even Mueller. Of course not all 4 will leave but some will.

              Everything today points to the exact opposite of what you reported. So give us the link. Personally I think you are blowing air and telling lies.

              • Increase says:

                Mario is out. Shaqiri wants out.

                Mueller is well….Mueller. He had his best season ever but he might be the kind of player Pep wants and Van Gaal friggen loved him.

                That’s still a lot of movement with big players. I would say Green gets game time next year if for no other reason that Shaqiri is gone.

              • Charles says:

                But it might be even more than that Increase. Maybe Bayern believes that Julian is their future.

                bty Increase, do you believe Karl will post that link?

            • Charles says:

              Well said GW. And very well played. Especially spelling out to don “if not sooner”.

              Yes, I too believe as you do. And I must put in caps your best line about Green

              “WE SHOULD KNOW SOON ENOUGH…..”

          • GW says:

            SLA,

            “We don’t need more eurosnobbery. More people insecure that the USMNT doesn’t have guys who play for “prestigious” clubs.”

            You are barking up the wrong tree. You do a poor job of representing your point of view. I have no idea if you are a xenophobe, a racist or all the other names they call you but you come across as such a person and I doubt you want to. It certainly does not help you get your point across.

            At best you come across as Alexi Lalas lite. And that is not a compliment.

            A lot of the people on this site, with all due respect, don’t know anything about US soccer before the 2010 World Cup, or maybe they forgot. Actually they probably couldn’t care less.

            There are a respectable number of American system products who are” talented enough” to play at the “prestigious” clubs in Europe.

            This has been true for some time. Back in the mid 2000’s Ryan Nelsen, who came here from New Zealand, played at humble Greensboro College in Division 3 for a couple of years, then Stanford , got drafted by DC United . After some standout years with the Black and Red he was signed by Blackburn Rovers and went on to have a very respectable career in the EPL as a very highly regarded defender. He played for New Zealand in the World Cup and did a great job when New Zealand a massive underdog shut down Italy and tied them.

            Now he is Mikey’s manager.

            The same is true for Roger Espinoza a Honduran who came here at 12. Another America system product. (Yavapai College? And Ohio State) he went on to do well with the Sporting KC, and Wigan in the EPL and now the Championship. Maybe he is the guy Bradley should have put next to Mikey.

            And of course there is Stu Holden, late of Clemson and the Dynamo

            None of these guys are native born Americans Two of them, Stu and Roger have US passports.

            All three are unquestionably products of the US system (much as I hate Ohio State), all three have played in the World Cup and, with Stu, and the other two would have done the USMNT proud.

            “Personally, I would rather have had someone like Juan Agudelo in the squad even though he’s played for non-prestigious MLS sides and Utrecht”

            Your bias is showing. Juan was left out on merit. Juan’s problem is he is not consistent. The soccer world is not patient with such players and neither is the US sporting public. Juan needs to grow up and do it fast. He will do that in Europe and maybe not getting called up by JK will be the wakeup call he needs that he never got in MLS.

            The trouble all this is taking too long. The US sporting public demands instant success and every year the World Cup gets harder and harder to play in.

            So your American compatriots are not going to wait around for the American system to produce enough top flight players to make noise in the World Cup.
            The US talent pool is overall much better but so is Mexico’s and all of our rivals. And a significant part of that improvement is the dual nationals. And that is why they are here.

            Whether it is because they play or because they push the guys who play the dual nationals have made the current team significantly better, right away.

            Without their contribution this team might not do as well as the 2010 team.
            After all the spine of the team, Jozy, Clint ,Mikey and Timmy, did all their significant development in Europe and might as well be dual nationals.
            Ryan, and Stu pretty much transitioned seamlessly to Europe while Roger took a bit longer but not that much longer.

            Jozy, Clint, Mikey and Timmy have grown dramatically in Europe to the point where I don’t think you can say that the level they all have attained is one they would have gotten to had they stayed in America.

            So maybe you were willing to wait but I doubt most of the US public was. And the dual nationals whether you like it or not are here now and have been here a long time actually, to jump start that process.

            • Increase says:

              I wish Roger played for the US. He plays on the left if I remember correctly. He would fix soooo many issues we currently have over there.

              On Juan, he just isn’t quite there yet. His Utrecht goal record isn’t amazing.(Being on Loan doesn’t help.) But I don’t think he has done anything to be called up and he plays in a crowded position.

          • Sharkbait says:

            Can we all agree to ditch the “fourth division player” description? While factually correct it can be misleading and frankly a bit condescending. Bayern Munich II plays in the 4th division because that’s how Germany’s system is set up. If Green was on a comparably big club like say Real Madrid or Barcelona he’d be a “second division player” since that’s where their B teams play in Spain. And then nobody would use that line against him because it wouldn’t have near the same effect.

        • slowleftarm says:

          I think the trouble is you guys define “knowing your football” as being a pure eurosnob. People on this site aren’t into this pretentious approach to following soccer. You’re more concerned with whether the USMNT can have someone in the squad with (Bayern Munich) next to his name.

          • Drewbles says:

            You seem to think that club affiliation has no correlation to talent level, and I can’t even fathom why you would think that.

          • Increase says:

            This may sound odd slow but I would be very happy if the USMNT had someone like Andre Schurrle. Someone not really a starter but comes on to get a specific task done and does it well. We don’t have anyone like that on the US.(Clint did it at Spurs)

            It’s kinda what we all hoped Brek Shea would be.

    • slowleftarm says:

      I think your friend has it backwards. Until we start producing elite players who, because they are elite, will play for the best clubs in the world, we aren’t going to really progress. Plus you mention Brooks, Green and Zelalem but Brooks plays for Hertha Berlin, not exactly a giant club and while Green and Zelalem play for big clubs, they are reserve/youth team players at the moment.

      If we can build MLS into one of the top leagues in the world, then we won’t need to worry about this as much. I think we’re getting closer to that day.

      • JayAre says:

        You and PD are both right. What we need to do is flood the market with talent like Germany and all the other top teams. Every MLS team needs to produce at least 1 top talent every 2-3 years. Thats why we are the best at basketball we flood the market with the best talent. Right now we are still like Nigeria’s Olympic basketball team. They were filled with a bunch of talented America/Nigerian players who couldn’t make the cut for US and right now thats truly all that guys like Johnson, Chandler, and Jones are.

        • Shawn says:

          Well that is abit harsh have you’ve seen Nigeria in the Olympics there horrible

          • JayAre says:

            Ok I’ll admit that was a harsh comparison but you get where I’m coming from.

            • outtahere says:

              You can’t compare basketball and soccer internationally. Soccer is far, far more competitive. In basketball there is a massive drop off in talent after the first few teams and even still USA is way, way dominant. Nobody dominates soccer like that because it is the main sport in so many countries.

    • Snack Time says:

      Germany in 1954 is a cinderella story of a World Cup winner. Just sayin’.

      • Increase says:

        True, it helps that the WC was soooo much shorter in those games. 7 games doesn’t sound like much but I swear it was only 4 back in the day.

    • Gary Page says:

      I think it is leagues that make players. It is the opposition they see week in and week out that improves a player along with self improvement, determination and drive on the part of the individual player.

    • Gary Page says:

      Any evaluation of the US national team development should involve the historical context. We are a relatively new entrant onto the international scene and have had a domestic league for less than 20 years. You don’t build a strong pool of international players over night. The US is getting relatively stronger every cycle and should continue to do so. Remember that right now Germany is ranked #2 and Portugal #3 in the world. To get out of this group could be the greatest accomplishment in history for US soccer.

      • Increase says:

        I really hate the term Eurosnob. The MLS kinda sucks sometimes… lets be honest. It’s not that there aren’t good players… its that there is a ton of below average filler floating around and it makes it very hard to estimate a player’s value for the National team.

        Look how good Henry makes Bradley Wright-Phillips and scoring on Leonardo is hardly an accomplishment.

        These are the reasons that Jurgen and fans like me want guys in Europe because we can see how they line up against the best. Only time, money and experience can make the MLS better. It’s just like growing up. There is no way to speed up the process.

  10. Steve says:

    7 Strikers!?! Of course, a couple are actually wide midfielders. But that stood out to me.

  11. nato says:

    i’d hate to be a striker for Portugal. None of them ever score. Ronaldo (a winger) hoags all the limelight.

    no wonder their individual stats are piss poor

  12. USMNT says:

    Is it just me or is it weird that Portugals camp is in the USA? I would think you would stay in your home country to be more comfortable.

    • quozzel says:

      Time zone.

      The European-based teams are very aware of how badly they’re going to be jet-lagged unless they get acclimated. The USA is in the right time zone…and we’ve got a bumper crop of good facilities and good accomodations that keeps them from dealing with the realities on the ground in Brazil any longer than they have to.

      • Drewbles says:

        The majority of Brazil is two hours ahead of the US, and three hours behind Portugal. Guess you think that 1 hour is going to make a huge difference?

        I think a more likely reason would be to avoid any press and fan insanity they would encounter in their home country. Come to the US, be comparatively anonymous, and focus on training.

    • ZTom says:

      “”Is it just me or is it weird that Portugals camp is in the USA?””

      Portugal wanted to get into the whole third world vibe thing that they will experience in Brazil.

  13. ZTom says:

    “”Is it just me or is it weird that Portugals camp is in the USA?””

    They wanted to get into the whole third world vibe that they will experience in Brazil. What a better way than an urban jungle in the USA?

  14. Turd Bradley says:

    Portugal 5 USA 0

  15. JB says:

    Unimpressed.

  16. MLS_Soccer_Talker says:

    Damn. Ronaldo got picked

  17. Portuguese says:

    I don’t like this squad. I feel like Quaresma was a good choice as he played more games than Nani this season.