Ronaldo included on Mart?nez’s first squad for Portugal


LISBON, Portugal: New Portugal coach Roberto Mart?nez included Cristiano Ronaldo in his first squad on Friday since taking over from Fernando Santos following the World Cup.The 38-year-old Ronaldo was left out of Santos’ starting lineup for Portugal’s knockout-phase games at the tournament in Qatar, including the quarterfinal loss to Morocco.Ronaldo, who plays for Saudi team Al-Nassr, can add to his international record 118 goals when Portugal plays European Championship qualifiers against Liechtenstein on March 23 and at Luxembourg three days later.”Cristiano Ronaldo is a player who is completely committed to the national team,” Mart?nez said. “I don’t look at age or other aspects. He has the chance to help the team and pass on his experience to other players.”Mart?nez made very few changes to the squad he inherited from Santos. Pepe, aged 40, was back again in defense, while Ronaldo was joined by Jo?o F?lix, Bruno Fernandes and Bernardo Silva as playmakers.Mart?nez joined Portugal after the Spaniard ended his six-year stint with Belgium following the team’s disappointing group-stage elimination at the World Cup.Portugal’s Euro 2024 qualifying group also includes Iceland, Slovakia and Bosnia-Herzegovina.

Portugal:Goalkeepers: Diogo Costa (Porto), Jos? S? (Wolverhampton), Rui Patr?cio (Roma).Defenders: Diogo Dalot (Manchester United), Jo?o Cancelo (Bayern Munich), Danilo Pereira (Paris Saint-Germain), Pepe (Porto), R?ben Dias (Manchester City), Ant?nio Silva (Benfica), Gon?alo In?cio (Sporting), Diogo Leite (Union Berlin), Nuno Mendes (Paris Saint-Germain), Raphael Guerreiro (Borussia Dortmund).Midfielders: Jo?o Palhinha (Fulham), R?ben Neves (Wolverhampton), Bernardo Silva (Manchester City), Bruno Fernandes (Manchester United), Jo?o M?rio (Benfica), Matheus Nunes (Wolverhampton), Ot?vio Monteiro (Porto), Vitinha (Paris Saint-Germain).Forwards: Cristiano Ronaldo (Al-Nassr), Gon?alo Ramos (Benfica), Jo?o F?lix (Chelsea), Rafael Le?o (AC Milan), Diogo Jota (Liverpool).