Roberto Martinez names Cristiano Ronaldo captain as he announced his first Portugal squad after leaving Belgium for the Euro 2024 qualifier. The Spanish manager joined Os Navegadores after ending his tenure as the Belgian coach post the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar. The World Cup wasn’t great for the Red Devils as they suffered a humiliating group-stage exit.
Similarly, Portugal also had a disappointing end to their campaign after suffering a gruelling 1-0 loss against Morrocoo in the Quarterfinals of the World Cup. Now Os Navegadores will be taking on Liechtenstein on March 23 and Luxembourg three days later.
Talking about the inclusion of the Al-Nassr forward, Martinez stated that he doesn’t look at the age of a player and rather focuses on his impact and ability. The former Wigan Athletic manager also talked about how Ronaldo can use this opportunity to help young players develop into seasoned campaigners for the team.
"Cristiano Ronaldo is a player who is very committed to the national team," Martinez said. "A player like Cristiano brings experience, he is an important figure in the team. I don't look at age or other aspects. I think Cristiano has an opportunity to help the team and transmit the experience of his career to the other players. This step is important for the players who are here. We want to make a winning team, a competitive team."
Portugal Squad for Euro 2024 Qualifiers:
Goalkeepers: Diogo Costa, Jose Sa, Rui Patricio
Defenders: Antonio Silva, Danilo Pereira, Diogo Liete, Goncalo Inacio, Joao Cancelo, Diogo Dalot, Pepe, Nuno Mendes, Raphael Guerreiro, Ruben Dias
Midfielders: Bruno Fernandes, Joao Palhinha, Joao Mario, Matheus Nunes, Otavio, Ruben Neves, Vitinha, Bernardo Silva
Forwards: Cristiano Ronaldo, Diogo Jota, Goncalo Ramos, Joao Felix, Rafael Leao