Portugal U-21 coach Paulo Bento announced a squad of 23 for the team’s upcoming games against Norway and Poland. The team is slated to begin their qualification campaign for the 2015 UEFA U-21 Euro on September 5, when they host Norway. The U-21s have not qualified for a U-21 Euro since 2007. Most notably, the team came close to qualifying for the last Euro, only to draw their last game against Poland, when a win could have guaranteed them a place at the finals. This time around, Portugal are in Group 8, which is comprised of Azerbaijan, Macedonia, Norway, and Israel. The group seems an easy one, and Rui Jorge and the team certainly have something to prove, after he successive failures of the past six years. Five days after the game against Norway, Portugal hosts Poland in a friendly match.
One notable inclusion in the squad is Elton Monteiro, who is uncapped at the U-21 level. Monteiro recently made the move from Arsenal, where he appeared for the reserves, to Club Brugge in Belgium. Below is the entire squad list:
Goalkeepers: Daniel Fernandes (Osnabruck), José Sá (Marítimo), Luís Ribeiro (Sporting)
Defenders: Elton Monteiro (Club Brugge), Josué (Vitória Guimaraes), João Amorim (Vitória Guimaraes), Luís Martins (Gil Vicente), Paulo Oliveira (Vitória Guimaraes), Raphael Guerreiro (Lorient), Tiago Ferreira (Porto B)
Midfielders: André Gomes (Benfica), Tózé (FC Porto B), João Mário (Sporting B), Luís Gustavo (Rio Ave), Rafa (Braga), Sérgio Oliveira (Paços Ferreira), Tiago Silva (Belenenses), William (Sporting)
Forwards: Betinho (Sporting B), Ivan Cavaleiro (Benfica B), Lucas João (Nacional), Ricardo Pereira (Porto B), Ricardo Esgaio (Sporting B)