July 10, 2016 is a date scorched into the memory of anyone who has ever admired Portugal and its football. As Eder ran toward the bench with his fists clenched, the worldwide Portuguese community went into uproar. This week is the anniversary of that hallowed night in Paris. Also, this week is exactly one year out until the World Cup semi-finals in Russia. While the hearts of many Seleção fans are hoping to be gathering together in a year’s time for another penultimate match, our minds know there is still plenty of work to be done. With a massive contest against Switzerland looming, nothing is certain. Still, it is hard to picture this talented side at home next summer and not competing for the world title. With Fernando Santos to most certainly still be at the helm, let us look at how we might line up in Russia. While there are still many kinks for Santos to work out in the next 11 months, I still expect him to employ a 4-1-3-2 type of formation. Continue reading
This summer’s Confederations Cup confirmed what Portuguese football fans had hoped for some time: Portugal finally has a quality striker. In André Silva, Portugal has an intelligent, skillful player with maturity well beyond his young age. Skilled both in the air and with the ball at his feet, André Silva’s presence on the field clearly improves the Seleção’s play, and helps ease the goal-scoring burden from Cristiano Ronaldo.
After a successful debut 2016/2017 season at FC Porto, Silva made a big-money move to Italian giants AC Milan, a team in the midst of a massive squad overhaul. While it is exciting to see a young Portuguese prospect the subject of a monumental move to a major European team, the question always arises: Is it too soon? In this article, I will compare André Silva’s career trajectory to that of another young, promising Portuguese, Porto-bred striker in recent history: Hélder Postiga. Continue reading
With the Seleção’s surprise triumph this summer still fresh in the football world’s mind, Fernando Santos will soon begin preparations to move the team forward. To begin this transition, Portugal will play two games in early September. First, the team will face Gibraltar on September 1st in the first ever meetings between the two nations. Five days later, Switzerland and Portugal will kick off both teams’ 2018 World Cup qualification campaigns. Santos will likely choose a much different squad than what was selected for the European Championship. Post-tournament friendlies are typically used as a means for experimentation and as such typically involve new players, but Santos will have to balance experimentation with results. While the result of the Gibraltar match is inconsequential, Santos will surely be looking to get a win against Switzerland, who are on paper Portugal’s most difficult opponents in their qualification group. Here’s a list of who I would argue deserves to be selected by Santos. Continue reading
The editors of PortugalFutbol.net and FutebolFactory.com are proud to announce our annual list of 10 players to watch this season. After much deliberation, we whittled down the pool of talented domestic players to ten, but couldn’t help but add some honorable mentions. These are players who we believe have a realistic shot at making it to the senior Portuguese National Team by the end of the season. So, without further ado, here’s the 2016/2017 edition of “10 Players Who Can Break Out This Season.” Continue reading
In a sensational move, Bayern Munich today announced their capture Benfica’s 18 year old standout Renato Sanches, despite well documented interest abroad. Manchester United and Manchester City have made their interest in Sanches clear over the past months, but Bayern have swooped in to secure his signature for an up-front fee of €35 million, with the possibility of add-ons raising the fee further. A move for Sanches seemed on the cards, but few expected that one would be finalized before summer arrived. Continue reading
The Benfica-Porto rivalry is one that needs little introduction in the footballing world. Two of the country’s powerhouses over the past decade, Benfica and Porto have lately gone neck and neck for the Liga title. The fixture between the two is one to behold, and one that Mike Martyns can give us a glimpse into.
Today, in Benfica’s 2-1 come-from-behind win at Estoril, Pizzi scored what proved to be the winner for the Lisbon giants. This goal comes during a tumultuous season for Pizzi, in which poor form in the early stages of the season lost him his starting spot in the team to the young, promising Gonçalo Guedes. Lately, however, Pizzi has earned back his starting berth with a series of incisive displays for Benfica. His goal today leaves me wondering if he should be considered for inclusion on Portugal’s Euro 2016 squad this summer. Continue reading
With the U-21’s impressive performance at the U-21 Euro now in the past, the team’s focus now shifts to qualification for the next edition of the tournament. With this shift is also a shift in personnel. Head coach Rui Jorge named a squad of 23 today for the team’s upcoming qualification match against Albania, to be played on September 8th. Continue reading
Fernando Santos announced today a squad of 24 to face France in a friendly on September 4th and Albania in a Euro 2016 qualifier on September 7th. Bernardo Silva and Joao Mario, who both starred for Portugal at this summer’s U-21 Euro, have rightfully earned places in the team, as well as Porto new-boys Andre Andre and Danilo Pereira, who have been named for the second successive squad. Dinamo Kiev’s Miguel Veloso, who has been out of the national team setup for some time, also earned a call as a result of some solid recent performances in Ukraine. Continue reading
On Friday, Fernando Santos will name the Portugal squad to face France on September 4th (international friendly) and Albania on September 7th (Euro 2016 Qualification). With both the U-21’s strong showing at the U-21 Euro and the U-20 team’s impressive run at the U-20 World Cup this summer, the Portuguese National Team are in transition. With young prospects such as Bernardo Silva, João Mário, and Ivan Cavaleiro now becoming integral parts of their club teams, will Fernando Santos begin to ween them into the national team setup? Will they become stalwarts of the Seleção, or will Santos favor older, more experienced players? These questions highlight the conundrum that Portuguese football is facing; one of how to go about this transition. Continue reading