As the summer transfer window dust begins to settle, European teams can finally nestle into their seasons with their filled out rosters. With 16 of the 23 members who made up Portugal’s Confederations Cup squad playing their trade outside of Portugal, it is imperative that the Portuguese abroad have a strong season as the team prepares for the World Cup next summer. For this second installment, Portuguese playing in England will be highlighted. To see an updated list of all Portuguese players playing abroad, visit out Portuguese Players Abroad page.
Europe’s most high profile league only boasted four prominent Portuguese competitors at the start of the season. But a bundle of deadline day deals brought more Portuguese to play in England. One of the most interesting has to be Renato Sanches being loaned to Swansea City for the season from Bayern Munich.
It was a blustery stay in Munich for Sanches, having been bought by the German champions for a huge sum. He only started for Munich nine times, and only completed an entire 90 minutes just twice. It was a tough task for him, however, as cracking that talented midfield was always going to be challenging. Swansea is not as high profile as he may have hoped, but it could be the perfect fit for the promising twenty year old. He should register a lot of minutes in a highly competitive league. It could be the move that spurs Renato into the inspirational midfielder he has the potential to be.
The strange saga that was the Adrien Silva transfer to Leicester City was one that ended days after the transfer deadline. It seems as if the transfer was listed only seconds too late, and FIFA will not sanction the move until January. With still many questions about what Adrien will do between now and then, but it is easy to feel for him. Not getting top level playing time anywhere in Europe could be a big blow to his World Cup form. Still, look for him to feature in January for the club.
Manchester City’s new acquisition Bernardo Silva surely headlines the Portuguese collection in England. A prolific midfielder, Silva is one of the most promising playmakers in European football. Conceivably the brightest player in France last season, Silva could become the most dynamic player that Portugal has produced since Rui Costa. Under the tutelage of Pep Guardiola, Silva is well positioned to gain international acclaim in Manchester.
Portugal’s other starlet in England is Southampton’s Cédric Soares. His time at has been characterized by tremendous consistency, and improvement. Not only has he prospered in his defensive ability but is also one of the most dangerous outside backs in the league in the offensive zone. His ability to get forward, combined with his positional and strategic sense makes him one of the most prized assets in a very talented league.
The two veterans that round off the players abroad in England are West Ham’s José Fonte and Chelsea’s third strike goalkeeper Eduardo. Both in the twilight of their career, Fonte and Eduardo may struggle to gain a lot of time on the pitch this season.