GOOD EVENING FROM PORTUGAL
Welcome to our live coverage of the 2022 World Cup qualifier between Portugal and the Republic of Ireland at the Estadio Algarve.
Fernando Santos’ men are looking to seal qualification to the tournament’s finals in Qatar as soon as possible following a rather hapless Euro 2020 campaign.
Santos, though, will be without Leicester ace Ricardo Pereira, who suffered a hamstring injury at the weekend during the Foxes’ victory at Norwich.
Real Betis’ William Carvalho, Atletico Madrid’s Joao Felix as well as Lille’s Renato Sanches and Jose Fonte are also not part of the squad.
However, Portugal captain Cristiano Ronaldo is set to start in what will mark his first ever match since his return to Manchester United from Juventus.
Ireland manager Stephen Kenny, on the other hand, will be missing Celtic’s James McCarthy and former Burnley ace Robbie Brady.
West Ham goalkeeper Darren Randolph has also been left out, which means Kenny will have to choose between Manchester City loanee Gavin Bazunu, Bournemouth’s Mark Travers and Liverpool’s Caoimhin Kelleher to start between the sticks.
The Boys in Green, though, have welcomed uncapped defenders Nathan Collins and Andrew Omobamidele, from Burnley and Norwich respectively, to the team for the first time