Euro 2024 Profiles: Portugal - Can the 2016 Champions Send Cristiano Off in Style?

Gigi Buffon displaying the note for Portugal's qualification to Euro 2024 group stage, without celebration
Matt Biggin
Matt Biggin

published 16:41, 03 March 2024

Portugal will enter Euro 2024 somewhat under the radar, but that’s the way they’ve always liked it. The 2016 champions have finished at least 3rd in all but three of the European Championships they have qualified for. They finished runners-up in 2004, on home soil, and won the UEFA Nations League in 2019. With a current FIFA World Ranking of 7th, they are always capable of causing any side problems. 


The Manager


The Portuguese will head into their Euro campaign under the watchful eye of former Belgium and Everton manager Roberto Martinez. The Spaniard shocked the world in 2013 when he won the FA Cup with Wigan Athletic, before moving to Merseyside, and eventually progressing to the international stage with underachievers Belgium. Martinez has only managed 10 games for Portugal since taking charge on 9th January 2023, but he does boast a 100% record.


Martinez will be hungry to prove himself on the international scene, following a disappointing 3rd placed finish with Belgium in the 2018 World Cup. And whilst he, and his side, will be far from favourites, he certainly has enough talent at his disposal to flex his attacking style of football, and to possibly cause an upset in the meanwhile too. 


The Players

Portugal have a squad packed full of talent and experience, with legendary 39-year-old striker Cristiano Ronaldo leading the line, in what is sure to be his final major international tournament.

There is additional experience in the form of Manchester City’s Bernardo Silva and Manchester United’s Bruno Fernandes. Whilst there are exciting young players too – namely Antonio Silva and Tiago Tomás.

Antonio Silva

Antonio Silva is, without question, the rising star of the Portuguese National Team, with the Benfica centre back adding some much-needed steel and physicality to the side.

Known for his leadership skills and maturity on the pitch, he is comfortable with the ball at his feet, and possesses excellent tactical intelligence. Since breaking into the Benfica first team last season, Silva has played 77 games for The Eagles, winning a league title and Super Cup, as well as winning the 2021-22 UEFA Youth League with Benfica’s youth side.

With transfer interest from Bayern Munich and Manchester United, this could be the tournament Silva comes of age as a global superstar.

Tiago Tomás

21-year-old Tiago Tomás plays as a forward for Bundesliga side VfL Wolfsburg, whom he joined from Sporting CP in July 2023.

He has shown a lot of promise in Germany, and his pace, flair, agility, and eye for goal could make him a crucial part of the Portugal squad across this tournament. One to watch, Tomás looks set to be one of the rising young talents set to dominate Euro 2024

Whilst it is unlikely Portugal will win their second European Championships, or even make the final, there is every chance they could enjoy a strong run, and go deep into the tournament.

They might even secure a scalp or two along the way; one thing is for sure, Portugal add a much-needed x-factor into the tournament.

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