The Portuguese media (via GetFootball.eu) have announced Portugal’s 55-man preliminary squad list for the World Cup this November, with three Arsenal players included.
In the list of defenders, both Cedric Soares and Nuno Tavares feature, whilst Fabio Vieira makes the midfield list. But there’s no point getting excited about seeing the trio featuring at the tournament yet.
That list of 55 will be cut down to 26 for the actual event, meaning more than half of the players will drop out before then.
Cedric’s last appearance in a Portugal squad was in March, and his last appearance was in March 2021. With zero appearances for Arsenal this season, it’s unlikely he’ll convince his national team to recall him for the World Cup.
Vieira has never made a first-team appearance for Portugal, though he’s been a regular for their u21s, so they know all about him. Again, the problem is that he’s featuring relatively infrequently for Arsenal so far.
Perhaps Tavares has the best shot at a call-up, given the regular football he’s playing for Marseille. Once again, he’s never made a senior appearance for Portugal before, but he was an u21 regular up until recently.
Tavares has started 13 of Marseille’s 16 games this season in all competitions, coming off the bench in two more and scoring three goals.
But with young PSG talent Nuno Mendes and the experienced Pablo Rui ahead of him at left-back, in addition to Manchester City’s Joao Cancelo for cover (usually used at right-back for Portugal), even Tavares is a major long shot.
It would take an explosive run of form in the final few weeks to earn a World Cup spot. All this preliminary list means is that it’s not impossible for any of them yet.