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Okay, we have less than 2 months till the World Cup and almost a month from now, Oliveira will announce the final 23. I know we keep beating this like a dead horse, but I think we can now narrow the field of contenders down to 37 players. Oliveira himself has stated before in the press that there is essentially a working list of 35-40 players, so I don't think I'm that far off with my theory. Here goes (I've highlighted the players who I feel are unquestionable locks):

GK: Ricardo, Vitor Baia, Nelson, Quim, Nuno

Fullbacks: Frechaut, Rui Jorge, Mario Silva

Central Defenders: Fern. Couto, J. Costa, J. Andrade, Litos

"Utility" defenders: Abel Xavier, Caneira, Fernando Meira, Beto

Defensive Mids: Petit, Paulo Sousa, Vidigal, Paulo Bento, Rui Bento, Costinha

Left/Right Wings: Figo, S. Conceicao, Capucho, Dani, Quaresma, Pedro Barbosa

Attacking Mids: Rui Costa, Hugo Viana, Bino

Strikers: JVP, Pauleta, Nuno Gomes, Boa Morte, Joao Tomas, Helder Postiga


I seriously doubt, nor can I think of, any player not listed above that could break through at this late stage in the game. With the exception of 3 players, they have all been called once before by Oliveira. The 3 uncalled players are Nuno, Quaresma, and Postiga. I included Nuno because our GK situation is tedious; Quaresma was on stand-by for the Spain game in Feb. and is also a logical replacement for Simao; and I included Postiga because we simply have no depth at forward. However, I don't think any of the 3 will make the final cut.
 

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We're weak in goal. I see Quim's name keep coming up, but is he suspended or not? If Baia has even one more injury, I think he should be left out. He's my favourite Port. Goalkeeper - the guy was a hero at Euro 2000 - but these days he seems just too risky.
 
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