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Five things to know about Luxembourg-Portugal

The Roude Léiw will face Cristiano Ronaldo and his team on Tuesday in the 2022 World Cup qualifiers. A meeting that promises to be very special on many points. Explanations.

The Roude Léiw will face Cristiano Ronaldo and his team on Tuesday in the 2022 World Cup qualifiers. A meeting that promises to be very special on many points. Explanations.

(ASdN with Bob Hemmen) – Three days after the 1-0 victory over Ireland, a whole new challenge awaits the national football team. On Tuesday evening, the eleven Luxembourgish will face Portugal at the Josy-Barthel stadium as part of the qualifiers for the 2022 World Cup. Here are five facts to know about this highly anticipated meeting.

Luc Holtz will be on the sidelines for the 100th time in an international match on Tuesday. The coach of Roude Léiw, in office since 2010, is part of the closed club of coaches with the greatest longevity. Indeed, only Andorran Koldo Alvarez remained in post longer. The latter was hired six months before Luc Holtz, in February 2010.


The FLF coach has been in post since 2010.

The FLF coach has been in post since 2010.

Photo: Yann Hellers

Although the match was initially to be played at the Stade de Luxembourg, the works could not be completed in time. The meeting will therefore take place at the Josy-Barthel stadium. An unforeseen event that does not fail to annoy Luc Holtz. “We have a world footballer (Cristiano Ronaldo, editor’s note) here and we unfortunately missed the opportunity to inaugurate the new stadium,” laments the coach of the Luxembourg selection.

Whatever the location, however, the stands will remain empty. The closed door is still essential because of the health pandemic whether for this international meeting or the national championships.

On Saturday, Cristiano Ronaldo threw his captain’s armband to the ground in protest when his goal against Serbia (2-2) had just been refused. While his gesture has sparked much discussion around the 36-year-old, the Portuguese side are said to be more concerned about Bruno Fernandes.

Indeed, the Manchester United player should remain on the bench on Tuesday because of a yellow card. “Almost all the players have exceptional qualities,” nevertheless emphasizes Luc Holtz.

After the 1-0 victory against Ireland, the Luxembourg coach will play his card again by sending the same eleven players onto the pitch to face Portugal. Mica Pinto, injured in the match against Qatar last Wednesday, could nevertheless make a comeback. If recovered, the 27-year-old could move into a left midfielder to provide additional cover.

On the defense side, no change should be put in place, Luxembourg having conceded no goal on Saturday against Ireland. During this meeting, Enes Mahmutovic took the place of Lars Gerson. “I have not had an in-depth conversation with Lars since, but given his behavior, I think he supported the decision well,” said Luc Holtz, recalling that the player has been injured for a long time and has played little since .

For Leandro Barreiro and many of his teammates, the meeting that awaits them on Tuesday night against Portugal (8:45 p.m.) is not an ordinary match. Indeed, the parents of the 21-year-old are from Angola and have lived in Portugal for years. Against this team, “you have to be focused from the first minute,” said the midfielder before adding that “we cannot afford to make mistakes. Portugal will be aggressive and will want to win at all costs ”.


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