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Everton midfielder Andre Gomes has returned to the national team as one of five changes made to the squad by Portugal coach Fernando Santos for the UEFA Nations League games against Italy and Poland.
Gomes has not featured for A Selecao since a World Cup qualifier in March but has started in Everton’s last three league games since recovering from a muscular injury.
Portugal travel to Milan to face Italy on Nov. 17 before facing Poland in Guimaraes three days later, still without Cristiano Ronaldo.
The captain and national team’s all-time leading scorer is absent by mutual consent and is expected to be recalled next year.
“The only thing I think about Ronaldo is that he should win the Golden Ball,” Santos said in Thursday’s news conference.
Ronaldo — who has scored seven goals and set up five others in 11 Serie A starts for Juventus and scored his first Champions League goal for them in Wednesday’s 2-1 loss to former club Manchester United — has not featured for the
national team since Portugal’s
round of 16 World Cup defeat
to Uruguay.