TugaScout is an English-language site reporting on matters associated with Portuguese football by freelance writer Alex Goncalves, offering the latest news, reviews and opinions surrounding the Portuguese League and the Seleção players based abroad.

Rui Patricio set to become the most capped Portuguese goalkeeper in history

Rui Patricio is on the cusp of earning the title of stand-alone most capped Portuguese goalkeeper in the history of the national team.

Patricio, 31, has played for Portugal 80 times having made his debut in 2010 in a 4-0 friendly victory over Spain.

Porto legend Vitor Baia is currently the most capped goalkeeper Portugal have ever had, having also represented his country 80 times between 1990 and 2002, but is set to be overtaken by Patricio when he takes on The Netherlands on Sunday, making the Wolves shot-stopper the outright most capped goalkeeper.

Speaking prior to the match, Patricio said “I am very proud to reach that mark, the goalkeeper with the most games. It is always good to play for Portugal but the most important thing is tomorrow’s game and the possibility of winning a trophy in Portugal.”

“That represents a good motivation for all of us.”

On the match itself, Patricio said: “We are going to play against a great team. It is going to be a great game. We work every day to play against the best players in the world.”

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“We are very lucky to have Cristiano. He is here to win.”

Fernando Santos also made comments on Portugal’s talisman Ronaldo, remarking: “I’m not surprised [about his hattrick] - I was only surprised when he was my player when he was 19 years old and doing this. I shouldn’t have played him against Manchester United because, after that game, I lost him!”

“It’s not normal for a 34-year old player to score so many goals. But I think he’ll keep doing that for 3 or 4 more years.”

In terms of the Dutch players, Daley Blind said “We are playing against Portugal, we are not playing against Ronaldo”, while Wijnaldum took a rather different opinion, stating “It is going to be difficult to stop Ronaldo.”

Ronald Koeman was then asked if he had a plan to stop Ronaldo, to which he replied “No.”

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