Liverpool striker Diogo Jota was sent home injured and will therefore miss Portugal’s Group A World Cup qualifier against Luxembourg.
Jota scored the third goal in his last game for his country in their 3-0 win over Azerbaijan last week, but Portugal head coach Fernando Santos is reinforced by the return of Cristiano Ronaldo.
The 24-year-old got off to a good start to the season with Liverpool, scoring three goals in seven Premier League games, only behind Mohamed Salah (six) and Sadio Mane (four) in the competition for the Reds.
Jota has fired fewer shots than his fellow strikers in the Premier League, posting only 18 versus Salahs 28 and Manes 26, but the Portugal international has the trio’s second-highest shot conversion rate at 16.67 percent, behind Salahs 21.43 percent.
It is unclear what the type of Jota’s injury is and how long he will be out. Liverpool’s next game will be against Watford on October 16, while three days later a trip to Atletico Madrid in the Champions League is due.
In Jota’s absence, Brazil striker Roberto Firmino could return to the starting XI. The 30-year-old, who scored in the Reds’ first game of the season against Norwich City, had just one start and two shots on goal in the Premier League this season.
With a win by Ronaldo and Co. with four game days to go, Portugal would have two points ahead of Serbia at the top of their qualifying group.
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– Portugal (@selecaoportugal) October 12, 2021