Portugal lose Lopes to injury

Portugal have suffered a blow ahead of their UEFA European Women's Under-19 Championship opener against Turkey after losing defender Catarina Lopes to injury.

José Paisana remained upbeat despite losing Catarina Lopes to injury
José Paisana remained upbeat despite losing Catarina Lopes to injury ©Sportsfile

Despite losing defender Catarina Lopes to an injury suffered in their final training session before travelling to Antalya, Portugal coach José Paisana focused on the positives ahead of his side's UEFA European Women's Under-19 Championship opener against Turkey.

Lopes has been replaced by midfielder Joana Carneiro, who made six appearances during qualification. "Catarina was an out-and-out central defender, but rather than calling up another centre-back to replace her, we've brought in Joana who's a central midfielder, which we think gives us more flexibility within the squad," said Paisana.

"Joana was already in the squad previously but she picked up a minor muscular injury, lost a bit of sharpness and her performances dropped, but she's fully recovered now and back to her best."