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Preview: Poland v Portugal

The quarter-finals start in Marseille, with Poland coach Adam Nawałka unsurprised his team have made it so far. Portugal's Fernando Santos, meanwhile, is readying his side for a "strategic" test.

Preview: Poland v Portugal
Preview: Poland v Portugal ©AFP/Getty Images
  • Poland and Portugal meet in first quarter-final in Marseille; winner plays Wales or Belgium
  • Poland had never won a finals match (in six attempts) before UEFA EURO 2016
  • Poland striker Robert Lewandowski without a goal in seven internationals
  • Portugal coach Fernando Santos describes game as "50-50"
  • Portugal's last five EURO finals fixtures have ended in draws after 90 minutes

Possible line-ups
Poland: Fabiański; Piszczek, Glik, Pazdan, Jędrzejczyk; Błaszczykowski, Krychowiak, Mączyński, Grosicki; Milik, Lewandowski.
Misses next match if booked: Grosicki, Mączyński, Peszko, Piszczek, Pazdan, Jędrzejczyk

Portugal: Rui Patrício, Cédric, Fonte, Pepe, Guerreiro; Silva, William Carvalho, Sanches, Mário; Nani, Ronaldo.
Misses next match if booked: William Carvalho, Pepe, Quaresma

Coach quotes
Adam Nawałka, Poland coach
I think we have proved what we're capable of but let's wait until the match. We know our strengths and that we are capable of going through. It's no surprise that we've got results at this tournament. We've been making good progress and we expect to deliver a high level of football.

Poland's path to the last eight

Portugal are a team with great potential who like to attack, but they can also defend. What's very clear is that when they recover possession, they are very dangerous on the counterattack. We're expecting a difficult match but we want to control it according to our own game plan.

Robert Lewandowski is a very important player. He's performing a very important role as a captain. He's in very good physical and mental shape and is doing a great job for us.

Thrills and spills: Portugal's campaign so far

Fernando Santos, Portugal coach
We [Greece] faced Poland in the opening game four years ago and I remember it quite clearly. But tomorrow's match has nothing to do with the 2012 one. My counterpart believes Poland will go through; I believe we will go through. There are no favourites – it's 50-50.

Everybody is talking about Cristiano Ronaldo and there's a reason for that – he's an amazing player. There are hundreds of players here we don't talk about every day, but it's normal to talk about players like Ronaldo or Lewandowski. Ronaldo knows how to deal with that.

It's going to be a balanced game, although I don't think Poland resemble any team we've played so far. They're a very strategic team. They go from defence to attack very quickly and you can tell a lot of work has been done behind the scenes. When we have the ball ourselves, we'll try and take advantage of their weak points.

Who should you pick in your Fantasy Football team?

UEFA.com team reporters
Piotr Koźmiński, Poland (@UEFAcomPiotrK)
This campaign has been met with euphoria in Poland: this is uncharted territory. The players are visibly lifted, the atmosphere around the squad is fantastic and there is a sense that all the pressure is on Portugal. Nawałka's defence has been superb in France, and if the front line clicks everything could fall into place. The big question mark is freshness. Poland flagged against Switzerland but the Swiss had a couple of days more rest in them. That won't be an issue this time.

Joe Walker, Portugal (@UEFAcomJoeW)
After a terrific rearguard performance against Croatia, expect Santos to stick with more or less the same side in his preferred 4-4-2 diamond set-up. Super-sub Renato Sanches is in line for his first start of the competition after impressing from the bench, while José Fonte is likely to get the nod to help shackle Lewandowski and Co. Confidence is high and Portugal will sense a semi-final spot is theirs for the taking.

Form guide (all competitions, most recent first)

Did you know?
Portugal are no strangers to Marseille, having played two games there at EURO '84 – their first finals. They did not win either, though, drawing 1-1 with Spain prior to a thrilling 3-2 extra-time defeat by France in the semis. Read more in our extensive match background.

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