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Cristiano Ronaldo to miss Portugal's Euro qualifier

Cristiano Ronaldo is unfit and will miss Portugal's opening 2016 European Championship qualifier against visiting Albania.

Forward unfit for Sept. 7 match vs. Albania

Cristiano Ronaldo has been playing for Real Madrid to start the season, but he won't be fit enough to play for Portugal when it starts its qualifying for Euro 2016 on Sept. 7. (Daniel Ochoa de Olza/Associated Press)

Cristiano Ronaldo is unfit and will miss Portugal's opening 2016 European Championship qualifier against visiting Albania.

Portugal coach Paulo Bento said Friday that the country's star forward, who has been playing for Real Madrid at the start of the season, was ruled unfit to play in the Sept. 7 match by the Portuguese Football Federation's medical department. Bento did not elaborate.

The 24-man squad features four players who earned their first call-up as Bento said he was aiming for a "gradual renewal" of his team after Portugal's disappointing first-round exit from the World Cup in Brazil. Ronaldo said he was not fully fit at that tournament.

Defender Ruben Vezo, midfielders Adrien Silva and Pedro Tiba, and strikers Ricardo Horta and Bruma will be seeking their first cap.

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