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João Cancelo puts the Portuguese national team among the favorites to win the European Championship.

Portuguese international João Cancelo believes that the Portuguese national team has all the conditions to be one of the favorites to win the European Championship in 2024, which will be held in Germany.

“We have a lot of players to go very far in the competition and, of course, we are, in my opinion, one of the favorites to win,” said the Barcelona player in an interview with journalist Pedro Pinto’s podcast “1 Para 1”.

Cancelo, who has 50 caps and 10 goals for Portugal, admitted that, given the quality of the Quinas team, “expectations are high”, stressing that the Portuguese team is “one of the favorites to win” the competition that will take place between June 14 and July 14 next year.

The defender, who was born in Barreiro 29 years ago, arrived in Catalonia last summer and guarantees that it was “very easy” to adapt to Barcelona, the team he has always been a fan of, and that being able to wear the Barça shirt is “a dream come true”.

And he chose Barcelona’s 2009 team as the best ever, with stars such as Dani Alves, Gerard Piqué, Carles Puyol, Xavi (the current Catalan coach), Iniesta, Sergio Busquets, Thierry Henry and Lionel Messi.

“I grew up watching the best soccer team play, which is Barcelona in 2009, and many of my idols played here. So it was easy to adapt because I really like the club, I really like the dynamic of the club and it’s been easy, it’s been very easy,” he said.

Regarding the current squad, Cancelo pointed to a “first class team”, made up of “first class people”.

The Portuguese full-back, on loan at Barcelona from Manchester City, guaranteed that when he left England, Barça was always his “first choice”, even though the club is not going through its best financial moment.

“I wanted to come here and I did everything I could to come,” he said, highlighting the climate, the restaurants and the people themselves” in Barcelona as points in his favor, although he admitted that he doesn’t have the same privacy as he did in the north of England.

In Catalonia he met up again with his compatriot João Félix, on loan from Atlético de Madrid, a player Cancelo praises.

“It’s always good to have people who speak our language in the locker room. Félix is pure talent. I think there’s a lot of talent in Portugal in general. But I think Félix is one of those who can really make a difference,” said Cancelo.

The Portuguese international also pointed out that when he arrived at Barça he was surprised by the quality of Frenkie de Jong.

“The impact, the biggest impact I’ve had in terms of quality here is Frenkie de Jong. If you trained with him or watched him train, you’d realize that he has different things”, he explained.

Cancelo returned to Spain – where he spent four seasons at Valencia – after being left out of Pep Guardiola’s plans at Manchester City.

Even so, the Portuguese footballer highlighted his former coach’s “winning mentality”, which made him “much more competitive”.

“Pep made me see soccer in a different way,” concluded Cancelo.

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