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By ESPN Staff

Portugal forced to release Deco and Maniche

Chelsea midfielder Deco and Atletico Madrid's Maniche have been released from the Portugal squad for the upcoming World Cup qualifiers against Sweden and Albania.

Chelsea star Deco has been nursing a thigh injury and Maniche has a back problem.

They were released late yesterday after the national team's doctor decided neither had any chance of featuring in either game.

The squad to face Sweden on Saturday and Albania on Wednesday is already without Chelsea defender Ricardo Carvalho and Atletico winger Simao Sabrosa.

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