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Cristiano Ronaldo out for Portugal vs. Mexico; Raul Meireles and Pepe also out

The U.S.' group stage opponents are being hit hard by injuries.

Lars Baron

A day after Portugal said that Cristiano Ronaldo had knee tendinosis to go along with his bad thigh, he was ruled out of the team's World Cup tune-up against Mexico. Raul Meireles and Pepe will also miss the match with injuries as the Portugal team continues to struggle for fitness.

Ronaldo wasn't expected to play when Portugal meets Mexico on Friday night. He trained for the first time on Wednesday so even if his thigh and knee were given the go-ahead by doctors (unlikely) he would have had a hard time getting match fit in time to play El Tri.

Ronaldo's injury continues to be a serious concern for Portugal, who lean heavily on the reigning Ballon d'Or winner. At this point, it's tough to imagine him at full fitness and form come the World Cup so even if he's on track to play, whether we see the best Ronaldo seems unlikely.

The injuries to Meireles and Pepe are considered minor, but they have been lingering for a couple weeks now too. The pair have been in and out of training so they're not far off from playing, but they clearly can't shake their knocks. With both expected to start in the middle of the park, that's obviously a huge issue for the Portuguese.

The United States will play Portugal in their second World Cup group stage match on June 22 in Manaus. That means Ronald -- as well as Meireles and Pepe -- have 15 days to get fit before playing the U.S. or the Americans will have a leg up when they head to the Amazon.