The 15th-ranked Canadian men lost the opening two games of their European tour: 19-15 to No. 17 Georgia and 21-20 to No. 16 Romania.
Portugal, ranked 22nd by the International Rugby Board, is coming off a 36-13 loss to No. 13 Fiji and 68-0 win over No. 27 Brazil.
"Portugal play a lot more rugby then Georgia and Romania so we're expecting the game to be a lot more open," Canadian coach Kieran Crowley said in a statement. "They compete very hard at the breakdown so we will need to be accurate in this area."
The Canadians will have to make do without five overseas professional players. Jeff Hassler, Tyler Ardron, Jebb Sinclair, Phil Mackenzie and Matt Evans have all returned to their clubs.
Canada's record is 5-5 in 2013.
Seven of Canada's starting 15, and two from the reserve bench, will travel to Dubai following Saturday's game for the second leg of the HSBC Sevens World Series.
Hubert Buydens (capt.), Manawatu Turbos (New Zealand), Saskatoon; Ray Barkwill, Niagara Wasps, Niagara Falls, Ont.; Andrew Tiedemann, Castaway Wanderers, St. Albert, Alta.; Jon Phelan, Lille Metropole (France), Montreal; Tyler Hotson, London Scottish (England), Vancouver,; John Moonlight, James Bay AA, Pickering, Ont.; Nanyak Dala, Castaway Wanderers, Saskatoon; Adam Kleeberger, Castaway Wanderers, White Rock, B.C.; Phil Mack, James Bay AA, Victoria; Harry Jones, Capilano RFC, West Vancouver; Taylor Paris, Agen (France), Barrie, Ont.; Nick Blevins, Calgary Hornets, Calgary; Ciaran Hearn, Castaway Wanderers, Conception Bay, N.L.; Conor Trainor, UBCOB Ravens, Vancouver; James Pritchard, Bedford Blues, Parkes, Australia.
Benoit Piffero, Burnaby Lake RFC, Montreal; Djustice Sears-Duru, Castaway Wanderers, Oakville, Ont.; Jake Ilnicki, Williams Lake Rustlers, Williams Lake, B.C.; Brett Beukeboom, Plymouth Albion (England) Lindsay, Ont.; Kyle Gilmour, St. Albert Rugby Club, Edmonton; Jamie Mackenzie, UVIC Vikes, Oakville, Ont.; Pat Parfrey, Swilers RFC, St. John's, N.L.
23- Connor Braid, (James Bay AA/BC Bears) Victoria, BC.