Uncapped Pizzi replaces Almeida for Portugal
Striker Luis ”Pizzi” Fernandes has won his first call-up to
the Portugal squad as the Euro 2012 semifinalist starts its World
Cup qualifying campaign.
The 22-year-old Pizzi, who plays for Deportivo La Coruna in
Spain, replaces injured regular Hugo Almeida for the Group F games
against Luxembourg on Sept. 7 and Azerbaijan on Sept. 11.
Coach Paulo Bento left Hugo Viana out of his 23-man squad on
Friday, preferring midfielder Manuel Fernandes of Besiktas.
Cristiano Ronaldo’s Portugal reached the European Championship
semifinals in June, going out in a penalty shootout against
eventual winner Spain.
Russia, Israel and Northern Ireland are also in Group F for the
2014 World Cup in Brazil.
Goalkeepers: Rui Patricio (Sporting Lisbon), Eduardo (Istanbul
BB), Beto (Braga).
Defenders: Joao Pereira (Valencia), Miguel Lopes (FC Porto),
Bruno Alves (Zenit St. Petersburg), Pepe (Real Madrid), Nuno Andre
Coelho (Braga), Ricardo Costa (Valencia), Fabio Coentrao (Real
Midfielders: Miguel Veloso (Dynamo Kiev), Carlos Custodio
(Braga), Raul Meireles (Chelsea), Joao Moutinho (FC Porto), Carlos
Martins (Benfica), Manuel Fernandes (Besiktas), Ruben Micael
Forwards: Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid), Nani (Manchester
United), Silvestre Varela (FC Porto), Helder Postiga (Real
Zaragoza), Luis ”Pizzi” Fernandes (Deportivo La Coruna), Nelson
Oliveira (Deportivo La Coruna).