China Selects Five Overseas-Born Players For World Cup Qualifiers
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HONG KONG - China head coach Li Tie has included five overseas-born players in his 26-man squad ahead of the resumption of their World Cup qualifying campaign later this month.
The former Everton player has selected England-born duo defender Tyias Browning and midfielder Nico Yennaris as well as Brazil-born forwards Elkeson, Alan Carvalho and Fernandinho.
Browning, Elkeson, Carvalho and Fernandinho are among seven Guangzhou FC players in the squad, with the eight-time Chinese Super League champions dominating the selection.
Espanyol winger Wu Lei is the only overseas-based player to be called up for the camp, which begins on May 14 in Suzhou.
China are currently in second place in Group A of the second round of Asia's qualifying tournament for Qatar 2022. Only the eight group winners are guaranteed to advance to the next phase, where they will be joined by the four best runners-up in the battle for the places at the finals.
Asia has four berths at the tournament, not including hosts Qatar, while another spot is potentially available via an intercontinental playoff.
The Chinese trail Group A leaders Syria by eight points but have a game in hand. They face Guam on May 30 before meeting the Maldives and the Philippines ahead of their final match against Syria on June 15.
China National Team Squad
Goalkeepers: Zeng Cheng (Shanghai Shenhua), Yan Junling (Shanghai Port), Liu Dianzuo (Guangzhou), Dong Chunyu (Wuhan)
Defenders: Zhang Linpeng (Guangzhou), Yu Dabao (Beijing Guoan), Wang Shenchao (Shanghai Port), Li Ang (Shanghai Port), Li Lei (Beijing Guoan), Tang Miao (Guangzhou City), Ming Tian (Wuhan), Tyias Browning (Guangzhou)
Midfielders: Hao Junmin (Shandong Taishan), Wu Xi (Shanghai Shenhua), Zhang Xizhe (Beijing Guoan), Chi Zhongguo (Beijing Guoan), Jin Jingdao (Shandong Taishan), Yin Hongbo (Hebei), Nico Yennaris (Beijing Guoan), Wu Xinghan (Shandong Taishan)
Forwards: Wu Lei (Espanyol, Spain), Wei Shihao (Guangzhou), Zhang Yuning (Beijing Guoan), Elkeson (Guangzhou), Alan Carvalho (Guangzhou), Fernandinho (Guangzhou)
(Reporting by Michael Church)