World Cup: Iran name 28-man provisional squad for finals in Brazil
Iran coach Carlos Queiroz has announced a provisional 28-man squad for the 2014 World Cup finals in Brazil.
Last Updated: 30/05/14 2:24pm
The former Manchester United assistant manager has called up the initial group of players for training camps in Tehran and Austria.
Fulham midfielder Ashkan Dejagah and Charlton Athletic forward Reza Ghoochannejhad have been summoned to the squad, which will have to be trimmed to 23 players by the June 2 deadline.
Dejagah has scored five goals and provided two assists in 21 Premier League games for the Cottagers this season, while Ghoochannejhad has struck once in 15 appearances for the Addicks in the Championship since his move from Standard Liege in January.
Veteran striker Ali Karimi has not been called up to the preliminary squad for Iran, although there is a place for Sardar Azmoun.
The 19-year-old forward, who has been linked with a move to Arsenal this summer, has been in impressive form for Russian club Rubin Kazan and will be optimistic of his chances of going to Brazil for the World Cup.
Iran have been drawn against Argentina, Bosnia & Herzegovina and Nigeria in Group F.
Team Melli will open their campaign against the African nation in Curitiba on June 16, before facing the South American giants in Belo Horizonte five days later.
Queiroz and his players' final group match will be against European side Bosnia in Salvador on June 25.
Iran's provisional World Cup squad:
Goalkeepers: Daniel Davari (Eintracht Braunschweig), Alireza Haghighi (Sporting Covilha, on loan from Rubin Kazan), Rahman Ahmadi (Sepahan), Sousha Makani (Foolad Khuzestan).
Defenders: Khosro Heidari (Esteghlal), Hossein Mahini (Persepolis), Steven Beitashour (Vancouver Whitecaps), Pejman Montazeri (Umm Salal), Jalal Hosseini (Persepolis), Amir Sadeghi (Esteghlal), Mohammad Reza Khanzadeh (Zob Ahan), Ahmad Alenemeh (Naft), Hashem Beikzadeh (Esteghlal), Ehsan Hajsafi (Sepahan), Mehrdad Pooladi (Persepolis).
Midfielders: Javad Nekounam (Al Kuwait), Andranik Teymourian (Esteghlal), Reza Haghighi (Persepolis), Ghasem Hadadifar (Zob Ahan), Bakhtiyar Rahmani (Foolad), Alireza Jahanbakhsh (NEC Nijmegen), Ashkan Dejagah (Fulham).
Forwards: Masoud Shojaei (Las Palmas), Mohammad Reza Khalatbari (Persepolis), Mehdi Sharifi (Sepahan), Reza Ghoochannejhad (Charlton), Karim Ansarifard (Persepolis, on loan at Tractor Sazi), Sardar Azmoun (Rubin Kazan).