China released its 26-man soccer squad named by coach Zhu
Guanghu in Beijing on Friday, who called three Chinese overseas
players back for Asian Cup qualifier on September 6 against
China edged out Singapore 1-0 on August 16, thanks to German
Bundesliga striker Shao Jiayi's last-gasp penalty in the northern
city Tianjin. Coach Zhu has been under fire for failing to meet
Zhu drew lessons from the first confrontation to give much more
weight to the second leg in Singapore by summoning three overseas
players-Shao from Energie Cottbusin, the newly-promoted German
Bundesliga club, Dong Fangzhuo, forward in top Belgian club
Anderlecht and Li Tie, midfielder from English Premier League club
Manchester City defender Sun Jihai was excluded from the match
Playmaker Zheng Zhi returned to the squad after the six-month
suspension imposed by Asian Football Confederation (AFC) for
pushing an opponent in an Asian Champions League match last year,
surely boosting Zhu's confidence.
Apart from Zheng, five other players from Shandong, Chinese Super League leader, made it
to the team.
China has accumulated six points after three games with two wins
and one loss and ranks second behind Iraq in Group E only because
of goal difference.
The Asian Cup finals will be held in July, jointly hosted by
Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand and Vietnam.
The winners and runners-up from all six qualifying groups
advance to the finals along with the four co-hosts.
Goalkeepers: Li Leilei (Shandong); Yang Zhi (Beijing); Wang
Dalei (Shanghai Liancheng); Zheng Bin (Wuhan); Dong Fangzhuo
(Anderlecht); Shao Jiayi (Energie Cottbus)
Forwards: Li Jinyu (Shandong); Han Peng (Shandong); Zou Jie
Midfielders: Zhou Haibin (Shandong); Cui Peng (Shandong); Tao
Wei (Beijing); Jiangkun (Shanghai Liancheng); Du Zhenyu
(Changchun); Wang Dong (Changchun); Zhao Junzhe (Liaoning); Li Tie(Sheffield United)
Defenders: Zheng Zhi (Shandong); Xu Yunlong (Beijing); Ji Mingyi
(Dalian); Zhang Yaokun (Dalian); Li Weifeng (Shanghai Shenhua); Sun
Xiang (Shanghai Shenhua); Cao Yang (Tianjin); Hao Junmin (Tianjin);
Xu Liang (Liaoning).
(Xinhua News Agency August 26, 2006)