Deco in Portugal squad for SA
Lisbon - Portugal coach Carlos Queiroz on Thursday named injured Chelsea midfielder Deco in his squad for the forthcoming World Cup 2010 qualifier against Sweden and the friendly against South Africa.
Portugal, quarterfinalists at Euro 2008 and semi-finalists at the last World Cup in Germany, face Sweden in Porto on March 28 before travelling to Lausanne in Switzerland to take on World Cup 2010 hosts South Africa on March 31.
Deco, who signed from Barcelona last summer, limped out of Chelsea's 1-0 Premier League win against Manchester City on Sunday with a recurrence of a hamstring injury.
Chelsea's interim coach Guus Hiddink voiced "doubts" about whether the former Porto man would be able to return to action this season.
Queiroz, a former assistant to Manchester United coach Sir Alex Ferguson, also handed a first call-up to 27-year-old Leixoes goalkeeper Beto, while Atletico Madrid attacking midfielder Simao and Deco's Chelsea team-mate Ricardo Carvalho both return to the squad after injury.
The Portuguese Football Federation revealed that Queiroz "will call up an extra player" after the weekend's domestic matches.
Portugal are currently fourth in Group One of World Cup qualifying, two points behind leaders Denmark.
Goalkeepers: Daniel Fernandes (Bochum/GER), Eduardo (Braga), Beto (Leixoes)
Defenders: Bruno Alves (Porto), Goncalo Brandao (Siena/ITA), Pepe (Real Madrid/ESP), Ricardo Carvalho (Chelsea/ENG), Nelson (Real Betis/ESP), Jose Bosingwa (Chelsea/ENG), Rolando (Porto)
Midfielders: Deco (Chelsea/ENG), Joao Moutinho (Sporting Lisbon), Maniche (Atletico Madrid/ESP), Raul Meireles (Porto), Duda (Malaga/ESP), Tiago (Juventus/ITA)
Forwards: Danny (Zenit St Petersburg/RUS), Simao (Atletico Madrid/ESP), Hugo Almeida (Werder Bremen/GER), Nani (Manchester United/ENG), Cristiano Ronaldo (Manchester United/ENG)