Iran call 27 to camp
27 players to camp in preparation for their Asian Cup match against Chinese Taipei on February 27. Borrowing from the great Italian director Sergio Leone, I am going to tell you about “The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly” of this list.
• It is good to see the same number two and three goalkeepers called again. Ivankovic has been rotating backups in and out of the camps for the last two years.
• Many younger players who deserve to be there are there. Mojtaba Jabbari, Andrianik Teymourian, Masoud Shojaei, Mehrzad Madanchi, and Mehdi Rajabzadeh are all promising young midfielders who given a chance will certainly shine.
• Javad Kazemian, one of the more promising players in Iran, who was targeted by Bundesliga’s Kaiserslautern a few months ago, is back on the list. For some reason he had been ignored for the last few camps.
• Iman Mobali who had a falling out with Captain Ali Daei during a league match was left off the list. Mobali now plays his football in UAE and he is performing very well.
• Ali Daei was again included. Asian Cup qualifying games should be used as an opportunity to try new players. Nothing will be gained by playing 37 year old Daei against teams that we should easily defeat.
• Reza Enayati, Iranian Pro League’s top scorer in the last the last few years was once again snubbed. This is simply irrational. Enayati has never been given a fair chance at the national level.
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