Switzerland recalls Derdiyok for WCup qualifiers
BERN, Switzerland (AP) — Bayer Leverkusen forward Eren Derdiyok has been recalled for Switzerland’s final World Cup qualifying matches, replacing Mario Gavranovic who was suspended by his Zurich club this week for poor discipline.
Switzerland coach Ottmar Hitzfeld selected Derdiyok on Friday for the first time since a 0-0 draw in Cyprus in March.
Unbeaten and holding a five-point lead in Europe Group E, the Swiss need just two points from matches in Albania next Friday and at home to Slovenia four days later to confirm their place in Brazil next year.
Hitzfeld also recalled Johan Djourou after the Hamburger SV defender recovered from injury, and Freiburg pair Gelson Fernandes and Admir Mehmedi. Ten players in the 23-man squad, including Bayern Munich winger Xherdan Shaqiri, are with Bundesliga clubs and just six play in Switzerland.
Switzerland aims to advance to its third straight World Cup finals.
Goalkeepers: Diego Benaglio (Wolfsburg), Yann Sommer (Basel), Marco Woelfli (Young Boys).
Defenders: Stephan Lichtsteiner (Juventus), Michael Lang (Grasshoppers), Steve von Bergen (Young Boys), Philippe Senderos (Fulham), Johan Djourou (Hamburger SV), Fabian Schaer (Basel), Ricardo Rodriguez (Wolfsburg), Reto Ziegler (Sassuolo).
Midfielders: Valon Behrami (Napoli), Blerim Dzemaili (Napoli), Gokhan Inler (Napoli), Valentin Stocker (Basel), Tranquillo Barnetta (Schalke), Gelson Fernandes (Freiburg), Granit Xhaka (Borussia Moenchengladbach), Xherdan Shaqiri (Bayern Munich).
Forwards: Haris Seferovic (Real Sociedad), Eren Derdiyok (Bayer Leverkusen), Josip Drmic (Nuremberg), Admir Mehmedi (Freiburg).