Montevideo, June 3 (IANS) Uruguay manager Marcelo Bielsa has named 14 uncapped players in his squad for friendlies against Nicaragua and Cuba, the South American country’s football association said.
The new faces include Sporting Lisbon goalkeeper Franco Israel, Valencia defender Facundo Gonzalez, Real Valladolid defender Lucas Olaza and Schalke midfielder Rodrigo Salazar, reports Xinhua.
Others called up for the first time were Randall Rodriguez, Sebastian Boselli, Mateo Ponte, Emiliano Martinez, Fabricio Diaz, Luciano Rodriguez, Anderson Duarte, Thiago Borbas, Maximiliano Araujo and Federico Vinas.
Absent from the list were veterans Luis Suarez, Edinson Cavani, Jose Maria Gimenez, Martin Caceres and Fernando Muslera.
Uruguay will face Nicaragua at Estadio Centenario in Montevideo on June 14 and Cuba at the same venue six days later.
The friendlies will be Bielsa’s first matches in charge of the Celeste following his appointment last month. The 67-year-old Argentine replaced Diego Alonso, who was sacked after the team’s failure to progress to the knockout stages of last year’s World Cup in Qatar.
Goalkeepers: Sergio Rochet, Franco Israel, Santiago Mele, Randall Rodriguez.
Defenders: Bruno Mendez, Mauricio Lemos, Sebastian Boselli, Facundo Gonzalez, Sebastian Caceres, Guillermo Varela, Jose Luis Rodriguez, Mateo Ponte, Joaquin Piquerez, Matias Vina and Lucas Olaza.
Midfielders: Emiliano Martinez (Midtjylland), Fabricio Diaz, Felipe Carballo, Matias Vecino, Agustin Canobbio, Maximiliano Araujo, Facundo Torres, Brian Rodriguez, Facundo Pellistri, Rodrigo Salazar.
Forwards: Diego Rossi, Luciano Rodriguez, Anderson Duarte, Matias Arezo, Thiago Borbas and Federico Vinas.