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Europa League round of 16 draw

Europa League

Trending: Lallana signs contract extension

By ESPN Staff

Portugal coach Queiroz stands by Pele

Portugal boss Carlos Queiroz has stood by Real Madrid defender Pepe and called him up for next month's World Cup qualifiers.

Pepe has not played since April when he earned a 10-match domestic ban for lashing out during Madrid's 3-2 win over Getafe.

His ban will carry over into the start of next season, but that does not appear to concern Queiroz.

Also included in the squad is West Ham winger Luis Boa Morte, who has earned his first call-up since August 2006, while Benfica goalkeeper Moreira is also recalled.

"It's a great pleasure to return to the national team and I will do everything I can to respond to the vote of confidence this represents," Boa Morte, 31, told

There is also a call for the uncapped Deportivo la Coruna defender Jose Castro.

Queiroz has shaken up his squad as Portugal need to beat Albania on June 6 to end a run of four games without a win which has left them in danger of missing out on the World Cup. They are seven points adrift of Denmark and Hungary in Group One with six points.

Portugal will play Estonia in a friendly on June 10.

Squad: Beto (Leixoes), Daniel Fernandes (Bochum), Eduardo (Braga), Moreira (Benfica); Jose Bosingwa (Chelsea), Bruno Alves (Porto), Gonzalo Brandao (Siena), Jose Castro (Deportivo la Coruna), Miguel (Valencia), Pepe (Real Madrid), Ricardo Carvalho (Chelsea), Rolando (Porto); Deco (Chelsea), Duda (Malaga), Eliseu (Malaga), Joao Moutinho (Sporting Lisbon), Raal Meireles (Porto), Tiago (Juventus); Luis Boa Morte (West Ham), Cristiano Ronaldo (Manchester United), Edinho (AEK Athens), Hugo Almeida (Werder Bremen), Nani (Manchester United), Simao Sabrosa (Atletico Madrid),


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