Muriel named in Colombia squad
Lecce striker Luis Muriel has been rewarded for his recent form with a place in the Colombia squad.
Jose Pekerman included Muriel in his squad for the first time for the upcoming 2014 World Cup qualifiers.
The Colombian Football Federation (FCF) confirmed a list of 15 players based in Europe and Mexico on their official website, and the biggest surprise was the presence of 21-year-old Muriel.
The former Deportivo Cali man, who is owned by Udinese but spent last season on loan with Lecce, is preferred to controversial Lanus forward Teofilo Gutierrez in Pekerman's first competitive squad.
Muriel may have the chance to recreate the explosive partnership with James Rodriguez, after the Porto man was also called up.
The young pair scored seven goals between them in Colombia's Under-20 World Cup campaign of 2011, which ended at the quarter-final stage.
Pekerman elected to only include players whose league seasons have come to an end, which explains the absence of David Ospina, as the goalkeeper prepares for the conclusion of Ligue 1 with Nice. Ospina, as well as the contingent from the Colombian Liga Postobon, will be called up later.
Colombia visit Peru on June 2 in their fourth match of the World Cup qualifying campaign, travelling to Quito seven days later to take on Ecuador.
Squad: Luis Perea (Atletico Madrid), Mario Yepes (AC Milan), Pablo Armero (Udinese), Cristian Zapata (Villarreal), Bernardo Espinosa (Racing Santander), Aquivaldo Mosquera ( America).
Midfielders: James Rodriguez (Porto), Fredy Guarin (Inter), Elkin Soto (Mainz), Juan Guillermo Cuadrado (Lecce), Aldo Ramirez (Morelia).
Strikers: Radamel Falcao (Atletico Madrid), Luis Muriel (Lecce), Adrian Ramos (Hertha), Jackson Martinez (Jaguares).