Premier League duo big omission from France's World Cup squad

Premier League duo big omission from France's World Cup squad

Alexandre Lacazette and Anthony Martial were among the big-name players placed on a standby list in a France World Cup squad that includes Chelsea duo Olivier Giroud and N'Golo Kante.

Arsenal striker Lacazette, who scored 14 goals in 32 Premier League appearances this season, features in a list of 11 players on stand-by should one of the 23 men selected by Deschamps get injured before the coach hands his list to Federation Internationale de Football Association on June 4, 10 days before the start of the tournament in Russia.

"Without his injury he would have been a serious candidate for the 23-man list", Deschamps said.

Payet, the former West Ham midfielder now at Marseille, will miss this summer's tournament in Russian Federation after aggravating a muscle injury during his side's Europa League final defeat to Atletico Madrid. "He played the first half-hour (against Atletico), but he aggravated his injury, and the recovery time needed for that type of injury is three weeks", Deschamps said after revealing his squad live on television station TF1's evening news programme. They open their campaign on June 16 when they take on Australia at the Kazan Arena.

The omission of Martial and Lacazette is an indication of the wealth of attacking options at Deschamps' disposal, with the likes of Antoine Griezmann, Kylian Mbappe, Ousmane Dembele and Chelsea's Olivier Giroud, who moved to Stamford Bridge from Arsenal in January, named in the squad.

But he has also fallen victim to the number of attacking options available to Deschamps, who did call up Payet's Marseille team-mate Florian Thauvin along with Lyon captain Nabil Fekir.

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He went off injured in Marseille's Europa League final defeat to Atletico Madrid on Wednesday night.

As expected, Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema is not in the squad after being snubbed since being involved in a sex tape-blackmail scandal in 2015.

Laurent Koscielny was another French player set to miss out on World Cup following his Achilles injury.

He told reporters: 'They were good against Germany, but the whole team were.

"I have had these two players in several situations, as starters and substitutes".

The obvious stumbling block would be United's refusal to sell to a rival or Martial's desire to leave Old Trafford, though the latter now could be enhanced following his absence from France's World Cup squad.

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