Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Benzema and Valbuena left out of France squad

SoccerNews in La Liga 5 Nov 2015


Karim Benzema and Mathieu Valbuena have been left out of the France squad for the upcoming friendlies with Germany and England.

Benzema was on Thursday charged by prosecutors in Versailles with complicity in an attempt to blackmail and participating in a criminal conspiracy as part of an investigation into a sex-tape plot involving Valbuena.

Benzema’s lawyer Sylvain Cormier has denied his client’s involvement and, with the Real Madrid man also carrying a thigh injury, Les Blues boss Didier Deschamps opted to omit the pair for the clash with the world champions in Paris on November 13 and the trip to Wembley four days later.

“Karim is injured and therefore not in the squad,” Deschamps said at a media conference.

“Regarding the recent events, I do not know all the details of the case, but I have little doubt justice will do its job.”

Deschamps said Lyon midfielder Valbuena was left out as he was not in the right state of mind.

“He is not in the best of conditions psychologically. I have taken the decision to give him some rest,” Deschamps added.

Bayern Munich youngster Kingsley Coman has been called up for the first time and could make his debut against Germany, while Hatem Ben Arfa has also made the cut following his fine performances in 2015-16, having last played for France in 2012.

Squad in full: 

Goalkeepers:  Benoit Costil (Rennes), Hugo Lloris (Tottenham), Steve Mandanda (Marseille)

Defenders: Lucas Digne (Roma), Patrice Evra (Juventus), Christophe Jallet (Lyon), Laurent Koscielny (Arsenal), Eliaquim Mangala (Manchester City), Bacary Sagna (Manchester City), Mamadou Sakho (Liverpool), Raphael Varane (Real Madrid) 

Midfielders: Yohan Cabaye (Crystal Palace), Lassana Diarra (Marseille), Blaise Matuidi (Paris Saint-Germain), Paul Pogba (Juventus), Morgan Schneiderlin (Manchester United), Moussa Sissoko (Newcastle)

Attackers: Hatem Ben Arfa (Nice), Kingsley Coman (Bayern Munich), Andre-Pierre Gignac (Tigres), Olivier Giroud (Arsenal), Antoine Griezmann (Atletico Madrid), Anthony Martial (Manchester United)


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