Didier Deschamps has hit back at Arsene Wenger’s request for Abou Diaby to be left out of the latest France squad.
The Arsenal midfielder picked up an injury in their 2-1 defeat to Chelsea last weekend and the French coach then pleaded for him to remain with his club during the international break.
Deschamps was not impressed with Wenger’s demands and sent out a defiant warning to the veteran Premier League manager.
“I want to remind him that I am the only one to decide who will be picked and how long those who are picked will play,” Deschamps told reporters on Thursday.
“There is only one to decide and it’s me.”
Although Manchester City playmaker Samir Nasri’s three-game international suspension has been served, Deschamps has opted not to give him a recall for their friendly against Japan on October 12 and their World Cup qualifier in Spain on October 16.
“I didn’t think it was the right time to call him back, I prefer to wait a while,” he added.
France’s battle against Spain could be crucial in deciding the composition of Group I, with only one nation qualifying automatically for the 2014 World Cup.
That will leave the second-placed side having to go through the play-off process and Deschamps is realistic about the challenge ahead.
“Maybe they are missing some players, but they are still the best team in the world,” he said.
“The facts are there. No other team has won the European Championship, the World Cup and the Euros again.”