Laporte included in France squad for Euro 2020 qualifiers

Paris, Aug 29 (AFP/APP):France coach Didier Deschamps has included Manchester City centre-back Aymeric Laporte in his squad announced on Thursday for next month’s Euro 2020 qualifying double header against Albania and Andorra.

Laporte, 25, was last called up to a squad in March 2017 but has never been capped by France at full international level.

This time he has been preferred to Barcelona’s Samuel Umtiti, meaning there is a total of 10 players in the squad who did not take part in France’s triumphant 2018 World Cup campaign.

There is also a first call-up for the 21-year-old Lille forward Jonathan Ikone, who is included with Kylian Mbappe absent due to a hamstring injury.

Other notable injury absentees include Barcelona forward Ousmane Dembele and Manchester United’s Anthony Martial.

France are top of Euro 2020 qualifying Group H with nine points from four games, although they are ahead of both Turkey and Iceland only on goal difference.

They won 4-0 away to minnows Andorra in their last qualifier in June.

The World Cup holders welcome Albania to the Stade de France on September 7 and then entertain Andorra at the same venue three days later.

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