- Wendie Renard called up by new coach Herve Renard
- Renard one of three players to raise concerns over France system
- Led to federation sacking previous coach Corinne Diacre
WHAT HAPPENED? The Lyon defender released a statement in February that said she would not play at this summer's World Cup because she could "no longer support the current system, which is far from the requirements of the highest level".
Since then, the French Football Federation has seen president Noel Le Graet resign and it also relieved Corinne Diacre, head coach of the women's team, of her duties. On March 30, Herve Renard, who led Saudi Arabia's men's national team at the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, was appointed as her successor and has now included the France captain in his first squad.
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THE BIGGER PICTURE: Wendie Renard wasn't the only notable inclusion in his list. Eugenie Le Sommer, France's all-time top goal-scorer but a player who has not represented her country since April 2021, was also called up. "She has incomparable experience," the new coach said. "We need her experience and her intelligence."
Renard also spoke about Amandine Henry, the classy Lyon midfielder who was last called up by Diacre in November 2020. She is currently injured but the coach explained that he had called her, adding: "She is one of the players likely to be shortlisted for the World Cup."
AND WHAT'S MORE: Marie-Antoinette Katoto and Kadidiatou Diani, the PSG forwards, both followed Wendie Renard in declaring themselves unavailable for the national team. Katoto continues to recover from an ACL rupture while Diani suffered an injury this week that will rule her out of this camp, but it is likely both will return to the squad now when fit.
Asked about Katoto, Herve Renard said: "She is an important player in this France team. My wish is that she is with us for the World Cup. I will meet her in the next few days."
FRANCE SQUAD IN FULL:
GOALKEEPERS: Mylene Chavas (Bordeaux), Pauline Peyraud-Magnin (Juventus), Constance Picaud (PSG)
DEFENDERS: Selma Bacha (Lyon), Estelle Cascarino (Manchester United), Hawa Cissoko (West Ham), Elisa De Almeida (PSG), Magou Doucoure (Reims), Maelle Lakrar (Montpellier), Eve Perisset (Chelsea), Wendie Renard (Lyon)
MIDFIELDERS: Kenza Dali (Aston Villa), Laurina Fazer (PSG), Grace Geyoro (PSG), Oriane Jean-Francois (PSG), Lea Le Garrec (Fleury), Amel Majri (Lyon), Sandie Toletti (Real Madrid)
FORWARDS: Viviane Asseyi (West Ham), Sandy Baltimore (PSG), Kessya Bussy (Reims), Delphine Cascarino (Lyon), Eugenie Le Sommer (Lyon), Clara Mateo (Paris FC), Ouleymata Sarr (Paris FC)
IN THREE PHOTOS:GettyGettyGetty
WHAT NEXT? France will host two friendlies in the upcoming international window, taking on Colombia on April 7 and Canada on April 11 in Renard's first games in charge.