Lacazette & Laporte omitted from France squad for Euro 2020 qualifiers

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Didier Deschamps has opted to leave the Premier League duo out of upcoming European Championships qualifiers against Moldova and Iceland

Arsenal forward Alexandre Lacazette and Manchester City defender Aymeric Laporte have been omitted from Didier Deschamps' latest France squad.

The 24-man squad was announced on Thursday as the 2018 World Cup winners prepare to open their European Championships qualifying campaign.

Despite currently enjoying a strong 2018-19 campaign at Arsenal - scoring 14 goals in all competitions - Lacazette has not been included, with Chelsea's Olivier Giroud getting the nod ahead of both him and in-form Sevilla forward Wissam Ben Yedder.

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Hugo Lloris, Lucas Digne, Kurt Zouma, Paul Pogba, N'Golo Kante, Moussa Sissoko and Anthony Martial are the remaining Premier League stars named in the final squad, with Laporte another notable absentee after playing a starring role for City this year.

Laporte has never been capped by his country, with it understood that Deschamps is concerned by his personality , and  the defender spoke out in December claiming that the coach has a personal issue with him.

Pogba and Martial both missed games against the Netherlands and Uruguay back in November, but they have been restored to the squad after their impressive recent displays at Manchester United.

France kick off their Group H campaign in Moldova on March 22, before facing Iceland at home three days later.

Barcelona defender Samuel Umtiti will return to the international stage after missing the last round of fixtures through injury, while there is also a place for Bayern Munich's Kingsley Coman, who has not played for France since 2017.

Meanwhile, Ousmane Dembele has been left at home after sustaining a torn hamstring during Barcelona's Champions League win over Lyon on Wednesday.

France will be expected to win both games comfortably as they look ahead to the 2020 European Championships, with fixtures against Turkey, Andorra and Albania to come later in the year.

Deschamps' men reached the final of the competition on home soil in 2016 only to lose to Portugal in extra-time, but they came back stronger two years later to win the World Cup in Russia.

FULL FRANCE MARCH SQUAD LIST: 

Goalkeepers: Alphonse Areola, Hugo Lloris, Steve Mandanda

Defenders: Lucas Digne, Presnel Kimpembe, Layvin Kurzawa, Benjamin Pavard, Djibril Sidibe, Raphael Varane, Samuel Umtiti, Kurt Zouma

Midfielders: N'Golo Kante, Blaise Matuidi, Tanguy Ndombele, Paul Pogba, Moussa Sissoko

Forwards: Kingsley Coman, Nabil Fekir, Olivier Giroud, Antoine Griezmann, Anthony Martial, Kylian Mbappe, Florian Thauvin

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