Olivier Giroud named in provisional France World Cup squad

Coach Didier Deschamps wrestles with injuries ahead of Monday's final list

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Olivier Giroud was named in France's provisional squad for the Qatar World Cup as coach Didier Deschamps unveiled a 25-man group on Wednesday amid injury concerns for the defending champions.

The experienced striker, recalled in March after a nine-month gap following the team's early Euro 2021 exit, has been in good form for AC Milan and France and is two goals shy of Thierry Henry's all-time national scoring record of 51 goals.

"He knows where he stands. He knows what my position is. It's better for the French team that he is with us," said Deschamps, who will have to trim his squad to 23 by Monday.

Several players have been struggling with injuries, including Ballon d'Or winner Karim Benzema, Paris St Germain centre back Presnel Kimpembe and Manchester United defender Raphael Varane.

With Paul Pogba and Ngolo Kante injured and ruled out of the tournament ahead of the squad announcement, Aurelien Tchouameni, Adrien Rabiot and Eduardo Camavinga were among the six midfielders named.

Up front, Kylian Mbappe was named along with Giroud, Benzema, Kingsley Coman, Ousmane Dembele, Antoine Griezmann and Christopher Nkunku.

France will be in Group D in Qatar with Australia, Denmark and Tunisia, and start their campaign against the Australians on November 22 at the Al Janoub Stadium.

Provisional France squad

Goalkeepers: Alphonse Areola, Hugo Lloris, Steve Mandanda

Defenders: Lucas Hernandez, Theo Hernandez, Presnel Kimpembe, Ibrahima Konate, Jules Kounde, Benjamin Pavard, William Saliba, Dayot Upamecano, Raphael Varane

Midfielders: Eduardo Camavinga, Youssouf Fofana, Matteo Guendouzi, Adrien Rabiot, Aurelien Tchouameni, Jordan Veretout

Forwards: Karim Benzema, Kingsley Coman, Ousmane Dembele, Olivier Giroud, Antoine Griezmann, Kylian Mbappe, Christopher Nkunku

Updated: November 09, 2022, 8:11 PM
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