France coach Didier Deschamps on Monday called up highly rated
Tiemoue Bakayoko for the first time, a week after the young
Monaco midfielder played a major part in dumping Manchester City
out of Europe.
The 22-year-old Bakayoko, who has been strongly linked with a
move to Chelsea and Manchester United, replaces United's Paul
Pogba for Saturday's World Cup qualifier against Luxembourg and
the friendly with Spain after the world's most expensive
footballer suffered a hamstring problem.
"He's powerful, makes an impact, scores decisive goals, makes
goals and is a great all-rounder," Deschamps said of Bakayoko,
who scored a thumping header against City to embellish his
rapidly burgeoning reputation across Europe.
He is the fifth Monaco player in the current France outfit
alongside Benjamin Mendy, Thomas Lemar, Djibril Sidibe and the
teenage forward Kylian Mbappe, another who is being chased by
Deschamps also called up Lyon right-back Christophe Jallet in
place of the injured Bacary Sagna.
Manchester City's Sagna, 34, had joined the France team at their
training camp outside Paris but was diagnosed with a left
adductor injury, the French Football Federation (FFF) said.
The 33-year-old Jallet has 11 caps for France, most recently
against the Netherlands in March 2016.
France play lowly Luxembourg, ranked 135th in the world by FIFA,
on Saturday followed by a friendly against Spain the following
France lead their qualifying Group A for the 2018 World Cup in
Russia with 10 points, ahead of the Netherlands and Sweden
(seven), Bulgaria (six), Belarus (two) and Luxembourg (one).
Goalkeepers: Alphonse Areola (Paris Saint-Germain), Benoit Costil
(Rennes), Hugo Lloris (Tottenham/ENG)
Defenders: Presnel Kimpembe (Paris SG), Laurent Koscielny
(Arsenal/ENG), Layvin Kurzawa (Paris SG), Benjamin Mendy
(Monaco), Adil Rami (Seville/ESP), Djibril Sidibe (Monaco),
Samuel Umtiti (FC Barcelona/ESP), Christophe Jallet (Lyon)
Midfielders: N'Golo Kante (Chelsea/ENG), Thomas Lemar (Monaco),
Blaise Matuidi (Paris SG), Tiemoue Bakayoko (Monaco), Adrien
Rabiot (Paris SG), Corentin Tolisso (Lyon)
Forwards: Ousmane Dembele (Dortmund/GER), Kevin Gameiro (Atletico
Madrid/ESP), Olivier Giroud (Arsenal/ENG), Antoine Griezmann
(Atletico Madrid/ESP), Kylian Mbappe (Monaco), Dimitri Payet
(Marseille), Florian Thauvin (Marseille)