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Anelka back in France squad

November 03, 2005 18:53 IST

Nicolas Anelka has earned a surprise recall by France for their friendly internationals against Costa Rica on November 9 in Martinique and Germany three days later at the Stade de France.

The enfant terrible of French football had said he would not return to international duty under coach Raymond Domenech. On Thursday he was in the 23-man squad announced by Domenech.

The Fenerbahce striker has not played for France since he rejected a late call-up from former coach Jacques Santini for a friendly against Yugoslavia in November 2002.

"I don't think I'm going to play for 'Les Bleus' again as long as Domenech is in charge," Anelka said in April. "Even when there are dozens of guys injured, Domenech doesn't pick me."

The former PSG and Arsenal striker moved from Manchester City to Fenerbahce in January.

The 26-year-old, who carefully nurtures his rebel image, has won 28 caps for France, scoring six goals.

Anelka later apologised to Santini for his snub in 2002 but the French coach refused to forgive him and ruled him out of the national squad for the 2004 European Championship.

The mercurial striker also missed the 2002 World Cup when Roger Lemerre was in charge.

Anelka won his first cap under Aime Jacquet in April 1998 in a warm-up game against Sweden although he was left out for the triumphant World Cup campaign in France.

On Thursday, Domenech omitted Real Madrid midfielder Zinedine Zidane, who is troubled by a groin injury, for the two friendlies.

Olympique Marseille goalkeeper Fabien Barthez returns after being suspended for six months for spitting at the referee during a club friendly.


Goalkeepers: Fabien Barthez (Olympique Marseille), Gregory Coupet (Olympique Lyon), Mickael Landreau (Nantes)

Defenders: Eric Abidal (Olympique Lyon), Jean-Alain Boumsong (Newcastle), William Gallas (Chelsea), Gael Givet (Monaco), Franck Jurietti (Girondins Bordeaux), Anthony Reveillere (Olympique Lyon), Willy Sagnol (Bayern Munich), Lilian Thuram (Juventus)

Midfielder: Alou Diarra (Racing Lens), Vikash Dhorasoo (Paris St Germain), Claude Makelele (Chelsea), Florent Malouda (Olympique Lyon), Jerome Rothen (Paris St Germain), Patrick Vieira (Juventus)

Strikers: Nicolas Anelka (Fenerbahce) , Djibril Cisse (Liverpool), Thierry Henry (Arsenal), Sidney Govou (Olympique Lyon), David Trezeguet (Juventus), Sylvain Wiltord (Olympique Lyon)

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