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Euro: Italy omit Ranocchia, Destro

May 29, 2012 16:55 IST
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Defender Andrea Ranocchia and forward Mattia Destro were left out of Italy's 23-man Euro 2012 squad on Tuesday but centre back Leonardo Bonucci was included despite the match-fixing crisis engulfing the country.

Coach Cesare Prandelli, who on Monday was forced to drop Domenico Criscito after the left back was warned by police that he was being probed in a fix investigation, whittled his squad down from 25 ahead of UEFA's deadline for the June tournament.

Inter centre back Ranocchia's exclusion means Bonucci could well start their Euro 2012 Group C opener against holders Spain in Gdansk on June 10.

Bonucci's name has been mentioned in testimony during the match-fixing probe but he has not been formally put under investigation and has denied wrongdoing.

The Italian soccer federation has said it is happy with the Juventus defender's inclusion.

Italy will also face Croatia and Ireland in Ukraine and Poland.

Goalkeepers: Gianluigi Buffon (Juventus), Morgan De Sanctis (Napoli), Salvatore Sirigu (Paris St Germain)
Defenders: Ignazio Abate (AC Milan), Federico Balzaretti (Palermo), Andrea Barzagli (Juventus), Leonardo Bonucci (Juventus), Giorgio Chiellini (Juventus), Christian Maggio (Napoli), Angelo Ogbonna (Torino)
Midfielders: Daniele De Rossi (AS Roma), Alessandro Diamanti (Bologna), Emanuele Giaccherini (Juventus), Claudio Marchisio (Juventus), Riccardo Montolivo (Fiorentina), Thiago Motta (Paris St Germain), Antonio Nocerino (AC Milan), Andrea Pirlo (Juventus)
Forwards: Mario Balotelli (Manchester City), Fabio Borini (AS Roma), Antonio Cassano (AC Milan), Antonio Di Natale (Udinese), Sebastian Giovinco (Parma)

Blanc drops Gourcuff, Yanga Mbiwa

There was no second chance for Yoann Gourcuff as France coach Laurent Blanc shut the door on the Olympique Lyon playmaker's Euro 2012 hopes when he named his final 23-man squad on Tuesday.

Gourcuff and Montpellier centre back Mapou Yanga Mbiwa were dropped from a preliminary list of 25 as Blanc decided to travel to Ukraine with seven defenders and no recognised playmaker.

Gourcuff had been named in a preliminary squad in spite of a mediocre domestic season, but he failed to impress in a 3-2 friendly win against Iceland on Sunday.

France, instead, will rely on speed down the flanks with Jeremy Menez, Franck Ribery and Mathieu Valbuena all named.

Yanga Mbiwa, who marshalled the Montpellier defence to their maiden Ligue 1 title this season, was one of four centre backs and there was little surprise that Blanc dropped the 23-year-old, who had never been called up before.

Blanc had initially called up centreback Younes Kaboul and forward Loic Remy but lost both players to injuries.

France have been drawn in Group D against England, co-hosts Ukraine and Sweden in the June 8-July 1 tournament.

Les Bleus, who are unbeaten in their last 19 games, will start their campaign against England in Donetsk, Ukraine, on June 11.

Hugo Lloris (Olympique Lyon), Steve Mandanda (Olympique Marseille), Cedric Carrasso (Girondins Bordeaux)
Defenders: Gael Clichy (Manchester City), Patrice Evra (Manchester United), Laurent Koscielny (Arsenal), Philippe Mexes (AC Milan), Adil Rami (Valencia), Mathieu Debuchy (Lille), Anthony Reveillere (Olympique Lyon).
Midfielders: Yohan Cabaye (Newcastle United), Florent Malouda (Chelsea), Samir Nasri (Manchester City), Alou Diarra (Olympique Marseille), Yann M'vila (Stade Rennes), Marvin Martin (Sochaux), Blaise Matuidi (Paris St Germain).
Forwards: Hatem Ben Arfa (Newcastle United), Karim Benzema (Real Madrid), Franck Ribery (Bayern Munich), Olivier Giroud (Montpellier), Jeremy Menez (Paris St Germain), Mathieu Valbuena (Olympique Marseille).

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