World Cup 2018: 5 Premier League stars dropped by France
Didier Deschamps has become the latest manager to announce the World Cup squad. France is expected to be a strong contender in the competition. With the best forwards such as Antoine Griezmann, Kylian Mbappe and Ousmane Dembele leading the team, it is expected that France will advance far.
Senior defender, Laurent Koscielny, was poised to play his last World Cup for France before his retirement. However, a serious Achilles injury which he suffered while playing against Atletico Madrid has ruled him out of the World Cup. That dashed his hopes of playing for his nation.
On that note, here are five other notable absentees from the squad despite being fit. They have been named on standby, but it looks hard for them to replace anyone from the 23-man squad unless a player suffers an injury.
#5 Mamadou Sakho (Crystal Palace)
The senior defender is another player missing out from the 23-man squad after Deschamps opted to pick a few relatively young defenders. The former Paris Saint-Germain centre-back gained attention when he made his debut for the Ligue 1 club. After spending six years with the club, he moved to play in English Premier League.
Under Roy Hodgson's guidance this season, Sakho has formed one of the best partnerships in Premier League with James Tomkins. After playing 12 matches together, the duo saw their team win nine matches, draw three and concede just eight goals. Despite living up to his standards, Sakho was named in the standby list.
It is a real pity for the defender to miss the World Cup even though he had a great season. Previously, the defender was involved in a drug scandal which cost him the chance to play for France in Euro 2016. Sakho was confirmed to have done nothing wrong but the chance was gone. Once again, the player looks set to miss another competition with other defenders preferred. Sakho had played in the last edition of the World Cup held in Brazil and was a regular starter for his side. Deschamps probably felt that it will be more beneficial to bring some capable young defenders to the world competition and leave Sakho out of the team.