Valbuena, Planus remain in trimmed France squad

Paris: The uncapped pair of Mathieu Valbuena and Marc Planus were retained by France coach Raymond Domenech when he trimmed his provisional World Cup squad from 30 to 24 players on Monday.

Forward Valbuena was rewarded for helping Olympique Marseille win the the Ligue 1 title with convincing performances and Girondins defender Planus was left in with still doubts on whether centre back Williams Gallas will be fit to play.

Domenech, who has until June 1 to name his official 23-man squad, is still hoping Gallas will be able to take part in the June 11-July 11 finals in South Africa despite being hampered by a calf injury.

The France coach, who had unveiled a 30-strong list last week, dropped goalkeeper Mickael Landreau, defenders Rod Fanni and Adil Rami, midfielder Yann M’Vila and forwards Hatem Ben Arfa and Jimmy Briand.

France will face hosts South Africa, Mexico and Uruguay in Group A.

Bureau Report