Chelsea pair out of French squad
By Paul Higham
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Desailly captained his country to equal the record for French caps with Didier Deschamps last month against the Czech Republic, but has not been included in the qualifying double-header and will have to wait to set a new record.
Team-mate Petit is also omitted from the last squad that suffered a 2-0 home defeat against Czech Republic as Santini includes only those fully fit players.
Monaco's Jerome Rothen is the new face in the 20-man squad as he earns his first French call-up after a string of stunning displays for the Principality side.
Goalkeeper Ulrich Rame has paid for his blunder in the Czech game by being left out with Fabien Barthez and Gregory Coupet returning from injury to fill the goalkeeping positions.
Sochaux midfielder Benoit Pedretti keeps his place in the squad for the games in Malta on March 29 and then the Israel clash in Italy four days later on April 2.
Full French Squad:
Fabien Barthez (Manchester United), Gregory Coupet (Lyon), William Gallas (Chelsea), Bixente Lizarazu (Bayern Munich), Philippe Mexes (Auxerre), Willy Sagnol (Bayern Munich), Mikael Silvestre (Manchester United), Lilian Thuram (Juventus), Claude Makelele (Real Madrid), Benoit Pedretti (Sochaux), Robert Pires (Arsenal), Jerome Rothen (Monaco), Patrick Vieira (Arsenal), Sylvain Wiltord (Arsenal), Zinedine Zidane (Real Madrid), Djibril Cisse (Auxerre), Sidney Govou (Lyon), Thierry Henry (Arsenal), Steve Marlet (Fulham), David Trezeguet (Juventus).