Manchester United's Anthony Martial still in Didier Deschamps' France plans
Last Updated: 13/11/19 12:57pm
France manager Didier Deschamps insists the door is still open for Anthony Martial in international football despite being left out of the squad to face Moldova and Albania.
Chelsea striker Olivier Giroud has been selected ahead of Martial despite having played just 211 minutes this season, with Tammy Abraham the first-choice striker at Stamford Bridge.
But Deschamps has defended his selection ahead of Thursday's European Qualifier with Moldova, saying he has full faith in World Cup winner Giroud.
"Maybe that means something but it's mostly what happened on the pitch that means something," he told a press conference. "If he is the one I used the most, do not forget either the ratio of matches and goals.
"There are not many in front of him in terms of goals in the history of the France team. He did the right thing, he answered the trust."
But he insists Martial still remains in his long-term plans. The forward has impressed for United since returning from two months out with a thigh injury, scoring three goals in seven games.
"He was part of the French team on a regular basis, but recently he was often injured," said Deschamps.
"He came back not so long ago and it's going well in his role as a central striker with Manchester United. For a long time he's been part of the players likely to be called up."
France are second in Group H, behind Turkey on goal difference. The reigning world champions will qualify for Euro 2020 from Group H if they beat Moldova, or if Iceland fail to win against Turkey.
Deschamps also expects Paris Saint-Germain's Kylian Mbappe to be fit despite the striker missing the 2-1 Ligue 1 win at Brest on Saturday with a muscle problem.
"Mbappe has not arrived yet, but will be there," he added. "There was communication between the two doctors on the fact it was a precaution.
"There was no particular concern compared to our Thursday deadline."
Moldova are bottom of the group, having won one of their eight games.