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Page last updated at 13:13 GMT, Friday, 22 May 2009 14:13 UK

Mali face Samassa disappointment

Marseille striker Mamadou Samassa
Marseille's Mamadou Samassa has been called up to the Mali squad

Mali have included Marseille striker Mamadou Samassa in their squad for two 2010 World Cup qualifiers next month.

His inclusion comes despite the fact the 23-year-old has played for France at junior level and is unlikely to get the necessary clearance to play for the Eagles.

Samassa was in a squad of 25 players named by coach Stephen Keshi for qualifiers against Ghana and Benin in Bamako in June.

Fifa has confirmed that it has received an application from the Mali Football Federation for a switch of nationality for the striker, whose parents come from the country.

Samassa's application is likely to be rejected because Fifa regulations state that a player seeking to switch his international allegiance must do so before his 21st birthday.

Players who have competed for one country at junior level may represent another if they qualify for the nationality of the new country and are under 21.

Mali have benefited from the rule in the past, persuading former French junior internationals such as Frederic Kanoute and Momo Sissoko to play for them.

Both of those players are also in the squad for the Group D matches on 7 and 21 June.



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Nigeria in another call-up clanger
27 Apr 09 |  African
Kanoute makes Mali debut
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Kanoute considers Mali career
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Nigeria refuse to give up on Cole
29 Aug 08 |  African
Nigeria make Cole call-up blunder
05 Aug 08 |  African


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