New coach Jacques Santini will be missing seven members of France’s World Cup squad for his debut in charge against Tunisia on August 21.

Santini, whoguided Lyon to the French league title last season, was appointed last month after Roger Lemerre’s dismissal following France’s disastrous campaign in Korea and Japan.

The 1998 holders were eliminated in the first round after losing to Senegal and Denmark, failing to score even one goal.

Christophe Dugarry, Youri Djorkaeff and Bixente Lizarazu had already ruled themselves out of further national team involvement but other significant absentees include goalkeeper Fabien Barthez, Frank Leboeuf, Johan Micoud and Juventus striker David Trezeguet.

Santini has responded to French football’s expectations of a new beginning by calling up, for the first time, highly-rated under-21 internationals Philippe Mexes, Anthony Reveillere, Bruno Cheyrou and Sidney Govou.

Even so, his 22-strong squad still features 14 foreign-based players.

By Keir Radnedge