March 18, 2019 / 1:43 AM / a month ago

France lose Martial, call up Lemar for Euro qualifiers

FILE PHOTO: Soccer Football - FA Cup Quarter Final - Wolverhampton Wanderers v Manchester United - Molineux Stadium, Wolverhampton, Britain - March 16, 2019 Manchester United's Anthony Martial in action with Wolverhampton Wanderers' Matt Doherty REUTERS/Andrew Yates/File Photo

PARIS (Reuters) - A knee problem has forced Manchester United forward Anthony Martial to withdraw from the France squad for this month’s Euro 2020 qualifiers against Moldova and Iceland, the French Football Federation (FFF) said on its website on Sunday.

Martial, who is struggling with his right knee, would be replaced by Atletico Madrid midfielder Thomas Lemar, it added.

The 23-year-old’s pull-out followed talks between national team doctors and United, for whom he played in a 2-1 loss at Wolverhampton Wanderers in the FA Cup sixth round on Saturday.

The FFF said Martial felt “severe pain” after the game and would miss France’s first two Euro 2020 qualifiers, away to Moldova on Friday and home to Iceland three days later.

He was recalled for the first time in a year after scoring 11 goals in 30 games in all competitions for United this term.

Writing by Ken Ferris; Editing by Peter Rutherford

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