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Gael Clichy earns first international call-up as Arsenal players prepare for friendlies

France coach Raymond Domenech has finally woken up and given Gael Clichy his first call-up to the France squad.

I usually loathe international football, but I'll make an exception in this case as the Emirates Flyer is my favourite player in an Arsenal shirt right now and the fact that he has not been recognised by his country before, beggars belief.

However, Domenech must be starting to notice what us Gooners have been witnessing for the past year - Clichy is one of the best left backs on the planet. Not only can he extinguish any threat closing in on the Arsenal goal, but he can swiftly turn his defensive role into spearheading a Gunners attack, with his lightning pace ripping apart many an opposing player.

Gael will join team mates William Gallas, Bacary Sagna, Abou Diaby and Mathieu Flamini for the French squad that faces the Democratic Republic of Congo and Spain next week.

Gilberto will be hoping for a rare starting role when he travels to Ireland with his Brazilian team mates next week.

Nacer Barazite, who dislocated his shoulder in the Carling Cup tie against Blackburn in December, has returned strongly following that set-back and his eight goals in seven youth game starts, plus four strikes in nine games for the reserves have earned him a place in the Holland Under-19s squad that travels to Scotland next week.

The Pole in the goal, Lukasz Fabianski has been selected for his nation's squad to face the Czech Republic in an international friendly on February 6. The match will be played in Cyprus.

Tomas Rosicky may line up against Fabianski, but the midfielder said earlier this week that he probably will not feature in the game as he is suffering from a hamstring injury. But as the Czech captain, he may well travel to cheer on his countrymen.

Meanwhile, Eduardo will try to add to his impressive international goals tally when Croatia host Holland. The Brazilian-born striker has scored 13 goals in 21 games for his adopted country, making him one of the top marksmen in Europe.

No doubt other Gunners will be called up to their international squads during the next few days - Cesc Fabregas is an obvious choice that springs to mind - so I'll endeavour to keep you posted about how they fare with their countrymen next week. Hopefully they'll all return injury free for a change.

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Posted by Gordon Masson on February 1, 2008 9:30 AM in News| Players
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With a bit of luck his call up will upset Evra, but apart from that, although good news for Gael, not great for the Arsenal!!

Posted by: Glen | February 1, 2008 9:54 AM

IM a fan of arsenal and i love all the players

Posted by: gavin | July 29, 2008 12:57 PM

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