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Drogba out of Mandela Challenge

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Ivory Coast coach Francois Zahoui on Monday published a final roster for the Nelson Mandela Challenge against South Africa on November 12 without Chelsea’s forward Didier Drogba.

The Elephants captain will be rested for the event following a recent surgery he undertook to remove screws inserted in a previous operation from his arm.

The 19-man squad is composed of Ivory Coast’s top professionals including Arsenal’s Gervinho, the Toure brothers of Manchester City and Chelsea’s winger Salomon Kalou.

However, West Ham right-back Guy Demel was also sidelined, while New Castle’s Cheick Tiote and the team’s master dribble Kader KeÏta of Al-Saad were not summoned.

The Challenge is held annually to raise funds for the Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund. South African Football Association will donate a cheque of one-million-rand (€92 000) to the Fund.

The Ivorian coach intends to use the clash to put his house in order ahead of the looming 2012 African Cup of Nations.

Ivory Coast squad:
Goalkeepers: Boubacar Barry (Lokeren), Gnanhouan Gerard (Avranches), Daniel Yeboah (Asec)
Defenders: Benjamin Angoua (Valenciennes), Souleiman Bamba (Leicester), Emmanuel Eboue (Galatasary), Igor Lolo (Kuban), Siaka Tiene (PSG), Kolo Toure (Manchester City), Didier Zokora (Trabzonspor)
Midfielders: Jean-Jacques Gosso (Orduspor), Max Gradel (Saint-Etienne), Coulibaly Kafoumba (Nice), Didier Ya Konan (Hanover), Yaya Toure (Manchester City)
Forwards: Wilfried Bony (Vitesse), Seydou Doumbia (CSKA Moscow), Gervinho (Arsenal), Salomon Kalou (Chelsea)

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