Kanoute leads Mali squad


Goalkeeper Soumbeyla Diakite from Stade Malien and Djoliba's Souleymane Dembele and Amadou Sidibe were called up by coach Jean Francois Jodar.

All three have previously been capped by Mali but were missing from a provisional squad of 28.

According to a report on BBC Sport, the squad is dominated by the Spain-based trio of Frederic Kanoute, Seydou Keita and Mahamadou Diarra. Sevilla striker Kanoute is one of the five candidates for the BBC African Footballer of the Year award

Jodar has also recalled AJ Auxerre defender Sammy Traore, whose last game for Mali was in October 2006. Mali, who have been drawn in Group B with Benin, the Ivory Coast and Nigeria, start a training camp in the United Arab Emirates on Monday.

They play Egypt in a friendly there on January 10 and Iran three days later, according to the Mali Football Federation.

Their opening game at the Nations Cup finals in Ghana is against Benin in Sekondi on January 21.

The squad named is:

Goalkeepers: Soumbeyla Diakite (Stade Malien), Mahamadou Sidibe (PAS Giannina, Greece), Oumar Sissoko (Metz)

Defenders: Adama Coulibaly (Lens), Moussa Coulibaly (Mouloudia Alger), Souleymane Diamoutene (Lecce), Cedric Kante (Nice), Boubacar Sidiki Kone (Maghreb Fes), Amadou Sidibe (Djoliba), Adama Tamboura (Helsingborg), Sammy Traore (AJ Auxerre)

Midfielders: Souleymane Dembele (Djoliba), Drissa Diakite (Nice), Mahamadou Diarra (Real Madrid), Seydou Keita (Sevilla), Djibril Sidibe (Chateauroux), Momo Sissoko (Liverpool), Bassala Toure (Levadiakos, Greece)

Strikers: Mamadou Diallo (Qatar SC), Mahamadou Dissa (Roeselare, Belgium), Frederic Kanoute (Sevilla), Mamady Sidibe (Stoke City), Dramane Traore (Lokomotiv Moscow).