Souare back in Senegal squad after life-threatening car crash

Pape Souare
Pape Souare has a chance to prove his fitness for Senegal ahead of the World Cup in Russia.

Crystal Palace left-back Pape Souare, who suffered a life-threatening car crash in 2016, has been named in the Senegal squad to face Uzbekistan and Bosnia and Herzkgovina in friendlies this month.

The defender has made a full recovery from the crash in London, where he had to be airlifted to hospital by paramedics.

The 27-year-old, who broke his thighbone and jaw in the accident, was quick to express his joy at being back in the national team.

"Delighted to be called up to the national team. It's been a while since I have been able to represent my country but I am back now and I cannot wait to get back on the pitch," Souare tweeted.

Souare's inclusion gives him a chance to prove his fitness, having only featured three times for struggling Palace this season as a substitute in cup games.

Coach Aliou Cisse has also recalled Stoke City's utility player Mame Biram Diouf, former Sunderland and Chelsea defender Papy Djilobodji and Armand Traore of Cardiff City.

Star players Sadio Mane, Idrisa Gana Gueye, Keita Balde and Ismaila Sarr have also been named in the 30-man squad, which was released on Wednesday in Dakar.

The Teranga Lions will face Uzbekistan in Morocco on 23 March before playing Bosnia and Herzegovina four days later in France, as the 2002 World Cup quarter-finalists look to prepare for this summer's finals in Russia.

Senegal will play further friendlies in May against Luxembourg before concluding their World Cup preparations with another friendly against Croatia in Zagreb on 8 June.

The Teranga Lions will begin their World Cup Group H campaign against Poland on 19 June in Moscow before they play Japan on 24 June and then Colombia four days later.

Squad:

Goalkeepers: Abdoulaye Diallo (Rennes), Alfred Gomis (SPAL), Khadim Ndiaye (Horoya), Pape Seydou Ndiaye (Diaraf Dakar)

Defenders: Fallou Diagne (Metz), Papy Djilobodji (Dijon), Lamine Gassama (Alanyaspor), Kalidou Koulibaly (Napoli), Youssouf Sabaly (Bordeaux), Pape Souare (Crystal Palace), Armand Traore (Cardiff City), Moussa Wague (Eupen)

Midfielders: Assane Diousse (St Etienne), Idrissa Gueye (Everton), Cheikh Kouyate (West Ham United), Alfred Ndiaye (Wolverhampton Wanderers), Pape Alioune Ndiaye (Stoke City), Cheikh Ndoye (Birmingham City), Henri Saivet (Sivasspor), Salif Sane (Hannover 98)

Forwards: Keita Balde (Monaco), Mame Biram Diouf (Stoke City), Moussa Konate (Amiens), Sadio Mane (Liverpool), Santy Ngom (Nantes), Mbaye Niang (Torino), Oumar Niasse (Everton), Diafra Sakho, Ismaila Sarr (both Rennes), Moussa Sow (Bursaspor).

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