Didier Drogba shock omission from Ivory Coast squad

Galatasaray striker Didier Drogba is a shock omission from Ivory Coast's 28-man squad for the World Cup qualifier against Gambia next weekend.

The Ivorians listed the players who will be involved in the tie in Abidjan on their federation's website without giving a reason for the former Chelsea player's absence.

Five other players involved in the Africa Cup of Nations at the start of the year have also been left out by coach Sabri Lamouchi.

Galatasaray defender Emmanuel Eboue, Real Zaragoza midfielder Romaric, and Dijon goalkeeper Daniel Yeboah all miss out, as do Paris St Germain full back Siaka Tiene and Kuban Krasnodar defender Igor Lolo.

Drogba was dropped by Lamouchi for one match at the Nations Cup but both denied there was any tension between the two men.

The Ivorians were the favourites to win in South Africa but were knocked out at the quarter-final stage by eventual champions Nigeria.

Drogba, 35, was short of match fitness in South Africa after having a brief stint in Chinese football but has since helped Galatasaray qualify for the European Champions League quarter-finals.

The Ivorians lead World Cup Group C with four points from two games. Tanzania are second with three points, Morocco have two and Gambia are bottom on one point.