France: Diaby not out of play-off yet

CLAIREFONTAINE - France midfielder Abou Diaby has not been ruled out of their World Cup playoff against Ireland despite his Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger's assessment that he would be sidelined for three weeks.

"The tests he underwent this morning were satisfactory. He still needs treatment but he is not out [of the play-off]," French federation spokesperson Francois Manardo told reporters on Tuesday. "He is staying with us (at the training camp)."

France visit Croke Park on Saturday before taking on Ireland at the Stade de France the following Wednesday.

On Sunday, French TV channel TF1 quoted Wenger saying Diaby would be sidelined for three weeks because of a calf injury.

Diaby was replaced after 23 minutes in Arsenal's 4-1 win at Wolverhampton Wanderers in the Premier League on Saturday.

Wenger and France coach Raymond Domenech have had a difficult relationship, with the pair famously at odds over the fitness of then Arsenal striker Thierry Henry in 2007.

Henry's season ended prematurely that year because of groin and stomach injuries, with Wenger pinning the blame on Domenech for overworking the France forward.