Lemerre's leeway for Bayern duo

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The France coach Roger Lemerre has given special dispensation for the Bayern Munich pair Bixente Lizarazu and Willy Sagnol to miss next month's trip to Australia.

The Melbourne match, on 11 November, has caused a rumpus in Europe with English clubs insisting their players should not have to travel.

Sagnol and Lizarazu will not be involved as Lemerre feels it wrong that they should have to make the long journey and then go with Bayern to Japan for the Intercontinental Cup final later in the month, where they will play Boca Juniors.

Arsenal and Chelsea have written to the French Football Federation, asking Lemerre to leave out Robert Pires, Sylvain Wiltord, Thierry Henry, Patrick Vieira, Marcel Desailly and Emmanuel Petit.

Meanwhile the French league could employ police disguised as sportsmen at future high-risk games, following Saturday's violent outbreak at the Stade de France.

In France's match against Algeria, fans of the Algerians invaded the pitch in the 73rd minute and later fought with police. The match was subsequently abandoned.