CONAKRY, Jan 3 (Reuters) - Sambegou Bangoura and Ibrahima Yattara have been left out of Guinea's 23-man squad for this month's African Nations Cup finals, named by coach Robert Nouzaret in Conakry on Thursday.
Sambegou, a former Stoke City striker now playing at Boavista in Portugal, and Turkish-based Yattara are surprise omissions following Nouzaret's decision last month to leave former Arsenal and Olympique Marseille striker Kaba Diawara out of a preliminary list of 35.
'I had a list of 35 players and I was obliged to cut my choice down to only 23,' he told Reuters in a telephone interview.
'Those that I kept have given me more satisfaction than the players I have had to drop.'
'I know that we will be up against teams that are stronger than us on the paper but we are not going to the Nations Cup to make up the numbers,' he added.
Only one of the squad members, back-up goalkeeper Naby Diarso, comes from a club within the west African country. Veteran goalkeeper Kemoko Camara is unattached and 19 players are from European-based clubs.
Guinea meet hosts Ghana in the tournament's opening match in Accra on Jan. 20. Their other first round opponents are Morocco and Namibia.
Guinea reached the quarter-finals of the last Nations Cup tournament in Egypt two years ago.
Goalkeepers: Kemoko Camara (unattached), Naby Diarso (Satellite FC), Naby Yattara (RACS Couillet, Belgium)
Defenders: Dianbobo Balde (Celtic), Habib Jean Balde (Reims), Alseny Camara (Rodez), Ibrahima Camara (Le Mans), Kevin Constant (Toulouse), Mohamed Alimou Diallo (Sivasspor), Daouda Jabi (Trabzonspor), Oumar Kalabane (Manisaspor), Kamil Zayatte (Young Boys Berne)
Midfielders: Mohamed Cisse (Bursaspor), Pascal Feindouno (St Etienne), Samuel Johnson (Ismaili), Mohamed Sacko (Etoile Sahel), Naby Soumah (CS Sfaxien), Kanfory Sylla (Sivasspor)
Strikers: Ismael Bangoura (Dynamo Kiev), Karamoko Cisse (Verona), Victor Correa (Cherbourg), Fode Mansare (Toulouse), Souleymane Youla (Lille).