I am trying to find the list item based on the contents in the anchor.

I tried using the following xpath

//li/a[contains(., 'India')]

It is working for unique items, But here, it is matching more than one item.

I want to ignore the the other contents in anchor and only focus on the anchor text to identify the li. How can i achieve it?

   <li style="display: list-item;"><a href="#"><img src="1" class="flag">&nbsp;Afghanistan</a></li>
   <li style="display: list-item;"><a href="#"><img src="2" class="flag">&nbsp;India</a></li>
   <li style="display: list-item;"><a href="#"><img src="3" class="flag">&nbsp;British Indian Ocean Territory</a></li>

PS: Tried the following, it works. But later if the position of "&nbsp ;" changes, it's going to fail.


1 Answer 1


Using normalize-space() was a good idea but it would not handle &nbsp; by definition. You can do two things:

  • translate a non-breaking space entity into a regular space
  • compare the full string value of a node with a desired string

Final XPath:

//li/a[normalize-space(translate(., '&#160;', ' ')) = 'India']

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