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Argentina release final Copa squad

Copa America Centenario: Argentina exclude a few stars from 23-man squad

May 21, 2016 By Ali M.
Captain Leo was an expected exclusion, but there was no room for “the next Messi”.

Late on Friday, South American powerhouse Argentina released the final list for the upcoming Copa America Centenario tournament which kick starts next month, trimming down their provisional squad to only 23 names.

Of course, there were the expected inclusions to La Albiceleste’s team, with captain and five-time Ballon d’Or winner Lionel Messi making the cut after overcoming an injury-plagued season to help Barcelona win La Liga and retain their league crown over rivals Real Madrid. 

In addition, PSG ace Angel Di Maria was also named, having helped Les Parisiens to yet another Ligue 1 crown, whilst Serie A top-scorer Gonzalo Higuain and Man City hitan Sergio Aguero all got the nod.

However, there were some surprise names left out of the final squad, with Juventus superstar Paulo Dybala leading the list of high-profile players to receive the axe despite his putting in a wonderful 2015/16 debut campaign with the Old Lady to help them win a 5th consecutive Scudetto title.

Team roster - Argentina's 23-man squad in full

  • Goalkeepers: Sergio Romero (Manchester United), Nahuel Guzmán (Tigres), Mariano Andujar (Estudiantes)
  • Defenders: Marcos Rojo (Manchester United), Facundo Roncaglia (Fiorentina), Nicolas Otamendi (Manchester City), Ramiro Funes Mori (Everton), Victor Cuesta (Independiente), Gabriel Mercado (River), Jonatan Maidana (River) 
  • Midfielders: Javier Mascherano (Barcelona), Augusto Fernández (Atlético Madrid), Matías Kranevitter (Atlético Madrid), Éver Banega (Sevilla), Lucas Biglia (Lazio), Erik Lamela (Tottenham), Javier Pastore (Paris Saint Germain).
  • Forwards: Lionel Messi (Barcelona), Gonzalo Higuaín (Napoli), Sergio Agüero (Manchester City), Ángel Di María (Paris Saint Germain), Nicolás Gaitán (Benfica), Ezequiel Lavezzi (Hebei Fortune).

Another high-profile exclusion was Carlos Tevez, as the Boca Juniors striker will watch the ceremonial competition from home. However, unlike Dybala omission, this one was expected, as the former Juve man was also left out of both the 2014 World Cup and played only a supporting role in the 2015 Copa America.

Other names to miss out on Gerardo Martino’s squad were Martin Demichelis and Ezequiel Garay, two key figures in FIFA’s top ranked nation’s journey to the World Cup final in Brazil.

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