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Sampaoli cuts Icardi from 23-men list

Sampaoli names Argentina's 23-man squad with questionable omissions

May 21, 2018 By Oscar Rojas
Coach Jorge Sampaoli cut his previous list to fit FIFA's rules, leaving some top-caliber footballers out of the competition.

Lionel Messi's World Cup squad is ready to go, but coach Jorge Sampaoli didn't escape controvers when naming the 23 men that will play for Argentina's pride this summer.

The former Chile boss trimmed down the original 35-men list from last week, leaving some top-caliber names home. Sampaoli needed to leave one goalkeeper out, but the team's main absences fall in the goalscoring department.

Sampaoli decided to play it safe, and left Inter Milan's striker Mauro Icardi out. The player's relationship with the rest of the team wasn't the best, which forced the tactician to leave one of Serie A's top scorers out of the list despite his numbers.

Other major names left out included Láutaro Martínez, Sevilla's Guido Pizarro, Enzo Pérez and Everton's Ramiro Funes Mori.

Sampaoli elaborated on his decisions during a press conference earlier today.

"We understand that these players have the skills we can use. In time, we will make the most of their desire to play and our understanding of the game. I have high hopes for this team, and every time I see them train , our dreams get bigger," Sampaoli stated.

This is Argentina's roster for the 2018 World Cup.

Goalkeepers: Wilfredo Caballero, Franco Armani, Nahuel Guzmán.

Defenders: Gabriel Mercado, Cristian Ansaldi, Nicolás Otamendi, Federico Fazio, Marcos Rojo, Nicolás Tagliafico, Marcos Acuña.

Midfielders: Javier Mascherano, Eduardo Salvio, Lucas Biglia, Giovani Lo Celso, Ever Banega, Enzo Pérez, Maximiliano Meza, Ángel Di Maria, Cristian Pavón.

Strikers: Lionel Messi, Sergio Agüero, Gonzalo Higuaín, Paulo Dybala.

"Russia 2018 is here! These are the 23 men elected by Jorge Sampaoli to represent the Argentinean National Team in the upcoming World Cup."


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