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International football

Messi returns to Argentina squad as Agüero misses out

BREAKING NEWS: Messi returns to Argentina squad as Aguero misses out

Getty Images

The Barcelona captain has not played for his country since the World Cup, but the five times Ballon d'Or is in the Albiceleste's latest international squad.

Lionel Messi is back in the Argentina squad for the first time in almost nine months, although Sergio Agüero has been left out.

Messi has not played for his country since the 2018 World Cup, where Jorge Sampaoli's side lost to eventual winners France in the last 16.

Sampaoli's successor Lionel Scaloni has been unable to call upon the Barcelona captain for any of Argentina's matches since taking charge.

But Messi will soon make his international return as he is in the Argentina squad for upcoming friendly matches against Venezuela and Morocco.

There is no room for Agüero, however, with Scaloni favouring Lautaro Martínez, Giovanni Simeone and Dario Benedetto over the Manchester City star.

Inter striker Mauro Icardi also misses out, as he has not played for his club since February 9 amid a stand-off that began with him being stripped of the captaincy.

Gonzalo Higuaín is another high-profile attacking omission. Like Agüero, Chelsea's on-loan Juventus striker has not been involved for the Albiceleste since Russia 2018.