In their first World Cup qualifying matchup with Ecuador and Bolivia, Lionel Messi, the captain of Argentina, will play for the world champion team for the first time since joining Major League Soccer’s Inter Miami.
Standbys like defender Nicolas Otamendi and Angel Di Maria, who rejoined Benfica this season, are also included in coach Lionel Scaloni’s 32-man roster.
Young players Alan Velasco of FC Dallas, Bruno Zapelli and Lucas Esquivel of Athletico Paranaense in Brazil, and Lucas Beltran of Fiorentina in Italy will join them.
Paulo Dybala of AS Roma and Geronimo Rulli of Ajax Amsterdam were both ruled out due to injury.
On September 7, Argentina will face Ecuador in Buenos Aires before traveling to play Bolivia five days later.
Goalkeepers: Walter Benitez (PSV Eindhoven), Franco Armani (River Plate), Juan Musso (Atalanta), and Emiliano Martinez (Aston Villa).
Atletico Madrid’s Nahuel Molina, Real Betis’ German Pezzella, Nottingham Forest’s Gonzalo Montiel, Villareal’s Juan Foyth, Bournemouth’s Marcos Senesi, Manchester United’s Lisandro Martinez, Tottenham Hotspur’s Cristian Romero, Olympiacos Lyonnais’ Nicolas Tagliafico, Benfica’s Nicolas Otamendi, and Atletico Paranaense’s Lucas Esquivel are the defenders.
Midfielders: Alexis Mac Allister (Liverpool), Exequiel Palacios (Bayern Leverkusen), Leandro Paredes (AS Roma), Rodrigo De Paul (Atletico Madrid), Guido Rodriguez (Real Betis), Facundo Buonanotte (Brighton & Hove Albion), Enzo Fernandez (Chelsea), and Bruno Zapelli (Athletico Paranaense).
Forwards: Julian Alvarez (Manchester City), Alejandro Garnacho (Manchester United), Angel Di Maria (Benfica), Lionel Messi (Inter Miami), Alan Velasco (FC Dallas), Lautaro Martinez (Inter Milan), Angel Correa (Atletico Madrid), and Thiago Almada (Atlanta United)