Lionel Scaloni announced that Lionel Messi is set to return to action for Argentina in November once his suspension is finally over.
Messi is currently serving a three-month ban from Argentina after publicly accusing the South American football body, CONMEBOL, of “corruption”.
It came following the second red card of his career in an ill-tempered third-place play-off match between Argentina and Chile in the Copa America. At the time, the referee gave the Barcelona man his marching orders due to a bust-up with Chile captain Gary Medel.
And Messi didn’t take it too kindly and later refused to collect his bronze medal after Argentina’s win. He later explained to reporters that he didn’t want to “be part of this corruption”.
The five-time Ballon d’Or winner then sensationally suggested the match officials and VAR would favour hosts Brazil in the final against Peru. Of course, Tite’s men did emerge comfortable 3-1 winners in that game.
So, a furious CONMEBOL slapped Messi with a three-match suspension for his comments.
Although the 32-year-old would likely have skipped the last two international breaks anyway due to his injury troubles at Barcelona.
But it turns out Scaloni expects to welcome back his captain and Manchester City’s Sergio Aguero for next month.
“Messi is not here due to suspension,” said the Argentina boss in a press conference.
“Sergio Aguero is not here because he’s been carrying a problem and has not been training 100 per cent with his club.
“Surely both will be here next month.”
La Albiceleste, who fought back from a two-goal deficit to draw 2-2 with Germany on Wednesday, will meet Ecuador this afternoon in another friendly.
And Scaloni made the interesting move in already naming his starting line-up for the clash in. Although he didn’t give away the formation he plans to use.
Goalkeeper: Agustin Marchesin
Defenders: Juan Foyth, German Pezzella, Walter Kannemann
Midfielders: Marcos Acuna,Nicolas Gonzalez, Rodrigo De Paul, Leandro Paredes, Lucas Ocampos,
Forwards: Lucas Alario, Lautaro Martinez.
The Ecuador and Argentina friendly starts at 16:00 (CET).