Argentina leave out Aguero, Higuain and Di Maria after World Cup flop
Italian-based strikers Lautaro Martinez and Giovanni Simeone are among the 20 new faces in Argentina's squad for upcoming friendlies against Guatemala and Colombia, the Argentine Football Association (AFA) said on Friday.
Argentina's forward Sergio Aguero (R) takes part in a training session at the team's base camp in Bronnitsy, on June 25, 2018 on the eve of the team's third game as part of the Russia 2018
Martinez, who joined Inter Milan from Racing earlier this summer, and Simeone, the Spain-born striker who plays for Fiorentina, are included up front alongside Paolo Dybala, Angel Correa and Cristian Pavon.
Mauro Icardi, the Inter striker who was surprisingly left out of Argentina's World Cup squad, also returns, but there is no place for Gonzalo Higuain, Sergio Aguero or Angel Di Maria.
Lionel Messi was left out after requesting an unspecified time out from international duty.
Defenders: Fabricio Bustos (Independiente), Gabriel Mercado (Sevilla), German Pezzella (Fiorentina), Ramiro Funes Mori (Villarreal), Alan Franco (Independiente), Nicolas Tagliafico (Ajax), Walter Kannemann (Gremio), Leonel Di Plácido (Lanus), Eduardo Salvio (Benfica), Marcos Acuna (Sporting Lisbon).
Midfielders: Leandro Paredes (Zenit), Santiago Ascacibar (Stuttgart), Rodrigo Battaglia (Sporting Lisbon), Gonzalo Martinez (River), Giovani Lo Celso (PSG), Franco Cervi (Benfica), Maxi Meza (Independiente), Matias Vargas (Velez), Franco Vazquez (Sevilla), Exequiel Palacios (River).