Argentina Announce Their Squad For The World Cup
Lads, Lionel Messi is in!
That's basically all Argentina might need to win the World Cup. Of course the Barcelona superstar has so far failed to inspire his country to winning an international tournament but he has taken them to three finals and you wouldn't bet against them reaching a fourth.
It's the only stick left to beat Messi with. Whilst Cristiano Ronaldo won the Euros with Portugal in 2016, although he didn't have that much impact on the pitch, Messi is without an international tournament with.
In 2014, 2015 and 2016 they reached finals in the World Cup and Copa America. The first was a loss to Germany in extra time and the next two both came against Chile and both on penalties.
After the latter Messi decided to call it a day internationally but he was soon back and after a poor qualifying campaign threatened to see them miss out he scored a last day hat-trick against Ecuador to get them to Russia.
Whilst his selection is hardly newsworthy the absence of Inter Milan forward Mauro Icardi will raise some questions, the Serie A striker has put away 29 goals in the league this season but misses out:
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It's not actually a shock that Icardi has missed out, despite firing Inter into the Champions League for the first time in six years, the 25 year old has only been given four caps by his country.
Argentina's forward line is hardly looking short of goals without Icardi as Gonzalo Higuain, Sergio Aguero, Paulo Dybala and Boca Juniors Cristian Pavon join Messi in the squad.
Despite the recent finals losses Jorge Sampaoli's side will no doubt be one of the favourites to win the tournament but their group isn't an easy one and they'll have to be on top form to qualify and then avoid a probable 2nd round match with France by qualifying top.
The South American's won the World Cup at home in 1978 and then again eight years later in Mexico when they infamously knocked out England in the quarter final through Maradona's incredible goal and 'hand of God.'
Can Messi finally put his demons to rest and win the World Cup?