Lionel Scaloni Explains Why He Snubbed Mauro Icardi From Argentina's Copa América Squad
Argentina manager Lionel Scaloni has revealed why he left Mauro Icardi out of his 23-man squad for this summer's Copa América.
The Inter Milan striker has had a troubled season with the Italian side, whether it was being stripped of the club captaincy or contract talks breaking down.
With Argentina keen to put their disappointing run in last summer's World Cup behind them, Scaloni said that his decision not to select the 26-year-old Argentine wasn't driven by an off-pitch issue between the pair.
"Seeing as there's such a big pool of top players to choose from, it's normal that there are doubts," he said at a press conference.
"Keeping everyone happy is difficult, especially for a national team. The final decision is always for the good of the team.
"We met until we took a final decision. There were doubts along the way. There's never been any talk of denying someone a call-up.
"We named the squad without closing our doors to anyone. I'm sorry for those not on the list.
"We wanted to call up more, but we had to pick 23 players and make a decision."
Icardi might be linked with a move to Juventus, but the player's agent and wife, Wanda Nara, reiterated that he wants to remain at the San Siro.
"I'm tired of repeating that he wants to stay at Inter. I'll turn my phone off on the first day of the transfer window. There have been offers, but Icardi's staying at Inter. That's it," she said on Tiki Taka.
"The best teams have contacted him, the best coaches want him, but Mauro believes he's staying at Inter, regardless of who their coach will be. Everyone wants him. According to what [Inter Milan boss Luciano] Spalletti says, it's Inter who don't want him."
The Argentina international's current deal expires in 2021, but his contract includes a €110m release clause that becomes active for a two-week time frame, running from 1st July until 15th July.
Posted below is a reminder of Scaloni's 23-man squad for Argentina.
Goalkeepers: Esteban Andrada (Boca Juniors), Franco Armani (River Plate), Agustín Marchesín (América).
Defenders: Renzo Saravia (Racing), Juan Foyth (Tottenham Hotspur), Nicolás Otamendi (Manchester City), Germán Pezzella (Fiorentina), Ramiro Funes Mori (Villarreal), Nicolás Tagliafico (Ajax), Milton Casco (River Plate), Marcos Acuña (Sporting CP).
Midfielders: Exequiel Palacios (River Plate), Guido Rodríguez (América), Leandro Paredes (Paris Saint-Germain), Giovani Lo Celso (Real Betis), Roberto Pereyra (Watford), Rodrigo De Paul (Udinese), Ángel Di María (Paris Saint-Germain).
Forwards: Lionel Messi (Barcelona), Sergio Agüero (Manchester City), Lautaro Martínez (Inter Milan), Matías Suárez (River Plate), Paulo Dybala (Juventus).
This year's Copa América will be held in Brazil and runs from 14th June to 7th July, with the host nation also announcing their squad for the competition.
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Featured Image Credit: PA