World Cup news

Argentina name star-studded squad

March 8, 2013
By ESPN staff

Argentina boss Alejandro Sabella has named a full-strength side for the upcoming World Cup qualifiers against Venezuela and Bolivia later this month.

Lionel Messi revealed in November that he intended to vote for Sergio Aguero, as well as Xavi and Andres Iniesta, for this year's Ballon d'Or
AssociatedLionel Messi and Sergio Aguero will form a potent attack for Argentina

Lionel Messi leads the Albicelestes' attack, which also includes Manchester City's Sergio Aguero, Ezequiel Lavezzi of Paris Saint-Germain and Real Madrid duo Gonzalo Higuain and Angel Di Maria - who will miss the first match due to suspension.

Monterrey defender and captain Jose-Maria Basanta is the surprise name in the 21-man foreign-based squad. Basanta, who plays in the Mexican league, was reportedly close to gain the naturalisation to play for the Mexico national team, but Sabella attended Monterrey games and decided to include the player in the list.

Argentina squad: Sergio Romero (Sampdoria), Mariano Andujar (Catania); Federico Fernandez (Getafe), Hugo Campagnaro (Napoli), Pablo Zabaleta (Manchester City), Marcos Rojo (Sporting Lisbon), Ezequiel Garay (Benfica), Jose-Maria Basanta (Monterrey); Javier Mascherano (Barcelona), Ever Banega (Valencia), Jose Sosa (Metalist), Pablo Guinazu (Libertad), Walter Montillo (Santos), Augusto Fernandez (Celta), Angel Di Maria (Real Madrid); Lionel Messi (Barcelona), Gonzalo Higuain (Real Madrid), Rodrigo Palacio (Inter Milan), Sergio Aguero (Manchester City), Franco Di Santo (Wigan), Ezequiel Lavezzi (Paris Saint-Germain).