Messi to miss Scotland date

October 14, 2008

Argentina star Lionel Messi will not face Scotland at Hampden, the South American country's football federation have confirmed.

Barcelona have successfully lobbied for Messi to sit out the friendly international on November 19, having reluctantly released him for the Olympics in August.

The SFA had signed a deal for Argentina's full squad to come to Glasgow, but their visitors have decided to withdraw 21-year-old Messi.

"After our negotiations with Barcelona, we have come to the conclusion we must take care of Messi," a spokesman for the AFA said.

"So that means he is excused for the friendly matches against Scotland in November and France in February. It is common sense.

"However, Messi is the only Argentina player who will be given permission not to play."

• Scotland's next World Cup qualifier will take place in the Amsterdam Arena, the Dutch FA have confirmed.

Holland hosted Iceland in Rotterdam on Saturday but the KNVB today announced their game against Scotland would take place in Amsterdam on Saturday, March 28.

The match will kick off at 7.45pm UK time.