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Nov 17, 2018 at 12am UK
Argentina
2-0
Mexico
Funes Mori (44'), Brizuela (83' og.)
FT(HT: 1-0)
/esi/1339/6_G_1_86512/index.html?art_id=341667&game_id=86512&sport_id=1&ESI

Lionel Scaloni confident Lionel Messi will represent Argentina again

:Headline: Lionel Scaloni confident Lionel Messi will represent Argentina again:
The forward has not played for his country since the World Cup.
PA | 1y

Lionel Messi will play for Argentina again, according to interim coach Lionel Scaloni.

The Barcelona forward's continued absence dominated the build-up to Saturday's friendly with Mexico.

The 31-year-old has not played for Argentina since the World Cup, but there is a clamour for him to return in time for next summer's Copa America.

Scaloni told a media conference: "I did not talk to Messi about that.

"We discussed football, but we do not touch on issues that have to do with something that will happen in so many months.

"I estimate, wish and believe that he will return to the national team."

Scaloni named his starting XI for the first of two matches with Mexico in four days, with the only doubt over Tottenham defender Juan Foyth.

Inter Milan striker Mauro Icardi is expected to play in the second game.

"We had a setback: Juan suffered a cut in training and we have to wait to see if he can play," Scaloni added.

The line-up for the game at Estadio Mario Alberto Kempes in Cordoba is: Agustin Marchesin; Renzo Saravia, Foyth – or Gabriel Mercado – Ramiro Funes Mori, Nicolas Tagliafico; Angel Correa, Giovani Lo Celso, Leandro Paredes, Marcos Acuna; Paulo Dybala and Lautaro Martinez.

It will be Scaloni's fifth game as boss, after wins over Guatemala and Iraq, a goalless draw with Colombia and loss to Brazil.

Scaloni insists the performance against Brazil showed there is life after Messi.

"Before the match against Brazil they said that the result was important and I thought more about something else," Scaloni added.

"Luckily, there were players who showed they could play. When these six games are over there will be a range (of players) to choose from.

"I do not know who said there is nothing (to choose from), they were wrong. There are players.

"That generation has given a lot to the national team, played three finals and deserve just recognition.

"On the side of the under-20s we can say that there is good material."

Mexico defender Julio Cesar Dominguez says the team will be competitive against Argentina.

He told a press conference: "We are a team with quality, elite, which is why several of our team-mates are in Europe.

"We show it by representing our country in matches like these."

There are media reports that former Barcelona and Argentina boss Gerardo 'Tata' Martino will be appointed the next Mexico boss after leaving Atlanta United following the Major League Soccer season.

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Premier League Table
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Liverpool26251061154676
2Manchester CityMan City26173667293854
3Leicester CityLeicester26155654262850
4Chelsea2612594336741
5Tottenham HotspurSpurs2611784334940
6Sheffield UnitedSheff Utd2610972824439
7Manchester UnitedMan Utd2610883829938
8Wolverhampton WanderersWolves2681263532336
9Everton26106103438-436
10Arsenal2671363634234
11Burnley26104123039-934
12Southampton2694133248-1631
13Newcastle UnitedNewcastle2687112440-1631
14Crystal Palace2679102332-930
15Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton2669113138-727
16Bournemouth2675142640-1426
17Aston Villa2674153450-1625
18West Ham UnitedWest Ham2666143045-1524
19Watford2659122440-1624
20Norwich CityNorwich2646162448-2418
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