Lionel Messi has no place in Argentina’s Olympic football team

Lionel Messi will not be part of Argentina’s football team at the Olympics starting in Paris later this month. Coach Javier Mascherano named four members of his World Cup-winning team in the squad announced on Tuesday, including striker Julian Alvarez and defender Nicolas Otamendi.

Messi, 37, who has struggled with injuries this year, is currently representing Argentina at the Copa America, with the team aiming to defend the continental title it won in 2021.

Argentina also won the World Cup in 2022 after winning the Copa America in 2021. Messi helped the team win the gold medal in Beijing in 2008 in his only Olympic campaign.

The Olympic men’s football tournament is for under-23 teams but each team is allowed to play three overage players. Mascherano, who won Olympic gold medals as a player in 2004 and 2008, will join goalkeeper Geronimo Rulli, Otamendi and Alvarez in the squad after the Copa America ends.

Midfielder Claudio Etcheverry, who recently joined Manchester City from River Plate, will also join the team. Argentina will play two friendly matches in France before its first match of the Olympic football tournament against Morocco on July 24. Apart from Argentina and Morocco, Iraq and Ukraine have got place in Group B.

Disclaimer: CricketInFocus has not edited this news. This news has been published from PTI-language feed.

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