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Aguero keeps Argentina spot, Messi returns

Under-fire Sergio Aguero has kept his place in the Argentina squad for upcoming World Cup qualifiers against Brazil and Colombia, with Lionel Messi also returning.

Aguero has not scored in five qualifiers and missed a penalty in their poor 1-0 home defeat by Paraguay on October 12, with the Manchester City striker subsequently admitting he was feeling the threat of being dropped.

The 28-year-old has also had to contend with time on the bench at club level, with Pep Guardiola opting not to start him in City’s recent 4-0 defeat by Barcelona despite being fit.

However, Argentina boss Edgardo Bauza has retained faith in the former Atletico Madrid forward and he will be joined by a familiar face in Messi, who returns to the fold after missing the Paraguay loss and a 2-2 draw in Peru through injury.

Marcos Acuna and Julio Buffarini, of Racing Club and Sao Paulo respectively, are in line for their firs
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t caps, while Enzo Perez has received his first call-up under Bauza.

Erik Lamela, Matias Kranevitter and Marcos Rojo are among the more high-profile absentees, with Argentina facing Brazil in Belo Horizonte on November 11 and Colombia at home five days later.

Argentina squad in full
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Goalkeepers: Nahuel Guzman (Tigres Mexico), Sergio Romero (Manchester United) and Geronimo Rulli (Real Sociedad).
 
Defenders: Martin Demichelis (Espanyol), Mateo Musacchio (Villarreal), Nicolas Otamendi (Manchester City) Ramiro Funes Mori (Everton), Gabriel Mercado (Sevilla), Facundo Roncaglia (Celta de Vigo), Emanuel Mas (San Lorenzo) and Pablo Zabaleta (Manchester City).
 
Midfielders: Javier Mascherano (Barcelona),  Guido Pizarro (Tigres Mexico), Lucas Biglia (Lazio), Ever Banega (Inter), Enzo Perez (Valencia), Nicolas Gaitan (Atletico de Madrid), Ángel Di Maria (PSG), Julio Buffarini (San Pablo) and Marcos Acuna (Racing).
 
Strikers:  Angel Correa  (Atletico de Madrid), Lionel Messi (Barcelona),  Paulo Dybala (Juventus), Gonzalo Higuain (Juventus), Sergio Aguero (Manchester City) and Lucas Pratto (Atletico Mineiro).

Fri 21 Oct, 2016
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