The 36-year-old Messi has missed five of Miami’s past six matches, including a 4-1 defeat to Chicago Fire FC on Wednesday that put its prospects of reaching the MLS Cup playoffs at significant risk. The 3-0 victory against Bolivia on September 12 was another game the Argentina skipper had to miss.
Even though he has been out for two weeks with a leg injury for club team Inter Miami CF, Lionel Messi was selected on Thursday for Argentina’s next two World Cup qualifying matches.
The entire Argentina team:
Defenders: Walter Bentez (PSV Eindhoven), Juan Foyth (Villarreal), Gonzalo Montiel (Nottingham Forest), Nahuel Molina (Atletico Madrid), Germán Pezzella (Real Betis), Cristian Romero (Tottenham), Lucas Martnez Quarta (Fiorentina), Nicolás Otamendi (Benfica), Marco Pellegrino (AC Milan), Marcos A
Goalkeepers: Emiliano Martnez (Aston Villa), Franco Armani (River Plate), and Juan Musso (Atalanta).
Forwards: Paulo Dybala (Roma), Lionel Messi (Inter Miami), Julián Alvarez (Manchester City), Lautaro Martnez (Inter Milan), Facundo Faras (Inter Miami), Lucas Beltrán (Fiorentina), Alejandro Garnacho (Manchester United), Nico González (Fiorentina), Lucas Ocampos (Sevilla), Lucas Beltrán (Fiorentina), Lucas Beltrán (Fior)
Midfielders: Leandro Paredes (Roma), Guido Rodrguez (Real Betis), Enzo Fernández (Chelsea), Rodrigo de Paul (Atletico Madrid), Exequiel Palacios (Bayer Leverkusen), Carlos Alcaraz (Southampton), Giovani Lo Celso (Tottenham), Alexis MacAllister (Liverpool), and Thiago Almada (Atlanta)
Streaming on ESPN+: LaLiga, Bundesliga, and more (US)
Argentina and Brazil are the only teams in CONMEBOL to have a perfect 2-0 record in World Cup qualification. visit Peru on October 17 after playing Paraguay in Buenos Aires on October 12.
Messi has scored 11 times in 12 games for Inter Miami. The squad is undefeated while he is on the field, with a record of 8-0-4. Seven of those victories came during the run to the Leagues Cup title, the club’s first major honor, and another came in the U.S. Open Cup semifinals. Since Messi’s arrival, Inter Miami has gone 1-3-2 in its six matches played without him.
Messi’s most recent appearance was in his team’s encounter against Toronto on Sept. 20, during which he was replaced at halftime because of the recurrence of a leg ailment that first returned in a 1-0 victory over Ecuador on Sept. 7.
Miami coach Gerardo Martino remarked of Messi after Chicago’s defeat, “Barcelona missed him, and the Argentine team missed him,” referring to the loss of the team. “Of course, we’re going to miss the best player in the world.”