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Lionel Messi back for Argentina’s World Cup duel with Brazil

Lionel Messi scored a hat-trick for Barcelona in the Champions League clash against Manchester City

football Updated: Oct 22, 2016 14:00 IST
Lionel Messi,Argentina,Brazil
Lionel Messi suffered a thigh injury which kept him out of Argentina’s last three international fixtures.(Reuters)

Lionel Messi was named in Argentina’s squad for their heavyweight World Cup clash against bitter rivals Brazil on Friday having missed the last three fixtures through injury.

Messi had been sidelined from international duty with a thigh injury but buoyed by a midweek hat-trick for Barcelona in the Champions League against Manchester City, he returns to an Argentina team struggling in fifth spot in World Cup qualifying.

Only the top four sides are guaranteed a place in the finals in Russia in 2018 with the fifth-place finishers facing a play-off.

Without Messi, Argentina drew with Venezuela and Peru and lost 1-0 at home to Paraguay.

They face Brazil in Belo Horizonte on November 10 before hosting Colombia in San Juan five days later.

Argentina squad:

Goalkeepers: Nahuel Guzmán , Sergio Romero, Geronimo Rulli

Defenders: Martín Demichelis, Mateo Musacchio, Nicolás Otamendi, Ramiro Funes Mori , Gabriel Mercado, Facundo Roncaglia, Emanuel Mas, Pablo Zabaleta.

Midfielders: Javier Mascherano , Guido Pizarro, Lucas Biglia , Ever Banega, Enzo Pérez, Nicolás Gaitán, Ángel Di Maria, Julio Buffarini, Marcos Acuña .

Attackers: Ángel Correa , Lionel Messi , Paulo Dybala and Gonzalo Higuaín, Sergio Agüero, Lucas Pratto .

First Published: Oct 22, 2016 14:00 IST