World Cup 2022: Lionel Messi is joined by five Premier League players in Argentina squad

Lionel Messi and Julian Alvarez
Argentina play their opening game in Group C against Saudi Arabia on November 22

Paris Saint-Germain’s Lionel Messi will play in his fifth World Cup final as part of an Argentina squad featuring five Premier League players.

Coach Lionel Scaloni has combined veterans such as Messi, 35, and Angel di Maria, 34, with younger players such as Manchester City striker Julian Alvarez.

Injured Roma striker Paulo Dybala, 28, also gets the nod despite not playing since October 9.

Argentina’s first game in Group C is against Saudi Arabia on November 22.

They will also face Poland and Mexico.

Aston Villa goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez, Tottenham Hotspur’s Christian Romero, Manchester United’s Lisandro Martinez and Brighton midfielder Alexis McAllister complete the Premier League squad.

There is no place for Manchester United winger Alejandro Garnazzo, 18, who was called up to the senior squad for the first time in March but is yet to earn his first cap.

Dybala’s inclusion caused the biggest surprise. The former Juventus forward was expected to miss the tournament after suffering a horrific thigh injury while taking a penalty for Roma. Dybala had been in excellent form prior to this, scoring in five consecutive games.

Argentina, who won the Copa America title last year, are on a 35-match unbeaten streak. They last won the World Cup in 1986 and finished runners-up in 1990 and 2014.

“They are all proud to be selected and wear this jersey,” said Scaloni of those selected.

The Argentina team

Goalkeepers: Emiliano Martinez (Aston Villa), Franco Armani (River Plate) and Geronimo Rulli (Villarreal)

Defenders: Gonzalo Montiel (Seville), Nahuel Molina (Atletico Madrid), German Pezela (Real Betis), Christian Romero (Tottenham), Nicolas Otamendi (Benfica), Lisandro Martinez (Manchester United), Juan Foith (Villarreal), Nicolas Tagliabico (O. Lyonnais), Marcos Acuna (Seville)

Means: Leandro Paredes (Juventus), Guido Rodriguez (Real Betis), Enzo Fernandez (Benfica), Rodrigo De Paul (Atletico Madrid), Exequiel Palacios (Bayer Leverkusen), Alejandro Gomez (Sevilla), Alexis McAllister (Brighton & Hove Albion)

Front: Paulo Dybala (AS Roma), Lionel Messi (Paris St Germain), Angel Di Maria (Juventus), Nicolas Gonzalez (Fiorentina), Joaquin Correa (Inter Milan), Lautaro Martinez (Inter Milan), Julian Alvarez (Manchester City).

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