BUENOS AIRES: Argentina coach Gerardo Martino named his 23-man squad for the Copa America on Friday (Saturday in Manila), pinning his hopes on Lionel Messi and Sergio Aguero but ignoring Carlos Tevez.
Idolized by his Boca Juniors club and popular throughout Argentina, Tevez was overlooked in favour of Gonzalo Higuain who smashed a record 36 goals in Serie A this season with Napoli.
Argentina are looking for a first major international title in 23 years having lost two recent finals — to Germany at the 2014 World Cup and against Chile in last year’s Copa America.
This year’s Copa America Centenario, marking the 100th anniversary of the South American confederation Conmebol, will be played in the United States from June 3-26.
It will feature four teams from the Concacaf region including the United States and Mexico.
Argentina are in Group D at the tournament and face Chile (June 6), Panama (June 10) and Bolivia (June 14).
Goalkeepers: Sergio Romero (Man Utd/ENG), Nahuel Guzman (Tigres Monterrey/MEX), Mariano Andujar (Estudiantes La Plata)
Defenders: Gabriel Mercado (River Plate), Facundo Roncaglia (Fiorentina/ITA), Nicolas Otamendi (Man City/ENG), Jonathan Maidana (River Plate), Ramiro Funes Mori (Everton/ENG), Marcos Rojo (Man Utd/ENG), Víctor Cuesta (Independiente).
Midfielders: Matias Kranevitter, Augusto Fernandez (Atletico Madrid/ESP), Javier Mascherano (Barcelona/ESP), Ever Banega (Sevilla/ESP), Lucas Biglia (Lazio/ITA), Javier Pastore (Paris Saint-German/FRA), Erik Lamela (Tottenham/ENG).
Attackers: Angel Di Maria (PSG/FRA), Ezequiel Lavezzi (Hebei Fortune/CHN), Lionel Messi (Barcelona/ESP), Sergio Agüero (Man City/ENG), Gonzalo Higuain (Napoli/ITA), Nicolas Gaitan (Benfica/POR).