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Injuries and suspension has not deterred Argentina’s national coach, Alejandro Sabella from calling on the services of Real Madrid winger Angel Di Maria. Sabella has called the winger up for the Albiceleste’s forthcoming World Cup 2014 qualifiers against Venezuela (22nd March) and Bolivia (26th March), despite the fact that Angel Di Maria is suspended for the first game and expected to need at-least two weeks to recover from the injury he sustained in Madrid’s Champions league clash with Manchester United.
Argentina are currently leading the South American group with 20 points from 9 match days There are seven games left to play. The top four teams (of the nine in the group) will qualify for the finals in Brazil next summer. Argentina are among the early favourites to win the World Cup and the strength of their squad shows you why.
Here’s the complete list of players called up by Sabella:
Goalkeepers: Sergio Romero, Mariano Andujar
Defenders: Fede Fernandez, Hugo Campagnaro, Pablo Zabaleta, Marcos Rojo, Ezequiel Garay, José Basanta.
Midfielders: Javier Mascherano, Ever Banega, José Sosa, Cholo Guiñazú, Walter Montillo, Agusto Fernandez, Angel Di Maria.
Forwards: Lionel Messi, Gonzalo Higuaìn, Rodrigo Palacio, Sergio Aguero, Franco Di Santo and Ezequiel Lavezzi.
In other news, Real Madrid boss appeared in front of press ahead of their travel to Municipal de Balaidos to face Celta vigo and addressed various issues including the dressing room situation and injury updates.
About the mod in the dressing room, he said:
“We work to get the best performance out of our players. When things go bad, people always speak of the mood in the camp and now we are winning, everything is calm. We isolate ourselves from it all and we’ll continue working well.”
Changes in the team: “We play games to win them. The team that comes out tomorrow with be a strong one that are out to win. But at the same time, Varane Ramos and Coentrao have played in all of the recent games and deserve to rest. There are also other players that deserve to play.”
On Marcelo: “He’s a young player who has been through a lengthy and serious injury. It has affected him a little and he needs some joy, but right now he is training much better and he has already played. He is important for the final run of the season.”
On Pepe: “He is and will continue to be a very important player. He’s just come off the back of an injury and has helped Varane a lot. He is playing in different positions and his attitude is commendable. He’s extremely important to the team.”
Diego López and Casillas: “We already knew Diego so we’re not surprised [by his performances]. He has come to strengthen the squad and he has played some extremely important games. We want Iker back [to fitness] as soon as possible and in the best form possible, so that the coach can put out the best there is. He has shown in the last two and a half years that he has not played for his status but for being the best there is.”
Against Celta: “It will be a complicated game and more so because it comes after a run of matches that we’ve had that have required all our strength physically and mentally. We have to maintain the form we’ve been in.”