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Doha (AFP) – Argentine national team coach Lionel Scaloni hinted on Wednesday, after the friendly victory over the UAE 5-0 in Abu Dhabi, that an amendment could be made to the 26-strong squad for the Qatar World Cup, which begins on Sunday.
After the 36th consecutive match without defeat, Scaloni told the Spanish newspaper “Sport”, “There is a possibility to make changes to the squad of 26 players for the World Cup. We will see what happens.”
Scaloni justified this by saying, “There are players who are not 100 percent ready. We want to be careful and see how they develop.”
National teams have the right to make a change to the finals squad 24 hours before the first match, and Scaloni will have to make his decision 24 hours before the world champions’ match with Saudi Arabia on Tuesday in Group C, which includes Mexico and Poland.
Doubts were surrounding Paulo Dybala’s presence in the finals squad due to an injury that kept him away from his Italian team, Roma, for a month, before he recorded his return on Saturday, with his participation in the last quarter of an hour of the domestic league match against Turin (1-1).
There are also some doubts about the readiness of the other striker, Nicholas Gonzalez (Fiorentina, Italy) and defender Marcos Acuña (Sevilla, Spain), who participated in Wednesday’s match against the UAE before being substituted early in the second half.
Argentina, led by its star Lionel Messi, is considered one of the most prominent teams to win the world title for the first time since 1986 and the third in its history, especially after its performance in the South American qualifiers for the finals and its crowning of the Copa America 2021 title.
© 2022 AFP
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