Copa America 2024: Scaloni Says Only Messi and One Other Player Have Places Guaranteed

Copa America 2024: Scaloni Says Only Messi and One Other Player Have Places Guaranteed

Martin Moses
updated at March 27, 2024 at 11:22 AM
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  • Lionel Scaloni has handed 'direct' tickets to two players ahead of Copa America 2024
  • Argentina have been drawn in Group A as they seek to defend their title successfully
  • It is widely expected that this will be the last tournament for talisman Lionel Messi

Argentina head coach, Lionel Scaloni, has called on his players to step up and show him why they deserve a place in his squad for the upcoming Copa America tournament.

This year's tournament will take place in the United States from June 20 to July 14, with Argentina looking to retain the title they won in 2021.

Lionel Scaloni, Lionel Messi, Copa America 2024, Angel Di Maria, Argentina, World Cup 2022, Argentina vs Costa Rica.
Lionel Scaloni on the touchline during Argentina's game against Costa Rica on March 26. Photo by Kevork Djansezian.
Source: Getty Images

It was Messi's first international senior trophy after many years of trying and falling at the last hurdle. They beat Brazil at the Maracana in that final.

Fast forward, the Albiceleste have since added the World Cup trophy to their cabinet and will be strong favourites to retain the trophy.

Argentina's Copa America 2024 squad

Speaking after their 3-1 win over Costa Rica in a friendly game on March 26, Scaloni warned his players, insisting that only Lionel Messi had a guaranteed spot in the squad.

"In the world of football, one never knows. I guarantee a spot in the Copa América to none of those present here. Only to the one who didn't come [Messi]; the rest will have to sweat it out," he said, as quoted by AS.

The World Cup-winning coach, however, added another name alongside Messi's.

"Well, El Fideo [Di María] too. He also has it guaranteed."

Messi was not part of Argentina's squad for March friendlies due to a niggling muscle injury. The World champions beat El Salvador last week before the victory over Costa Rica.

When will Messi retire?

It is expected that the Copa America will be the last international outing for both Messi and Di Maria. Scaloni has, in the past, insisted that he would have Messi's position in the team open if he wanted to join in the next World Cup.

Argentina will face Peru, Chile and Canada in Group A.

Messi's favourite sports

Sports Brief has also reported that Messi has disclosed his favourite sports apart from football.

Messi has dedicated all his life to playing football, but the Argentine star has interests in other games as well.

He has admitted that he is learning about American football after moving to the United States last year.

Authors
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Martin Moses
Martin Moses is a sports journalist with over five years of experience in media. He graduated from Multimedia University of Kenya (Bachelor of Journalism, 2017-2021)