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Riquelme returns to Argentine squad

  • Reuters, Friday, August 19, 2011 5:09 AM

Classy playmaker Juan Roman Riquelme, who last played for Argentina three years ago after refusing to play under Diego Maradona, has been recalled by Coach Alejandro Sabella to prepare for two friendlies against archrival Brazil next month.

Sabella also brings back Juan Sebastian Veron, who has not played for Argentina since the 2010 World Cup, into a squad of home-based players.

Sabella named another squad made up of European-based players for matches in Asia, leaving out controversial striker Carlos Tevez, but recalling 2006 World Cup midfielder Lucho Gonzalez and 2010 defenders Jonas Gutierrez, Martin Demichelis and Nicolas Otamendi. The 26-man squad of exiles does include Lionel Messi, Gonzalo Higuain and Sergio Aguero among the strikers.

Argentina’s European-based team will play Venezuela in Calcutta on Sept. 2 and Nigeria in Dhaka four days later. The home-based team will meet Brazil at home on Sept. 14 and away two weeks later.

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