On the 20th of this month, a national side consisting solely of players from the domestic league (which HEGS shall henceforth refer to as ‘Argentina B’) will take on Panama in Santa Fe. Diego Maradona announced the squad (including six Boca Juniors or Estudiantes players who won’t be involved unless their club have been eliminated from the Copa Libertadores by then) on Tuesday, and three players at least will be in their home stadium.
Sebastián Prediger of Colón, aged 22, is one of the central midfielders called up by Diego for the match in his own club’s ground. He’ll be joined by his Colón team-mates Alexis Ferrero and Diego Pozo. With most of the incorporations to the squad inevitably being younger players, Seba Verón will be one of the leaders of the group (if, of course, Estudiantes exit the Copa). Independiente’s Daniel Montenegro will provide some experience as well.
The squad in full:
Cristian Campestrini (Arsenal Fútbol Club)
Diego Pozo (Colón de Santa Fe)
Emiliano Papá (Vélez Sársfield)
Nicolás Otamendi (Vélez Sársfield)
Ignacio Canuto (Argentinos Juniors)
Matías Caruzzo (Argentinos Juniors)
Alexis Ferrero (Colón de Santa Fe)
Maximiliano Moralez (Vélez Sársfield)
Sebastián Blanco (Lanús)
Franco Zuculini (Racing Club)
Hernán Bernardello (Newell’s Old Boys)
Fabián Rinaudo (Gimnasia y Esgrima La Plata)
Daniel Montenegro (Independiente)
Sebastián Prediger (Colón de Santa Fe)
Mauro Fórmica (Newell’s Old Boys)
José Sand (Lanús)
Eduardo Salvio (Lanús)
Gonzalo Bergessio (San Lorenzo de Almagro)
Matías De Federico (Huracán)
Milton Caraglio (Rosario Central)
As well as these, there are three players each, as mentioned above, from Boca Juniors and Estudiantes de La Plata. The Boca contingent are defender Juan Forlín, midfielder Sebastián Battaglia and striker Martín Palermo, whilst Estudiantes’ representatives are goalkeeper Mariano Andújar, full back Marcos Angeleri and midfielder Juan Sebastián Verón.
Anyone tuning in expecting Argentines Abroad – it’ll be going up on Thursday, to take any contributions (or otherwise) from Señores Messi and Di Santo into account from Wednesday night’s European Cup semi-final second leg between Chelsea and Barcelona.