Messi called up for Argentina qualifiers despite injury

BUENOS AIRES: Argentina have called up Lionel Messi for their upcoming South American World Cup qualifiers despite him being on the injured list at his club Inter Miami.

Messi missed Inter's 4-1 defeat to Chicago on Wednesday as he continues to struggle with his fitness – he has played just 37 minutes for the club since Sept 3.

The 36-year-old has missed Inter's last three games and five of their last six.

Argentina host Paraguay on Oct 12 and then travel to play Peru five days later in CONMEBOL qualifiers for the 2026 World Cup.

Messi's Miami team-mate, 21-year-old winger Facundo Farias, has been called up to the national team squad for the first time. --AFP

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