‘I am not worried that he is angry’: Argentina boss Lionel Scaloni hits back at Angel di Maria after the PSG star demanded he drop fellow veterans Lionel Messi and Sergio Aguero after being left out of latest squad
- Argentina coach Lionel Scaloni has hit back at Angel Di Maria who snubbed him
- Di Maria didn’t make the Argentina squad for games against Ecuador and Bolivia
- He then called for Scaloni to drop both Messi and Aguero for younger players too
- Scaloni has said the team ‘works without’ him and he isn’t worried about Di Maria
Argentina boss Lionel Scaloni has hit back at Angel di Maria after the Paris Saint-Germain forward criticised his latest national team selection.
The 32-year-old was not included in the squad for next month’s World Cup qualifiers against Ecuador and Bolivia as Scaloni is said to be keen on bringing through younger players.
As a result, Di Maria suggested that the likes of Lionel Messi, 33, and Sergio Aguero, 32, should be dropped too. However, Scaloni has since responded showing little remorse for his decision to leave out Di Maria and include his counterparts.
Argentina’s Lionel Scaloni has hit back at Angel Di Maria who snubbed his selection decision
Defending his selection decision, Scaloin said: ‘I am not worried that he is angry.
‘I appreciate it and value it, but after the Copa America, in those six games, the team worked without him.
‘The team works without Di Maria and I am not going to use him.
‘He is not part of this call, but he is not outside the national team.’
Di Maria’s last international cap came in July 2019 when he played in the third place play-off in the Copa America.
Di Maria, who has made 102 appearances for Argentina, did enjoy an excellent season with PSG, scoring 12 goals and contributing 23 assists as they reached the Champions League final.
Di Maria has been left out of the squad for next month’s games against Ecuador and Bolivia
Di Maria said Aguero and Messi should also be dropped if Scaloni wishes to play youngsters
The 32-year-old expressed his frustrations at being excluded, telling Clos Continental: ‘I can’t find an explanation, I have no words. For me, Argentina is the best.
‘At my club it’s to try to have a chance with the national team and compete. It’s difficult to understand that being in good form, I’m not called up.
‘If I’m not called, it’s because they don’t want me, but I will keep fighting to be in the team.
‘I’m old at 32? If we start to think about replacements, we should do it with everyone.
‘For that, Messi, Aguero and Nicolas Otamendi shouldn’t go and others who are in great form.
Di Maria believes he is in ‘good form’ and says he ‘can’t find an explanation’ for his exclusion
‘Many say that I’m old but I still run the same way and I can be at the same level as Kylian Mbappe and Neymar.
‘I’ve been in good form for 18 months and haven’t been called up. I’ll continue to show that I’m capable of being in the squad.
‘I wish with all of my soul to wear the shirt again. Every time I play a good game or become a better player, I only think about being called up.
‘It’s true I’ve been involved for 12 years but it’s my dream and I want to be included.’