Argentina predicted squad for Copa America 2024: Projected final roster of Lionel Messi’s side at CONMEBOL tournament

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Argentina are enjoying a golden age, as the current World Cup champions and holders of the Copa America.

As FIFA’s highest-ranked national team, they’ll yet again have Lionel Messi, an eight-time Ballon d’Or winner, as their captain when they head to the United States this summer to defend the latter trophy.

While it appears as though everything is in place for them to run away with the special edition of the Americas competition, Brazil and Uruguay will have plenty to say about that.

It’s expected to be a somewhat ageing squad that shoulders the burden of their challenge, although fresh young talent is also coming through β€” and the mix of the two could prove to be the winning formula for coach Lionel Scaloni again.

The Sporting News predicts Argentina’s 23-man squad for the tournament, and takes an early look at who may start their opening game.

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MORE: Key dates and schedule for Copa America 2024

Argentina predicted squad for Copa America 2024

Lionel Messi has the chance to defend Argentina’s Copa America title, and will play some matches from what is now his home state in the United States.

Argentina enter the tournament as the favorites, and are expected to cruise out of Group A and then plot a path to glory once again, especially with Brazil seemingly off the pace and without Neymar due to injury.

Who’s definitely in?

Messi β€” and this is another major competition where he will feel he can add to his trophy cabinet. Of course, Argentina won the title back in 2021 but why have one when you can have two to your name?

The only uncertainty around his involvement will be his injury record, as he’s seen some troubles in that department since the turn of the year. But, when it comes to playing for his country, you get the feeling nothing will be able to stand in his way.

Elsewhere on the pitch, barring injury Emi MartinezEnzo Fernandez and Alexis Mac Allister are certainly going to be involved in the squad. They have consistently played this season in the Premier League and have been vital to their national team in previous years β€” especially Martinez, whose penalty saves won the World Cup.

Angel Di Maria and Nicolas Otamendi are veterans of the national side, and will once again be there to spearhead the challenge.

Julian Alvarez is the other nailed-on attacker alongside Messi, as he’s already gone past the landmarks of 15 goals and 10 assists in all competitions this season for Man City.

MORE: Why Julian Alvarez is so vital to Man City?

Whose place is at risk?

Giovani Lo Celso has struggled for game time under Ange Postecoglou at Tottenham this season. Despite gathering nearly half a century of caps for his national side, he has played a only a handful of minutes so far throughout the entire campaign leading up to a major tournament.

Lisandro Martinez of Manchester United would almost certainly be included in the squad had he not spent a large chunk of the season out injured. The 26-year-old has been unavailable for more than 30 matches due to a foot injury in the first half of the season and a knee injury that followed.

The United defender was called up to the squad for the March internationals, however, his place could still be at risk if the injury isn’t resolved. 

Who could be a wildcard pick?

Facundo Buonanotte of Brighton could be one to keep an eye on, as he received his first call-up for the Argentina senior squad in 2023 for friendly matches against Panama and Curacao. He made his senior debut in a 2-0 win against Indonesia.

The 19-year-old midfielder has seen an increase in minutes this season for the Seagulls and caught the eye when scoring an important goal against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge earlier in the season.

Predicted full Argentina squad for Copa America 2024

Here is our predicted Argentina squad for Copa America 2024.

Ages, caps are correct as of March 18, 2024.

Position Player Club Age Caps
GK Emiliano Martinez Aston Villa (ENG) 36 31
GK Franco Armani River Plate (ARG) 37 19
GK Geronimo Rulli Ajax (NED) 31 4
DEF Cristian Romero Tottenham Hotspur (ENG) 25 28
DEF Nicolas Otamendi Benfica (POR) 36 109
DEF Lisandro Martinez Manchester United (ENG) 26 16
DEF Nicolas Tagliafico Lyon (FRA) 31 55
DEF Marcos Senesi Bournemouth (ENG) 26 1
DEF Valentin Barco Brighton (ENG) 19 0
DEF German Pezzella Real Betis (SPA) 32 39
DEF Nahuel Molina Atletico Madrid (SPA) 25 35
MID Enzo Fernandez Chelsea (ENG) 23 19
MID Alexis Mac Allister Liverpool (ENG) 25 23
MID Rodrigo De Paul Atletico Madrid (SPA) 29 60
MID Giovani Lo Celso Tottenham Hotspur (ENG) 27 48
MID Facundo Buonanotte Brighton (ENG) 19 1
MID Leandro Paredes Roma (ITA) 29 58
FWD Paulo Dybala Roma (ITA) 30 38
FWD Angel Di Maria Benfica (POR) 36 136
FWD Alejandro Garnacho Manchester United (ENG) 19 3
FWD Julian Alvarez Manchester City (ENG) 24 28
FWD Lionel Messi Inter Miami (USA) 36 180
FWD Lautaro Martinez Inter Milan (ITA) 26 54

Predicted lineup for Argentina’s first Copa America 2024 match

Argentina start their Copa America 2024 campaign against Canada, who qualified from the playoffs, on Thursday, June 20 at the Mercedes Benz Stadium in Atlanta. Kickoff is at 8:00 p.m. local time ET.

Argentina projected starting lineup (4-3-3, right to left): Martinez (GK) β€” Molina, Romero, Otamendi, Tagliafico β€” Fernandez, Mac Allister, De Paul β€” Alvarez, Messi, Di Maria.

When is the Argentina squad announced for Copa America 2024?

While coaches can announce their squad whenever they like, it has to be named before June 12, 2024, according to CONMEBOL’s official rules. 

MORE: Will Messi win the MLS Golden Boot?

Argentina Copa America 2024 fixtures

Date Opponent Stadium
June 20, 2024 Argentina vs Canada Mercedes Benz Stadium
June 25, 2024 Chile vs Argentina MetLife Stadium
June 26, 2024 Argentina vs Peru Hard Rock Stadium

COPA AMERICA 2024 TICKETS: Click here for cheapest seats at Argentina matches

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