"It's confirmed that he will play" - Argentina coach Lionel Scaloni confirms Lionel Messi's presence against Brazil

Lionel Messi looks set to play for Argentina against Brazil.
Lionel Messi looks set to play for Argentina against Brazil.

Argentina coach Lionel Scaloni has confirmed that captain and talismanic forward Lionel Messi will play in La Albiceleste's match against Brazil. The South American rivals will take each other on later tonight (November 16).

Speaking ahead of his side's match with Brazil, Scaloni said (as quoted by Marca):

"The other day he [Lionel Messi] was good on a physical level, but we decided that in the end it would be best for him to play a few minutes and get a good feeling."

The Argentina coach added:

"For tomorrow [referring to the Brazil game], it's confirmed that he will play, so we hope he feels good."

Lionel Messi managed to play 14 minutes during Argentina's 1-0 win at the Estadio Campeón del Siglo in Uruguay. La Albiceleste were able to seal that game thanks to Angel di Maria's goal in the seventh minute.

The win meant Argentina moved up to 28 points from 12 matches in the CONMEBOL Qualifying Zone for the 2022 FIFA World Cup. Messi and co. are second in the table, only behind arch-rivals Brazil.

It's 🇦🇷Argentina vs 🇧🇷Brazil today. Football makes you forget about all problems, doesn't it?🙏

A win tonight would take Argentina to within three points of the Selecao, and would also hand Brazil their first defeat in the CONMEBOL Qualifiers. Tite's side have injury concerns of their own, with prodigious forward Neymar Jr. set to miss the game with a thigh injury.

Meanwhile, Messi's return will be a massive boost for La Albiceleste. The Paris-Saint Germain forward has scored six goals during Argentina's unbeaten qualifying campaign (eight wins, four draws).

Lionel Messi and Argentina last met Brazil in victorious Copa America 2021 final

Argentina and Brazil's meeting tonight will be their first clash since the Copa America 2021 final on July 11. Lionel Messi and co. emerged victorious in that game to secure La Albiceleste's first major title since 1993.

Angel di Maria scored the winner in that game, chipping the ball over Ederson in the 22nd minute from a Rodrigo de Paul pass. Messi was largely subdued in that game, but had a stellar tournament overall. The talismanic forward scored five goals and assisted four as Argentina broke their duck.

Argentina haven't lost a single game since July 3rd, 2019.They are unbeaten in their last 26 games 👏

Lionel Messi has also largely spearheaded an Argentina side that are unbeaten in their last 26 matches. Scaloni's side last lost to Brazil in the 2019 Copa America semi-finals on July 3, 2019. Since then, Argentina have collected 18 wins and eight draws and will look to extend their unbeaten run against the Selecao tonight.

Edited by Shourjo Chatterjee
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