(Reuters) – Argentina coach Lionel Scaloni has recalled Sergio Aguero to his squad for the Copa America after having frozen out the Manchester City striker since taking over from Jorge Sampaoli after the World Cup.
Scaloni also retained Paulo Dybala in his 23-man squad named on Tuesday, despite the Juventus forward’s lean season with the Italian giants.
There was no spot for Inter Milan striker Mauro Icardi, who was again passed over after his season was interrupted for nearly two months due to a bitter contract dispute with the Serie A club.
The 30-year-old Aguero, who scored 21 goals as City completed an unprecedented English treble by winning the Premier League and two domestic cups, rejoins talisman Lionel Messi and Angel Di Maria in an Argentina team eager for silverware after crashing out of the World Cup’s last 16.
The three veterans are among nine players retained from Sampaoli’s squad at Russia.
Messi returned to the Argentina fold in March to play in the 3-1 defeat to Venezuela.
He will be keen to make amends at the Copa America after firing wide during the penalty shootout loss to Chile in the last final in 2016.
That defeat, which prompted Messi to retire from international football only to return later, was a carbon copy of the 2015 decider, when Argentina lost to hosts Chile in another penalty shootout.
Argentina, who will meet Colombia, Paraguay and Qatar in Group B, have reached the final in four of the past five tournaments dating back to 2004 but lost them all.
Their last success in the continental competition was in 1993, when they beat Mexico 2-1 in the final, which was also their last piece of major international silverware.
Argentina play a farewell friendly on June 7 against Nicaragua in the western province of San Juan before heading to the June 14-July 7 Copa America in Brazil.
They open the tournament against Colombia on June 15 in Salvador.
Goalkeepers – Franco Armani, Agustin Marchesin, Esteban Andrada
Defenders – Juan Foyth, Nicolas Otamendi, German Pezzella, Nicolas Tagliafico, Ramiro Funes Mori, Renzo Saravia, Marcos Acuna, Milton Casco
Midfielders – Leandro Paredes, Guido Rodriguez, Giovani Lo Celso, Exequiel Palacios, Roberto Pereyra, Rodrigo De Paul, Angel Di Maria
Forwards – Lionel Messi, Sergio Aguero, Lautaro Martinez, Paulo Dybala, Matias Suarez
(Editing by Ian Ransom)