Edgardo Bauza has pulled no surprises for his Argentina squad ahead of October’s World Cup qualifiers against Peru and Paraguay and as promised named largely the same group as the previous round of matches with the exception of Gonzalo Higuaín’s return.
The Juventus striker was left out of the first squad named by new coach Bauza at a time when he was being widely criticised for coming back from his vacation overweight.
Many Argentina supporters are still critical of the 28-year-old after a string of high-profile misses notably in major tournament finals but Higuaín has begun to show his deadly domestic form for Juventus and has done enough for Bauza to welcome him back.
#Eliminatorias La lista de convocados del exterior de Edgardo Bauza para los partidos ante Perú y Paraguay. pic.twitter.com/Ss0Lx6T9tl
— Selección Argentina (@Argentina) September 16, 2016
“He’s [Higuaín] happy. My talk with him was very good,” explained the Copa Libertadores winning coach.
“He is adapting to a new club [Juventus] with different requirements. He is much better now and when we last spoke he was excited about being summoned and participating in the national team.
“The other time we spoke it was a mutual agreement not to come as I said to him it is better to do well for your club.”
Sergio Agüero pulled out of the previous squad through injury but has recovered and been in sensational form under new Manchester City coach Pep Guardiola.
Bauza has hinted at the possibility of playing Higuaín and Agüero in a four-pronged attack with Lionel Messi and Ángel Di María presumably in the same 4-2-3-1 formation that he played against Uruguay with the recalled Juve striker replacing Lucas Pratto and Agüero in the withdrawn role where Paulo Dybala started.
“It is a possibility because they were all called but it depends how they arrive. After the first couple of training session we will see but the idea is to play with four players in attack,” El Patón confirmed.
The only other other change is the omission of Javier Pastore, who is still returning to full fitness with Paris Saint-Germain.
Bauza will add some Argentina based players to the squad on Tuesday with Lucas Alario and Mariano Andujar two that are expected to join up with the group.
Following the 2-2 draw with Venezuela last time out, Argentina face Peru on October 6th before hosting Paraguay in Córdoba five days later.