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WC Qualification South America

  • October 11, 2013
  • • 19:00
  • • Estadio Monumental Antonio Vespucio Liberti, Capital Federal, Ciudad de Buenos Aires
  • • Attendance: 28977
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World Cup Qualifying Preview: Argentina - Peru

World Cup Qualifying Preview: Argentina - Peru

Alejandro Sabella - Argentina

With a spot in Brazil already assured, the Lionel Messi-less hosts will look to gather some more momentum against their already-eliminated visitors.

Argentina is without top goalscorers Lionel Messi and Gonzalo Higuain for Friday's World Cup qualifier with Peru, though qualification for next summer's tournament in Brazil is already assured.

Alejandro Sabella has a wealth of talent at his disposal for the South American qualification fixture, which will see his top-placed side entertain struggling Peru in Buenos Aires, even though three of his regulars have been forced to withdraw.

Captain Messi and his Barcelona teammate Javier Mascherano are both out of the clash at El Monumental with hamstring injuries, while Napoli striker Higuain is sidelined with a calf problem.

However, with the likes of Manchester City's Sergio Aguero, Real Madrid's Angel Di Maria and Paris Saint-Germain's Ezequiel Lavezzi all available, Sabella will be confident of maintaining his side's unbeaten home record in qualifying.

Meanwhile, Inter striker Mauro Icardi could make his international debut for Argentina after the 20-year-old was rewarded for his solid start to the new Serie A campaign with a first call-up.

Argentina leads the CONMEBOL table with 29 points from 14 matches, with Colombia its only realistic challenger for the top spot. Los Cafeteros are on 26 points with just two games remaining.

Argentina secured its place at Brazil 2014 with a 5-2 destruction of Paraguay in its previous qualifier on Sept. 11. Two Messi penalties and strikes from Aguero, Di Maria and Maxi Rodriguez were enough to ensure the country will compete for its third World Cup crown next year.

Meanwhile, Peru's hopes of reaching a first World Cup since 1982 were officially ended when it lost both of its September qualifiers against Uruguay and Venezuela.

Those results mean Sergio Markarian's charges have 14 points from as many games and can no longer reach fifth place, which would have earned an intercontinental playoff with Jordan in November.

Peru entered qualification with high hopes after a third-place finish in the 2011 Copa America, but it was were unable to continue that momentum and has collected just four wins throughout the campaign.

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12D. PennyGoalkeeper
-G. GambettaDefender
-N. DuarteDefender
-K. AparicioDefender
-E. GómezDefender
7Josepmir Ballón VillacortaMidfielder
6Juan VargasDefender
20Luis RamírezMidfielder
-P. HurtadoMidfielder
7A. CarrilloStriker
-Claudio PizarroStriker
-J. CarvalloGoalkeeper
-Salomon Alexis Libman PastorGoalkeeper
-O. ContrerasDefender
3Santi AcasieteDefender
-D. ChávezDefender
4A. AmpueroMidfielder
-E. RetamosoMidfielder
-C. BenaventeMidfielder
-Y. ReynaStriker
-Oscar VilchezMidfielder
-I. AvilaStriker

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