The pair are rumoured to have a less than friendly relationship, and both wear the captain's armband in the nations' first meeting since that unforgettable 2002 World Cup clash
There were no surprises in the Europeans' forward line as the Paris Saint-Germain striker was picked and given the captain's armband, as Sweden look for the goals that would make them the first team to beat a full Argentina side since Venezuela back in September 2011. Albiceleste fans will also be looking with interest at another name on the team-sheet.
Anders Svensson, who scored the free-kick that dumped Marcelo Bielsa's men out of the 2002 World Cup at the group stage, makes his 138th appearance at the age of 36, the first time he will play against the South Americans since that clash in the Miyagi Stadium.
Messi, meanwhile, forms one-third of what has become the first-choice attacking trident for Argentina, alongside Real Madrid's Gonzalo Higuain and Sergio Aguero of Manchester City. Indeed, the only change from the side that last represented the Seleccion competitively is positional: Pablo Zabaleta moves to the right side of defence, swapping with Hugo Campagnaro in an effort to bolster the backline on the left.
Sweden (4-3-2-1): Isaksson; Lustig, J.Olsson, Granqvist, M.Olsson; Svensson, Källström; S.Larsson, Ibrahimovic, Kacaniklic; Hysen
Argentina (4-3-3): Romero; Zabaleta, Garay, Fernandez, Campagnaro; Mascherano, Gago, Di Maria; Messi, Higuain, Aguero.