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Mascherano urges Dybala to follow Messi's act following debut red for Argentina

Argentina veteran Javier Mascherano has told Paulo Dybala to use Lionel Messi's international debut as an example to follow after his red card against Uruguay.

On his first start for La Albiceletse, Dybala was sent off just before half-time in his side's 1-0 victory in World Cup qualifying on Thursday, leaving the pitch in tears.

Similarly, Messi saw red on his international debut in a 2005 clash against Hungary at the age of 18, before going on to become Argentina's all-time top goalscorer.

And Mascherano has urged Dybala to take heart from Messi's exploits as he attempts to bounce back for Edgardo Bauza's side.

"I told him the same thing had happened to Messi when he started in the national team," he said.

"And look how it went afterwards."

Messi was the match-winner for Argentina as his deflected strike just before the break proved enough in Mendoza.

The Barcelona star had announced his international retirement immediately after the Copa America Centenario final loss in June, only to reverse that decision.

And Mascherano admitted to thinking of doing likewise and hanging up his boots, saying: "Yes, I spent a lot after losing the final.

"I thought maybe not to come [back], but I started thinking what am I going to do? Will I stay in my house?"

A groin injury will see Messi miss Argentina's next qualifier – a trip to Venezuela on Tuesday.