Lionel Messi can play in Argentina’s opening World Cup qualifier next month because the statute of limitations has run out on the ban he was given during last year’s Copa America, the president of the Argentine Football Association (AFA) said on Thursday.
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Messi had been expected to serve the ban by missing Argentina’s qualifier against Ecuador that is scheduled to take place in Buenos Aires on Oct. 8.
who “confirmed the statute of limitations had expired and that he (Messi) is able to play,” the AFA twitter said.
The Barcelona forward was shown the red card after clashing with Gary Medel and afterwards he alleged the tournament had been fixed in favour of the hosts Brazil, who beat Argentina in a controversial semi-final on their way to claiming the title.
Argentina, who last won the World Cup in 1986, kick off their qualifying campaign with a double header at home to Ecuador and away to Bolivia.
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