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Take a Look: Carlos Tevez and the Returning Argentina Players

Take a Look: Carlos Tevez and the Returning Argentina Players

Posted by Juan Gavasa on October 31, 2014

Argentina's preparations for the 2015 Copa America in Chile continue. Having taken on Brazil and Hong Kong in a short Asian tour during October, England will be the next port of call for the globe-trotting Albiceleste. A clash against Croatia in London is followed by a meeting with Cristiano Ronaldo and Portugal in his former stamping ground of Old Trafford.

There are plenty of familiar faces in the Argentina squad. New coach Gerardo Martino has kept faith with the majority of the players who battled to the World Cup final under predecessor Alejandro Sabella. But a number of players have been welcomed back into the fold, most notably Juventus striker Carlos Tevez.

Cristian Ansaldi

It is curious that despite struggling to fill the full-back positions over the years, Argentina have barely ever called on a talented player suitable for either side of the pitch.

Perhaps Cristian Ansaldi's decision to ply his trade in Russia, where he was a mainstay for Rubin Kazan, worked against him, as successive coaches overlooked his obvious ability.

Likewise, a loan move to Liga champions Atletico Madrid has put the 28-year-old back in the spotlight. His last call-up was for a friendly in 2013 against Sweden, where he did not see action, but coach Gerardo Martino evidently sees Ansaldi as an alternative for Marcos Rojo out on the left side of defence.

Federico Fazio

Federico Fazio's only experience with the Argentinian national team came in a period most fans would like to forget. The central defender featured in a depleted B, arguably C squad that, while the senior players were preparing for the Copa America, went on an ill-fated tour of Nigeria and Poland.

A 4-1 hammering against the Africans and a slightly narrower 2-1 defeat in Warsaw marked a dead end for most of the players involved in the series. Promising talents such as Jonathan Cristaldo, Marco Ruben and goalkeeper Adrian Gabbarini subsequently fell off the radar for the Albiceleste, while Fazio was left to plug away in Spain, awaiting a second chance.

Now that chance has arrived. A high-profile move to England with Tottenham Hotspur has put Fazio in the spotlight, and with Martino clearly happy to try out new faces in the centre of defence, a good performance on the England tour would leave the ex-Ferro man in a good position to consolidate his international career.

Willy Caballero

If nothing else, goalkeeper Willy Caballero should feel at home as he ends a long spell away from the Albiceleste. The former Malaga star will have Manchester City companions Sergio Aguero, Pablo Zabaleta and Martin Demichelis alongside him, and November's game against Portugal will take place just down the road from the Etihad Stadium in Manchester United's Old Trafford ground.

A string of inspired performances in Andalusia had heightened calls for Caballero to enter the international set-up, resisted by Alejandro Sabella in his time on the Argentina bench. One has to look all the way back to 2005 and Jose Pekerman's Confederations Cup list to find the last time he was included in any type of international squad.

At 33 years old, the shot-stopper has the chance to make his senior debut for the Albiceleste, and finally prove that he is a valid option for next year's Copa America.

Carlos Tévez

After falling out of favour with former coach Sergio Batista, Carlos Tevez received a sensational reprieve prior to the 2011 Copa America as he pushed his way back into the squad. Replacement Alejandro Sabella, however, declined to pick the Juventus hitman for a single squad in his three-year tenure.

A poor performance in that Copa America, in which Carlitos missed the decisive penalty against Uruguay that sealed Batista's fate in the quarter-finals, appeared to have turned the Albiceleste hierachy against the controversial striker. But under another new coach, Martino, Tevez will have another chance.

Tevez will end a 40-month exile from the international set-up in November's double-header, and according to the coach will battle with Sergio Aguero and Gonzalo Higuain to start one or more of the games, per Football Italia.

It is a massive chance to prove he can play alongside Lionel Messi, and one he cannot afford to squander.

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