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Argentina explain why they haven’t been using Lionel Messi’s No.10 shirt

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Lionel Scaloni says it was his decision

France v Argentina: Round of 16 - 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia Photo by Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images

Argentina’s interim coach Lionel Scaloni has explained why they haven’t been using Lionel Messi’s No.10 shirt during their international friendlies.

Messi is missing from the squad after reportedly deciding to take a break from national team duty.

Yet Argentina are not using his No.10 shirt for games against Guatemala and Colombia, and Scaloni has explained the reasoning behind their decision.

“There is only one answer for your question: every player who was in the World Cup kept his number, the ones who came here,” he said.

”In this time, the 10 shirt belongs to Messi and it will stay this way until he decides if he will continue with us or not.

”We aren’t closed to that chance so I chose to keep this number for him. In the future we will see, but if you look at the players who played the World Cup you will see they kept their numbers, and we wait for the future to see what happens, but so far no one is using the 10 because it is exclusive for him and that is my decision. There is nothing else about this.”

Source | Goal

Argentina beat Guatemala 3-0 in their first match without Messi thanks to goals from Gonzalo Martinez, Giovani Lo Celso and Giovanni Simeone.