Argentina coach Sergio Batista says his Barcelona star Lionel Messi has recovered from a knee injury picked up in the Spanish league last weekend and will be ready to play upcoming friendlies against United States and Costa Rica.
Batista said he had talked with Messi and had been assured the world's best player was ready to go.
Argentina will play the United States on March 26 in East Rutherford, New Jersey, and Costa Rica on March 29 in a new stadium in San Jose.
Batista also said that starting goalkeeper Sergio Romero of AZ Alkmaar in the Netherlands would miss the matches. He said the club notified Argentine officials, although Batista did not explain why Romero would be absent.
He said Mariano Andjuar of Italian club Catania would start in goal and Agustin Marchesin of Argentine club Lanus would be the backup.
Players from Argentine club Arsenal de Sarandi have returned home after spending part of the night in cells after a bizarre confrontation with Brazilian police at the end of a Copa Libertadores match.