Friday September 7 2018
Icardi: 'Show Argentina my best'

Inter hitman Mauro Icardi shrugs off criticism and wants to “show the people of Argentina the best side of me.”

The 25-year-old striker has shaken off a muscular problem and yesterday resumed full training with the Albiceleste in Los Angeles.

“I will always be available for selection and I want to set a good example with the Argentina squad,” he told TyC Sports.

Icardi was largely ignored by previous Coaches, despite banging in 110 goals in 192 Serie A games.

“I am here to prove what I can do. Lionel Scaloni continues to show that I am important in his eyes and I want to achieve great things with the national team.

“I have decided to forget the criticism of the past. I want to show the people of Argentina the best side of me.

“I don’t ask myself why I was left out of the World Cup squad. It was a decision the Coach made and that’s where it ended. I did suffer sitting at home watching the tournament, but I will always be available when called upon.”

Many claim that Icardi was snubbed by Argentina not for his football, but rather his relationship with wife Wanda Nara – ex-wife of Maxi Lopez – and subsequently Lionel Messi.

“I have the right sort of personality to deal with criticism. Nowadays you get criticised for anything and I can handle that sort of thing, as it doesn’t hurt me.”

Meanwhile, Messi is not in the squad this time around and it remains to be seen if he’ll retire from international duty again.

“It is rare not to see Messi playing for Argentina and it’s odd for the fans. He is the best in the world, but it’s only right that he took some time out after the World Cup.

“I have already played with Messi, we always talk in training, but haven’t had much time to refine our understanding on the pitch.”

The same is not true of Lautaro Martinez, who has joined Icardi at Inter this season, but had to leave the Argentina camp due to a muscular problem.

“He needs to relax, his injury is not serious. We lost him for these games, but he’ll be back in future. We got on well in these first two months at Inter. I am sure next time we’ll play together for Argentina too.

“We make a good pairing, we complete each other: I go for goal and he loves providing an assist.”

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