sport

Argentina call up Montillo

Walter Montillo is the surprise name in a 23-man Argentina squad for the friendly against Sweden next month.

The Santos playmaker, a recent signing from Cruzeiro, is the only player plying his trade in South America in a squad which is otherwise European-based.

Questions persist over how long that label will apply to Newcastle captain Fabricio Coloccini, who is one of four Barclays Premier League players selected along with Manchester City duo Sergio Aguero and Pablo Zabaleta and Wigan forward Franco Di Santo.

Espanyol goalkeeper Cristian Alvarez is another surprise inclusion in coach Alejandro Sabella's squad for the game in Stockholm on February 6.

The match will serve as a warm-up ahead of the resumption of the World Cup qualifiers, in which Argentina lead the South American standings by three points from Ecuador.

Argentina squad to face Sweden on February 6: Sergio Romero (Sampdoria), Mariano Andujar (Catania), Cristian Alvarez (Espanyol); Federico Fernandez, Hugo Campagnaro (both Napoli), Pablo Zabaleta (Manchester City), Fabricio Coloccini (Newcastle), Ezequiel Garay (Benfica), Cristian Ansaldi (Rubin Kazan); Javier Mascherano (Barcelona), Angel Di Maria (Real Madrid), Fernando Gago, Ever Banega (both Valencia), Augusto Fernandez (Celta), Enzo Perez (Benfica), Fabian Rinaudo (Sporting Lisbon), Walter Montillo (Santos); Lionel Messi (Barcelona), Gonzalo Higuain (Real Madrid), Ezequiel Lavezzi (Paris Saint Germain), Sergio Aguero (Manchester City), Franco Di Santo (Wigan), Osvaldo Nicolas Gaitan (Benfica).