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International friendlies: Lionel Messi to miss Argentina's clash against Singapore due to 'personal reasons'

Singapore: Superstar Lionel Messi will skip a friendly against Singapore next week for "personal reasons", organisers said late Saturday.

Gonzalo Higuain and Nicolas Otamendi will also be absent from Tuesday's "Superclassico" match, UNICESS said in a statement.

File image of Lionel Messi. Reuters

File image of Lionel Messi. Reuters

"While we share the disappointment of football fans in Singapore and elsewhere at the absence of these players, we still very much look forward to what will be an exciting football match against a team that will continue to feature a world class line-up of players," UNICESS said.

Messi and defender Otamendi were earlier reported to be missing the game to prepare for their weddings later this month but organisers in Singapore had been reluctant to confirm the news.

Messi marries his girlfriend Antonella Roccuzzo on 30 June, with Otamendi's wedding scheduled for 16 June.

The Football Association of Singapore released footage on Saturday showing the team, including Messi and Otamendi, arriving from Melbourne where they had beaten top-ranked Brazil in a "Superclassico" game.

The team arrived in a private airport terminal to little fanfare, with about a dozen fans waiting outside the compound hoping for a glimpse of stars including Manchester City striker Sergio Aguero and Paris Saint-Germain winger Angel Di Maria.

Argentina, ranked second in the world by FIFA, kick off at the National Stadium against 159th placed Singapore on 13 June to mark the 125th anniversary of the city-state's football association.

Published Date: Jun 11, 2017 08:55 AM | Updated Date: Jun 11, 2017 08:55 AM

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