Tevez left off Argentina roster to play Portugal

Manchester City forward Carlos Tevez and several other first-choice players were left off Argentina's roster for a Feb. 9 exhibition against Portugal at Geneva.

Coach Sergio Batista also omitted Atletico Madrid forward Sergio Aguero and defenders Martin Demichelis of Malaga and Gabriel Heinze of Marseille. Also missing was injured Real Madrid forward Gonzalo Higuain.

Barcelona star Lionel Messi, who won his second straight FIFA player of the year award, heads the roster announced Monday.

Just two of the 24 players are based in Argentina: Estudiantes midfielder Enzo Perez and Velez Sarsfield forward Juan Manual Martinez.

Preparing to host the Copa America in July, Argentina also plays the United States on March 26 at East Rutherford, N.J., then opens Costa Rica's new stadium three days later in San Jose.

The roster:

Goalkeepers: Mariano Andujar (Catania, Italy), Sergio Romero (AZ Alkmar, Netherlands)

Defenders: Nicolas Burdisso (Roma, Italy), Ezequiel Garay (Real Madrid, Spain), Gabriel Milito (Barcelona, Spain), Nicolas Otamendi (Porto, Portugal), Nicolas Pareja (Spartak Moscow, Russia), Marcos Rojo (Spartak Moscow, Russia), Pablo Zabaleta (Manchester City, England), Javier Zanetti (Inter Milan, Italy)

Midfielders: Ever Banega (Valencia, Spain), Lucas Biglia (Anderlecht, Belgium), Esteban Cambiasso (Inter Milan, Italy), Angel Di Maria (Real Madrid, Spain), Fernando Gago (Real Madrid, Spain), Javier Mascherano (Barcelona, Spain), Javier Pastore (Palermo, Italy), Enzo Perez (Estudiantes), Jose Sosa (Napoli, Italy)

Forwards: Nicolas Gaitan (Benfica, Portugal), Ezequiel Lavezzi (Napoli, Italy), Juan Manual Martinez (Velez Sarsfield), Lionel Messi (Barcelona, Spain), Diego Milito (Inter Milan, Italy)