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 March 13, 2002 | 1220 IST

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Caniggia in, Batistuta out for Argentina

Veteran striker Claudio Caniggia was included but record goalscorer Gabriel Batistuta left out as Argentina named their squad on Tuesday for this month's World Cup warm-up against African Nations Cup champions Cameroon.

Caniggia, 35, who played in the 1990 and 1994 World Cups, kept his place after his performance in last month's 1-1 draw with Wales, his first international since July 1996 and his first under coach Marcelo Bielsa.

But Batistuta's frustrating season continued as he was again ignored.

Batistuta, who has scored only six goals for Italian club AS Roma in an injury-plagued season, has played only once for his country in the last year -- although he grabbed the equaliser in the 2-2 World Cup qualifying draw away to Paraguay.

Some of his earlier absences were due to injury but more recently he has been forced to make way for strikers such as Hernan Crespo and Claudio Lopez.

Batistuta, who says he will quit international football after the finals in South Korea and Japan, is Argentina's all-time top scorer with 55 goals in 75 games. He has played in the last two World Cups.

The squad was released in the form of a statement and Bielsa was not available for comment.

An Argentine Football Association (AFA) spokesman said the venue for the March 27 match against Cameroon had still not been confirmed.

Media reports speculated it could be Switzerland. Spain, Italy and Cameroon have been ruled out.

Any home-based players to be included will be named next week.

Goalkeepers - German Burgos (Atletico Madrid), Pablo Cavallero (Celta Vigo).

Defenders - Jose Chamot (AC Milan), Walter Samuel (AS Roma), Roberto Fabian Ayala (Valencia), Mauricio Pochettino (Paris St Germain), Diego Placente (Bayer Leverkusen), Juan Pablo Sorin (Cruzeiro)

Midfielders - Matias Almeyda (Parma), Javier Zanetti (Inter Milan), Juan Sebastian Veron (Manchester United), Marcelo Gallardo (Monaco), Pablo Aimar (Valencia)

Forwards - Claudio Lopez (Lazio), Hernan Crespo (Lazio), Gustavo Lopez (Celta Vigo), Kily Gonzalez (Valencia), Claudio Caniggia (Rangers)

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