Argentina cancels World Cup friendly against Israel following Gaza violence

Additionally, the Israeli embassy in Buenos Aires said in a statement that it "regrets to communicate the suspension of the match" due to "threats and provocations" against Argentinean striker Lionel Messi.

Though Argentina have a final warm-up fixture against Israel on Saturday before the action gets under way in Russian Federation, they however hope for fancy chances in Russian Federation, despite struggling to actually clinch a spot, before Lionel Messi bagged a hat-trick against Ecuador in the final South American qualifier.

In an interview with the ESPN sports channel, Argentinean striker Gonzalo Higuain confirmed the cancellation, saying, "They've finally done the right thing".

Argentina's friendly match versus Israel is reportedly canceled.

"As far as I know, the players of the national team were not willing to play the game", Faurie said.

Information from The Associated Press and Reuters was used in this report.

Asked about Argentina's World Cup prospects, he added: "It will be important to prepare well, because in the qualifiers we were fighting up to the end and we didn't have time to prepare ourselves".

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Sampaoli had last week aired misgivings about having to travel to Israel for the game, noting he would have preferred to remain in Barcelona, where the team is holding its training camp.

The Culture and Sport Ministry's director general, Yossi Sharabi, said Wednesday morning that "a final effort" was still being made to hold the game as planned.

Paper magazine have taken advantage of this and recruited Messi to pose alongside the literal form of the term; not your typical run-of-the-mill farmyard goat, but a rather majestic-looking beast that rivals Messi in the beard stakes.

The Palestinian FA chairman, Jibril Rajoub, said: "Values, morals and sport have secured a victory today and a red card was raised at Israel through the cancellation of the game".

Palestinians are outraged at US President Donald Trump's decision last December to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital, breaking with decades of policy, and move his country's embassy there. The Palestinians want the eastern part of the city as the capital of a future state that will include the Gaza Strip and the Israeli-occupied West Bank.

Faurie also said players had received threats over playing the game and were uncomfortable with it going ahead.

(Copyright © 2015. All Rights Reserved.)
 
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