The exhibition match featuring Lionel Messi’s Argentina has undergone further changes, and now, instead of facing Nigeria, they will play against Costa Rica on March 26 at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. This alteration is the latest in a series of changes, including the shift in location and opponent.

Originally, the World Cup champions were scheduled to play against Nigeria in Hangzhou and Ivory Coast in Beijing as part of a tour of China from March 18-26. However, the entire tour was canceled following Lionel Messi’s absence from Inter Miami’s preseason game in Hong Kong. Argentina had initially announced matches against El Salvador on March 22 at Philadelphia’s Lincoln Field and Nigeria four days later in Los Angeles.

The Argentina Football Association cited administrative visa issues as the reason for the latest change. Messi had previously mentioned a groin injury before Miami’s friendly against a local all-star team in Hong Kong on Feb. 4, leading to spectator disappointment. Despite this, he played three days later in an exhibition against Vissel Kobe in Tokyo.

Looking ahead, Argentina has friendlies scheduled against Ecuador on June 9 at Chicago’s Soldier Field and Guatemala five days later at FedEx Field in Landover, Maryland. The defending world and South American champions will then commence their Copa América campaign, facing Canada or Trinidad and Tobago on June 20 at Atlanta, followed by matches against Chile in East Rutherford, New Jersey, and Peru in Miami Gardens, Florida, on June 25 and June 29, respectively.


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