Argentina captain Lionel Messi will make his return from suspension in November, insists head coach Lionel Scaloni.Messi was handed a three-month ban from international football in August for accusing South America’s governing body CONMEBOL of “corruption” during the Copa America.After being controversially sent off in Argentina’s third-place play-off win over Chile in July, Messi did not appear to collect his medal and the five-time Ballon d’Or winner later explained that he did not want to “be part of this corruption, this lack of respect towards the whole Copa”. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Ox-rated! Dream night in Genk for Liverpool ace after injury nightmare Messi a man for all Champions League seasons – but will this really be Barcelona’s? Are Chelsea this season’s Ajax? Super-subs Batshuayi & Pulisic show Blues can dare to dream Time for another transfer? Giroud’s Chelsea spell set to end like his Arsenal career Messi also blasted the officiating at the competition following Argentina’s semi-final loss to hosts Brazil, before then suggesting referees and the VAR would favour Tite’s men against Peru in the final, which the Selecao won 3-1.The Argentina skipper has missed friendlies against Chile, Mexico and Germany, and he will sit out Sunday’s clash with Ecuador ahead of next month’s return. Asked about Messi, Scaloni told reporters: “Messi is not here due to suspension.”Sergio Aguero is not here because he’s been carrying a problem and has not been training 100 per cent with his club.”Surely both will be here next month.”Argentina are coming off a 2-2 draw away to Germany on Wednesday – a game in which Scaloni’s men overturned a two-goal deficit in the second half.Scaloni has already named his line-up for the match against Ecuador, with Agustin Marchesin, Juan Foyth, German Pezzella, Walter Kannemann, Marcos Acuna, Nicolas Gonzalez, Rodrigo De Paul, Leandro Paredes, Lucas Ocampos, Lucas Alario and Lautaro Martinez all starting.”The idea is to play with attacking players. With players that get to the penalty area,” Scaloni said.”We believe that this is the right way. We take decisions thinking about what is best for the team.”Scaloni recently hailed Paulo Dybala and Martinez as the future of the Argentina national team . Argentina are undefeated since their loss to Brazil in the Copa America semi-final having claimed wins over Chile and Mexico during that period. La Albiceleste are scheduled to take on Paraguay in a friendly next month with all eyes now set to be on whether Messi does make his national team return.
The Toronto stock market was lower on Friday near midday as disappointing Canadian jobs numbers added to concerns about the global economy, in particular China.The S&P/TSX composite index was down 9.22 points at 11,848.91, while the TSX Venture Exchange slipped 0.11 of a point to 1,192.94.The Canadian dollar was at 100.83 cents US, up 0.02 of a cent. Earlier in the session the loonie had been as low as 100.3 cents US, down nearly half a cent from Thursday’s close, shortly after Statistics Canada’s jobs report for July.Statistics Canada reported that the unemployment rate rose one-tenth of a point to 7.3 per cent as the economy shed 30,400 jobs last month. The outcome was notably worse than the addition of about 6,000 jobs that analysts had expected.Traders have been revisiting worries about the direction of the global economy after a series of economic data out of China showed that the world’s second-largest economy is facing a slowdown.The Chinese economic figures causing most concern on Friday was the trade data for July. Exports rose just one per cent over a year earlier, sharply below forecasts of five per cent, while import growth fell to 4.7 per cent from the previous month’s 6.3 per cent, also below expectations.The trade surplus with the 27-nation European Union, China’s biggest trading partner, narrowed by 37.9 per cent to $10.8 billion, reflecting sluggish demand in Europe, which is wrestling with a debt crisis and recession.The figures, which came a day after China reported a slowdown in auto sales and factory output, are likely to heap the pressure on Beijing to take more measures to boost economic growth.On Wall Street, the Dow Jones industrial average decreased 38.48 points to 13,126.71 and the broader S&P slid 4.07 points to 1,398.73. The Nasdaq lost 8.77 points to 3,009.87.At the TSX, energy stocks were off 2.2 per cent with the September crude contract on the New York Mercantile Exchange down 59 cents to US$92.77 a barrel.September copper moved down 3.4 cents to US$3.41 a pound while December gold fell $3.80 to US$1,624 an ounce.The biggest gainer was the information technology sector, up 3.3 per cent, with Open Text (TSX:OTC) ahead $5.08 to $54.14.Research In Motion (TSX:RIM) shares gained 35 cents to $8.07 following reports that IBM has an “informal” interest in buying the BlackBerry maker’s enterprise division. Financials stocks were off 0.1 per cent with Royal Bank (TSX:RY) slipping 26 cents to $50.94.In earnings, railway tie and utility pole maker Stella-Jones Inc. (TSX:SJ) is raising its dividend 6.7 per cent after reporting profits were up 20.1 per cent at $20.8 million or $1.30 per share in its most recent quarter. That compared with net profits of $17.3 million or $1.08 per share in the same year-earlier period. Its shares rose $1.97 to $59.69.In Europe, Germany’s DAX fell 0.3 per cent to 6,908 while the CAC-40 in France was 0.6 per cent lower at 3,437. The FTSE 100 index of leading British shares was 0.2 per cent lower at 5,842.Earlier in Asia, Japan’s Nikkei 225 index fell 1 per cent to close at 8,891.44. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng shed 0.7 per cent to 20,136.12 and South Korea’s Kospi bounced closed 0.3 per cent higher at 1,946.40.