Lionel Messi and his Argentina team took part in training ahead of their first World Cup warm-up match next Wednesday.
While snubbed striker Carlos Tevez was relaxing on a beach in Miami with his wife and kids, Alejandro Sabella’s men were put through their paces in a session at their Ezeiza training base in Buenos Aires.
La Albicelste are set to face Trinidad and Tobago on Wednesday night before facing Slovenia on Friday night, both in Buenos Aires.
Messi, who will captain his nation at the tournament, is under huge pressure in his homeland to finally deliver at a World Cup.
For all his goals and trophies at club level with Barcelona, Messi has just one goal in his two World Cup appearances and has not come close to winning silverware with Argentina.
But Sabella has urged his team-mates to make sure the four-time World Player of the Year has as much help as he can get to be successful in Brazil.
‘There is a team which must help Messi,’ Sabella told reporters earlier this week.
‘We cannot put all the responsibility on his shoulders. He is happy. He feels sheltered by his teammates.’
Sabella has been in the job since 2011 after a successful spell at Estudiantes which brought an Argentine title and the Copa Libertadores.
He added: ‘Messi has a different leadership role, in his own way. Leo is the leader with his footballing exuberance, which makes the whole world fall at his feet.’
Sabella was not worried that a poor season for Barcelona would effect the little maestro’s ability to perform in Brazil.