Sport Argentina want Everton’s Funes Mori for Rio Olympics

Argentina want Everton’s Funes Mori for Rio Olympics

Ramiro Funes Mori.
Ramiro Funes Mori.

Argentina have asked English Premier League club Everton to make defender Ramiro Funes Mori available for the Rio Olympics, national team coach Gerardo Martino said on Monday.

The 2016/17 Premier League season is scheduled to start on Aug. 13 and clubs are under no obligation to release players as the Olympics are not on the FIFA calendar.

The Olympic soccer tournament is contested by under-23 teams with a maximum of three over-age players.

“We’re thinking of Ramiro Funes Mori for the Games,” Martino told local radio station AM590. “We still have to see if Everton agree to our request.”

Martino’s senior squad, in which the 25-year-old Funes Mori is a first-choice central defender, will play the Centennial Copa America in the United States in June.

“Let’s hope we can have him for both competitions. We’ve already spoken with (Everton manager) Roberto Martinez and it’s a possibility,” Martino added.

Martino said he was also considering senior players Paulo Dybala of Juventus, Atletico Madrid pair Luciano Vietto and Matias Kranevitter, Inter Milan’s Mauro Icardi and Real Sociedad goalkeeper Geronimo Rulliother for Olympic duty.

Olympic champions in 2004 and 2008, Argentina did not qualify for the London 2012 tournament, which was won by Mexico.