Zabaleta has been linked with AC Milan and concedes his priority is the national team.
"It is important to me to be in the national team," Zabaleta told the Manchester Evening News. "To do that I have to play so every opportunity I get I have to do my best, to be fit and play well.
"I have been called up for the last two games by the new Argentina manager, so I am hoping to get in the squad for the next game, which means playing for City.
"I know that will be difficult because we have many players in every position - but it's great for the team. I have to make the most of every opportunity I get.
"Batista knows me because I worked under him at the Olympic Games before I came to Manchester. He knows the younger players, and I know I have a great chance to be the Argentina right back.
"But Argentina are a great team and have some of the world's best players playing in the best leagues, so to be first choice I have to play for my club. But playing every single game will be hard, and we need rotation because there are many games."