UNITED STATES: Lionel Messi has officially announced his decision to join Inter Miami in Major League Soccer, following months of speculation. The Miami team, under the guidance of coach David Beckham, has been striving to make a significant impact on the pitch but has faced challenges thus far. Messi’s choice to join Inter Miami is an extraordinary achievement in his illustrious career.
Jorge Mas, one of the owners of Inter Miami, took to Twitter to share an image of a silhouetted Messi shirt, confirming the highly anticipated signing.
Initially, there were expectations that Messi might opt for Al-Hilal in Saudi Arabia, following in the footsteps of his long-time rival Cristiano Ronaldo, who joined a club supported by the country’s sovereign wealth fund. Another possibility was a return to Barcelona, his long-time club where he had achieved immense success.
However, Messi’s decision to join Major League Soccer comes as a surprise, although there are still a few remaining details to be ironed out. The Argentine superstar expressed his eagerness to explore a different style of football in the American league, following his World Cup triumph and his inability to continue with Barcelona.
He emphasized that it was now his turn to experience football in a new way across the Atlantic.
Lionel Messi, the seven-time Ballon d’Or winner, has inked a two-year contract with Inter Miami. Before making his debut for the team, he will represent Argentina in matches against Australia and Indonesia, scheduled to take place in Beijing and Jakarta.
Messi’s first appearance for Inter Miami is expected in July. Having recently guided Argentina to a World Cup victory in December, he has achieved virtually everything in the game and has solidified his status as one of the greatest scorers in history, amassing over 800 goals for club and country. He has displayed his remarkable skills against 38 different national teams, including his brace in the 2017 World Cup final against France, cementing his position at the pinnacle of the sport.
Joining a struggling Inter Miami team currently at the bottom of the Eastern Conference, Messi’s arrival provides a tremendous boost to professional football in the United States. It brings in a player who remains at the top of his game and has just claimed a World Cup triumph.
Bringing Lionel Messi to the Miami pitch required extensive negotiations involving the MLS, Inter Miami ownership, Adidas, and Apple. Apple recently announced that it will air a four-part documentary series featuring Messi, offering exclusive behind-the-scenes access to his career and his pursuit of World Cup glory. Inter Miami’s initial seasons have been challenging, but the addition of Messi promises a transformative impact.
Messi’s meeting with co-owner David Beckham was publicly disclosed, generating further excitement among supporters. Inter Miami communicated to fans that the only way to secure tickets for the second half of the season was to purchase a season ticket package. Additionally, Messi and his family own luxurious properties in South Florida, hinting at the significance of this impending move.
Inter Miami has faced difficulties in attracting the same level of attention as other top professional teams in the region, such as the Miami Dolphins, Heat, Marlins, and Panthers. This is surprising considering the significant Latino population in the area, where the sport is commonly referred to as “futbol.”
Messi’s decision to join Miami brings an end to the tumultuous saga of Barcelona’s financial troubles, which led to his departure from the club two years ago. During his announcement, he mentioned his desire to avoid going through a similar situation, as he had heard reports of player sales and salary reductions.
Messi’s move to Miami is perhaps even more unexpected than LeBron James’ decision to join the Miami Heat 13 years ago. While he had no financial issues with Saudi Arabia and faced suspension at PSG, this unexpected move might have caused some supporters to turn against him. Overall, Lionel Messi’s decision to join Inter Miami represents a remarkable twist in his career trajectory.