For a normal professional football player at a top club, 25 goal involvements in 34 games (11 goals, 14 assists) with an average goal or assist every 115 minutes would be a dream of a debut season. But Lionel Messi isn’t normal. Since the day he arrived at PSG, he had a target set on his back. Rightfully so, the PSG faithful expected the world from him something along the lines of what he accomplished at Barcelona and even more.
During his time at the Catalan club, Lionel Messi enjoyed a remarkable 21-year association with the club, leaving an indelible mark on its history. He amassed an incredible record of achievements, becoming Barcelona’s all-time leading scorer with 672 goals and winning numerous titles, including 10 La Liga titles, four Champions Leagues, and seven Copa del Reys.
Following his departure from Barcelona, Messi joined Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) in a highly anticipated move. Although he secured two Ligue 1 titles during his two seasons with the French club, it was a period of relative underachievement in his career. PSG’s inability to clinch the Champions League, coupled with disappointing exits from domestic competitions, resulted in scrutiny and criticism for Messi. 65 goal contributions and a horde of angry fans later Messi decided to call a halt to his Parisian stay.
His options were a romantic return to Argentina to his childhood club Newell’s Old Boys, a ‘Last Dance’ in Europe with Barcelona or a financially lucrative deal with one of the Saudi clubs. He instead chose Inter Miami. A club that spent years chasing him.
The GOAT bulls up the prices
With the addition of Lionel Messi, Inter Miami has experienced a remarkable surge in value and popularity. The club is likely to have reached the $1 billion mark, becoming one of the most valuable clubs in American sports. Ticket prices have doubled, tripled and even quadrupled.
As for Messi, he will earn income from MLS, Apple and adidas. Messi would reportedly receive a percentage of all new subscriptions to MLS Season Pass and a share of the revenue from adidas t-shirt sales with his name on it.
Spotlight in South Florida
Soon to turn 36 the Messi’s Inter Miami cheque may seem like one last before hanging up the boots. But after almost single-handedly lifting Argentina to World Cup glory and such a consistent output on the field for PSG it is hard to believe that Messi is looking to retire. Already in contention to win his 8th Ballon d’Or the Argentinian is probably setting his eye on the CONCACAF Champions League, and the Copa America. Rather than stepping out of focus, Messi is poised to bring the world’s focus to the MLS.
The possible lineup
Inter Miami are currently bottom of the Eastern Conference with 16 games played. It is unlikely that Messi alone will be able to carry them to the playoffs. But when the Argentine does start playing Inter Miami will have to build the team around him.
The following could be the possible line up-
GK- Drake Callender
Defenders- DeAndre Yeddlin, Kamal Miller, Serhiy Kryvtsov, Franco Negri
Central Mids- David Ruiz, Dixon Arroyo
Attacking Mid- Lionel Messi
Wingers- Corentin Jean, Robert Taylor
Forward- Leonardo Campana
This lineup ensures that Messi is deployed behind the false 9, a position he has been comfortable with in the past decade and a half.
As the management at Inter Miami trying tooth and nail to make Messi feel as at home as possible in the infamous Florida heat one can expect that a roster of former teammates will join soon. Miami have already initiated talks with Jordi Alba and Sergio Busquets and talks with Suarez are to begin soon. With first team manager Phil Neville sacked just before Messi’s arrival, Miami is looking to hire Tata Martino with whom Messi has worked extensively on numerous occasions.
With all due respect to the MLS and its style of football the competitive levels of the American league are still nowhere near that of the European leagues. It is safe to say that Messi is going to run riot scoring and assisting goals for Miami. He is in an excellent position to replicate his 73-goal season.
Criticisms against Messi for joining the MLS will soon start pouring in but nothing can stop him from becoming the next face of American club football.
Thank you for reading it. Leave us a comment if you liked it.
Have a good day ahead 🙂