Inter Miami CF are living the dream at the moment. July 15 marked a before and after for the franchise with the arrival of Lionel Messi, bringing a new sense of victory to a team that was sinking at the bottom of the Eastern Conference standings.
The year of 2023 had been a headache for the Miami team with disastrous results. Phil Neville, who had arrived in January 2021, left the team in June due to the poor performance, and interim coach Javier Morales also struggled to turn things around.
Up to that point, the season had seen a total of 22 matches played, with only five victories, 22 goals scored, and a goal difference of -14.
However, after the confirmation of Lionel Messi’s signing , everything changed. Along with him, Sergio Busquets, Jordi Alba, and manager Tata Martino arrived. These were elite-experienced names that instilled a winning mentality in the squad.
"The impact they have on the group is total. Not only Leo (Messi), but also Busquets and Jordi Alba. All of that is contagious for the teammates. The team has changed, and the squad has changed. We have a competitive squad," Tata emphasized after the victory against Nashville SC in a press conference that secured the team's place in the Leagues Cup 2023 final.
Miami setting a devastating pace
The quality and intensity of training increased alongside the performance on the field: Inter Miami CF is currently on an unstoppable run.
In the six matches they played in the Leagues Cup, they scored four goals against their opponents in four of them. Additionally, they never started a match losing and only in one match (against FC Dallas) did they need to decide the outcome through a penalty shootout.
In total, they have played six games with five victories in 90 minutes, an impressive tally of 21 goals scored, and a goal difference of 14 in their favor. Messi, as the leader and captain, is driving this performance with nine goals.
Finishing the Job
Although what they have achieved so far is brilliant, the players' expectations go beyond just reaching the final of the international tournament and securing a spot in the upcoming Concacaf Champions League.