After winning the Leagues Cup 2023 title last Saturday, there’ll be no time to rest Lionel Messi as the games continue to come thick and fast. Here’s a rundown of the upcoming matches as Inter Miami CF return to domestic action.
The team’s next match-up will be in Ohio on Wednesday, as the Florida outfit take on FC Cincinnati in the U.S. Open Cup semifinals at TQL Stadium. The game will kick off at 7pm ET (5pm in Mexico City), and will see Messi face his toughest rival since touching down in North America, given the opponents are currently MLS Eastern Conference leaders.
Should the team come out on top in that game, they’ll advance to the final on September 27 and face the winner of the other clash between the Houston Dynamo and Real Salt Lake. The competition has a spot in the CONCACAF Champions Cup 2024 on the line, although Inter Miami CF have already qualified for the last 16 of that competition by virtue of their Leagues Cup 2023 title
The Argentine maestro is also in line to make his MLS debut on August 26 against the New York Red Bulls, in a game that kicks off at 7:30pm ET (5:30pm in Mexico City). The match, which will take place at Red Bull Arena, will see the visitors look to put an end to an 11-game winless run in MLS action
The next match will be on Wednesday, August 30 against Leagues Cup 2023 final opponents Nashville SC at DRV PNK Stadium in Fort Lauderdale 7:30pm ET (5:30pm in Mexico City), and then on Sunday 3 September against Los Angeles FC. Messi will miss the following home game against Sporting Kansas City, as he’ll be on duty with the Argentina national team.
The seven-time Ballon d’Or winner has other commitments in his schedule, as do several of his teammates, because the qualifiers for the 2026 World Cup are about to begin. The first double header of games will be in September: on Thursday 7, Argentina will host Ecuador at the Estadio Monumental and on Tuesday 12 they will play Bolivia in La Paz.
We’ll be seeing Messi in action for a while. Not only because of the competitions he’s involved in and the upcoming calendar, but also because El Diez is very much still fit and firing. In his first North American tournament, he finished as champion, top scorer and captain. He is still fresh and eager to continue winning titles, despite already being the most decorated player in history.