Lionel Messi scored for Inter Miami in 2-0 win against New York Red Bulls© AFP
Lionel Messi wasn’t in the starting XI, yet it was his goal that made all the difference for Inter Miami in the Major League Soccer game against New York Red Bulls on Saturday. Messi came off the bench to inspire an incredible solo goal for Inter Miami in the playoffs match, helping his team win 2-0. It was the Argentine maestro, who has already scored a plethora of important goals for the club in other competitions, who finished off a peak Barcelona-style team goal. It was also the first goal for Messi in the regular MLS season.
After a week in which Miami won the Leagues Cup and reached the final of the US Open Cup, Messi was left on the bench by coach Gerard “Tata” Martino, who decided that the 7-time World Cup winner needed to rest, but came into the game on the hour mark.
The Argentine World Cup winner had limited involvement after entering with former Barcelona team-mate Sergio Busquets but made his mark on his regular season debut with an 89th-minute goal. Here’s the video:
For his first regular season goal for the club
— Inter Miami CF (@InterMiamiCF) August 27, 2023
Jordi Alba acrobatically hooked the ball into the box to Messi who twisted and turned then slipped a sublime pass with the outside of his foot to Benjamin Cremaschi whose low first-time cross was tapped in by the seven-times Ballon d’Or winner.
Messi has now scored 11 goals in nine appearances in all competitions since joining Inter Miami.
A makeshift Miami had taken the lead in the 37th minute when Noah Allen played in a cross from the left and Paraguayan Diego Gomez was given time to turn and then slot home a left-foot effort.
The win lifts Miami off the bottom of the Eastern Conference and reduces the gap to the last playoff sport to 11 points with 11 games remaining.
With AFP inputs
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