The history of Inter Miami changed completely before and after Lionel Messi joined.
Inter Miami drew 1-1 in the 2023 Leagues Cup Final against Nashville SC held at Giodas Park in Nashville, USA on the 20th at 10:00 am (hereinafter referred to as Korean time), and then won a miraculous 10-9 penalty shootout. achieved With this, Inter Miami won their first championship trophy.
Inter Miami used a 4-3-3 formation. Messi played the game as a right wing forward, but led the team’s attack as a playmaker by going to and from the center. He was also involved in the build-up with Sergio Busquets, who entered as a defensive midfielder.메이저놀이터
Early in the game, Nashville took the lead. Nashville continued to harass Inter Miami’s left defense in an attempt to score. However, he failed to make an effective shot and the chance was destroyed. Inter Miami, which brought the atmosphere, laughed first. In the 23rd minute of the first half, Messi dribbled from the right side to the center and scored the opening goal with a powerful left-footed shot.
This is the moment when Messi scored seven goals in a row in the tournament. Messi became the first player in history to score in all seven matches, including two Leagues Cup group stage matches, rounds of 32, rounds of 16, quarter-finals, semi-finals and finals. Messi set a phenomenal record of 10 goals and 1 assist in 7 games.
After that, both teams maintained a tight flow. Nashville put their energy on offense to try to equalize, and Inter Miami also focused on offense and tried to score an extra point. In this flow, Nashville balanced the score. In the 12th minute of the second half, in a corner kick attack, Papa Fico scored with a header.
Inter Miami had no chance to get ahead again. In the 26th minute of the second half, after Messi caught the ball in the right half space, he fired a surprise mid-range shot, but it hit the post and failed to lead to a goal. Nashville did not back down either. In the 33rd minute of the second half, Sergey tried to turn the corner with a sharp shot, but the goalkeeper threw himself to block it.
After that, Nashville continued to attack. In the 39th minute of the second half, in the situation of a free kick attack, Hani Mukta’s shot slightly missed the goal. In the second half of extra time, Mukta’s shot was blocked by the goalkeeper with a hand stretched out to protect the goal.
Inter Miami also has a chance to make a ‘buzzer beater score’. With 30 seconds left before the end of the game, Leonardo Campana caught the ball from the back. Campana, who overcame the competition with the defense, had a one-on-one opportunity with the goalkeeper. Seeing the goalkeeper come out, I aimed for a goal with a lightly over the key shot. But the shooting was inaccurate. Campana ran back and shot again, but it hit the post and failed to create a miracle.
In the end, the two teams did not see a match for 90 minutes. The match went to a penalty shootout without overtime. The first kicker was Messi. After completely fooling the goalkeeper, Messi shook the net by neatly kicking it into the lower right corner. In Nashville, Mukta, who started as the first kicker, inserted it accurately into the upper left corner.
Fate split on the second kicker. Busquets scored lightly, but Nashville’s Randall Reel’s shot was blocked by the goalie to make it 2-1. Afterwards, Inter Miami’s 3rd and 4th kickers all succeeded and took a step closer to winning the championship. The last kicker was Victor Olloa. But he missed. Nashville, who had another chance, succeeded in the 5th kicker and eventually became a 4-4 situation.
It continued in a sudden death format. Both teams succeeded in the 6th to 10th kickers. It came to the goalkeeper’s turn. First, Inter Miami’s Drake Calendar kicked hard into the upper right corner and succeeded in scoring. On the other hand, Nashville’s Elliott Panico’s shot was blocked by Calendar, and Inter Miami eventually won the championship 10-9.
It is the first win of the establishment. Founded in 2018, Inter Miami has been recognized as a professional club since 2020, belonging to the American Major League Soccer (MLS). But the grades were disastrous. In the first season of MLS participation, Inter Miami only finished 10th in the US Eastern Conference, and the following season dropped further to 11th. In the 2022 season, it rose to 6th place, but the 2023 season is at the bottom of the league with 5 wins, 3 draws and 14 losses (18 points) while the season is in progress.
Messi joined this team. Because it is a sport played by 11 people, few people expected a big change with just one Messi. But Messi changed the whole team. Inter Miami drew public attention when they signed Messi in July.
Then-owner David Beckham said, “When I started my journey to build a new team in Miami 10 years ago, I said I had a dream of bringing the best players in the world to this incredible city. I shared the ambition I had when I joined the LA Galaxy. “The players have worked to grow football in America and build a legacy for generations to come in the sport we love so much.”
“I am very excited to start the next phase of my career at Inter Miami and the United States,” said Messi. “This is a fantastic opportunity and together we will continue to build on this beautiful project. Working together to achieve the goals we have set. And I want to help here,” he said.
By winning the League’s Cup within a month of joining, Messi succeeded in ‘achieving the goal’ he stated in his joining impressions. Messi also said ahead of the final, “I’m excited to have another match to continue this happiness. I’m very happy now. I decided to come to this city and it was a decision made over time. It wasn’t an overnight decision. Everything was easy because I was there,” he said, revealing his satisfaction with life at Inter Miami.
When Messi moved to Inter Miami, he also achieved his historic personal record. He became the player who scored 20 or more goals for 17 consecutive years. Messi, who made his Barcelona debut in the 2004-05 season, has scored more than 20 goals every year since 2007. He even set a record by scoring 91 goals in 2012 alone. He started with 31 goals in 2007 and he scored 22, 41, 60, 59, 91, 45, 58, 52, 59, 54, 51, 50, 27, 43, 35 and 20 goals in 2023. He further added to his tally, now with 23 goals.