top of page

MLS Weekend Report: Messi's Blueprint from Ruin to Reward for Miami

Messi's Miami has done it, from the bottom of the standings to defeating Nashville SC for their first Leagues Cup in club history. This cements their qualification in the 2024 CONCACAF Champions League Round of 16, with Nashville qualifying and playing in the opening round.

Miami's sure-fire captain Lionel Messi delivered on leadership duties, in fashion, and went home with the honors of Leagues Cup's Best Player and Top Scorer awards, with 10 goals and four assists. Lionel Messi also surpassed his teammate from FC Barcelona; La Liga UNAM's Dani Alves, who holds 43 trophies to Messi's 44 world-record trophies.

Starting off in their game against Cruz Azul, Messi walked out onto the pitch and won, 2-1. Miami then moved on to a 4-0 win over Atlanta United and clinch their knockout round slot. During Messi's first start, midfielder Robert Taylor aced two to run Atlanta the entire game. After, during the round of 32, Miami was able to definitively dominate a strengthened Orlando City to solidify their Florida rivalry, 3-1, as the would progress.

Although showing up to Dallas proved more difficult, Messi was able to sink both a low cross from Jordi Alba and a free kick to seal the win, 4-4, against Dallas FC. In Charlotte, everyone seemingly breathed a sigh of relief. 4-0, with stellar passing by striker Leo Campana. Again, in Philadelphia, the Union were shut down, 4-1,

Finally, Nashville SC. Seemingly, the hardest on the road. Fafa Picault closed the match with a header that had been deflected off Benja Cremaschi and Drake Callender. Messi, Sergio Busquets, and Jordi Alba all scored penalties, the shootout progressing into sudden death. It came down to Callender's heroic save against Nashville's goalkeeper, Elliot Panicco. Callender would be awarded Best Goalkeeper for their win against Nashville.

#1, Callender, with the Best Goalkeeper Award after Inter Miami's win against Nashville SC.
Callender with the Best Goalkeeper Award. (Photo Credit: Kevin C. Cox)


bottom of page