The Argentinian arrives at a team that is at the bottom of Major League Soccer's Eastern Conference

The seven reasons why Messi is at Inter Miami

AFP/JOSEP LAGO - Lionel Messi
photo_camera AFP/JOSEP LAGO - Lionel Messi

Messi will play for Inter Miami in the most important signing in Major League Soccer's (MLS) 30-year history. The film of the Argentine star's arrival in Florida has many secrets that need to be explored to understand the significance and meaning of this news.


Joan Laporta will go down in posterity as the president who had to sack Messi and was unable to bring him back to the club where he became a world idol. The azulgrana club lives in an extra-sporting hell with a millionaire debt that has forced it to sell part of its assets, an exodus to another stadium next season where the soçi does not want to go and a possible case of refereeing influence after payments to the former vice-president of the Technical Committee of Referees for almost 20 years in the so-called "Negreira case" were demonstrated. 

AP/JOAN MONFORT - El presidente del club FC Barcelona, Joan Laporta
AP/JOAN MONFORT - FC Barcelona club president, Joan Laporta

LaLiga informed Barça of their salary limits for next season and that ended up frustrating the signing of Messi, something that the player himself has acknowledged in a statement. The economic problems are once again putting the LaLiga champions in trouble while their partners are unable to raise their voices.

Miami, FL

Messi arrives in one of his favourite cities. His trips to the capital of the state of Florida are well known, as is his business in a city where the tax burden is lower and where actors, singers and US retirees choose to live. Shakira, for example, will be there with the children she has in common with Piqué, Messi's former Barcelona teammate.


When Beckham came to MLS in 2007 from Real Madrid, he arrived as a franchise player with the option of starting a team in the future if he could get enough support. That happened in 2018 and in 2020 Inter Miami made its MLS debut 20 years after the demise of the Miami Fusion.

The Englishman has served as his team's master of ceremonies these first few seasons to activate the fan base in and around Miami as well as working on the construction of the new 25,000-capacity Miami Freedom Park stadium.   


But not Gonzalo, more like Federico. Both Higuain brothers finished their careers at Inter Miami, with the former Real Madrid striker having three good seasons with 68 goals. His brother Federico moved from Argentina to MLS, except for a brief spell in Turkey in 2007. He now coaches Inter Miami II and has become an institution, playing host to Messi as he arrives on the Florida peninsula.

PHOTO - Higuaín durante un partido de la MLS
PHOTO - Higuaín during an MLS game


Apple discovered football through the Ted Lasso series and decided to back MLS by buying the worldwide rights to the competition for 10 years. Messi was the least important thing that summer of 2022, but now he is a rising value because subscriptions to its MLS Season Pass will grow exponentially and the free matches offered every matchday will be the perfect attraction.

New England Revolution, Philadelphia Union or Austin, already in July, will be Messi's first matches in the pink jersey or in the so-called "the night" that serves as a second kit.

2026 World Cup 

The 2026 World Cup will be held in Mexico, the United States and Canada and will feature 48 teams for the first time in history. Miami will be one of 11 US venues and is expected to host matches at the new Miami Freedom Park being built in the city.

Having Messi in MLS is an added bonus, but the competition itself has always defended its model over European stars who have taken the step to play there in their final years of their careers. By 2030, MLS is expected to be one of the five major leagues in the world.

PHOTO/AFP - Lionel Messi celebra con sus compañeros argentinos la victoria en el Mundial de Qatar
PHOTO/AFP - Lionel Messi celebrates with his Argentina teammates after winning the World Cup in Qatar


MLS itself sent out a statement announcing Messi's possible arrival and that negotiations had begun. Playing in the United States is not easy because the rules are very strict for teams and players. Inter Miami itself was sanctioned for including Matuidi as a franchise player after already having Pizarro and Higuain, which made the competition suspicious. Financial sanctions, reduction of transfer money and the dismissal of the director of operations was the drastic solution to the case.

If Beckham came to MLS for 7.5 million euros, Messi will probably not exceed 8 million. Chicharito earns almost 7 million in LA Galaxy, Insigne 7 million in Toronto and Shaqiri is the best paid with 7.6 million in Chicago. 

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