In a remarkable turn of events, Inter Miami, once languishing at the bottom of the MLS Eastern Conference table, has risen to unprecedented heights following the arrival of soccer legends Lionel Messi, Sergio Busquets, and Jordi Alba. Skeptics doubted whether the trio could single-handedly transform the struggling team into a powerhouse, but recent results have proven otherwise.
The impact of these star players was evident from the outset, with Inter Miami remaining undefeated in Messi’s first five games with the team. Their latest challenge came in the form of a daunting semifinal clash against the formidable Philadelphia Union in the 2023 Leagues Cup.
While their earlier opponents had displayed some quality, the Union posed a formidable challenge that would test the newfound strength of Inter Miami. Astonishingly, the team showed no signs of intimidation and emerged triumphant with a resounding 4-1 victory. A remarkable goal by Messi sealed the victory, propelling Inter Miami to the Leagues Cup final and securing a coveted spot in next year’s CONCACAF Champions Cup.
The tone for the match was set just four minutes in as Josef Martinez found the back of the net, signaling another dominant display by the rejuvenated Inter Miami. Messi and Alba further solidified their dominance with two additional goals, granting them a commanding 3-0 lead by halftime. Although Alejandro Bedoya managed to break the silence with a 75th-minute goal for Philadelphia, any hopes of a comeback were swiftly extinguished by David Ruiz’s goal nine minutes later.
Inter Miami’s impressive journey continues as they now await the winner between Monterrey and Nashville SC in the Leagues Cup final. Meanwhile, the Philadelphia Union find themselves relegated to the third-place match against the loser of the other semifinal. Despite the setback, Philadelphia still has a significant opportunity to secure a CCC berth by winning the third-place game, underscoring their determination to remain competitive.
In what can only be described as a remarkable transformation, Inter Miami’s meteoric rise from the depths of the league standings to a Leagues Cup final berth is a testament to the transcendent influence of Messi, Busquets, and Alba. Their impact not only turned the team’s fortunes around but also set the stage for a promising future on the national and international soccer stage.