No Lionel Messi, no party! Inter Miami thrashed 5-2 by MLS rivals Atlanta United in absence of star man

Atlanta United Inter Miami
Inter Miami were thumped 5-2 by Atlanta United in Major League Soccer on Saturday evening, with Lionel Messi notably absent.
  • Messi dealing with muscle fatigue
  • Missed game against Atlanta
  • Miami thumped 5-2

WHAT HAPPENED? Without Messi, Inter were on the end of something approaching a hiding. The Argentina legend had inspired a run of 12 games unbeaten, and they looked like extending that when Leonardo Campana opened the scoring with a superb finish after 25 minutes, but Inter went into half time 3-1 down thanks to goals from Tristan Muyumba and Brooks Lennon, as well as an own goal from Kamal Miller.

Campana did give the Herons some hope by scoring a second after half-time, but Giorgos Giakoumakis and Tyler Wolff snuffed out any hopes of a comeback.

THE BIGGER PICTURE: Manager Tata Martino revealed after the game that Messi had "muscle fatigue", having left Argentina's squad in midweek before their game against Bolivia at altitude. It remains to be seen if he returns in time for the clash with Toronto on Thursday.

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Tata Martino Inter Miami Atlanta United

Leonardo Campana Inter Miami

Atlanta United Inter Miami

WHAT NEXT? Inter Miami will monitor Messi's fitness ahead of the Toronto game later this week.