- Held in latest outing after leading twice
- Stuck at the foot of Eastern Conference
- Argentine icon about to join the cause
WHAT HAPPENED? The seven-time Ballon d’Or winner has revealed that he will be linking up with the David Beckham co-owned franchise as a free agent – with interest from Barcelona and the Middle East being snubbed in order to chase the American dream. Messi is, however, not expected to make his bow for new employers until a Leagues Cup opener with Cruz Azul on July 21.
THE BIGGER PICTURE: Inter Miami have one more MLS fixture to take in before then, against St Louis City, and will be desperate to snap a sorry run of results in that contest. They were held to a 2-2 draw by Wayne Rooney’s D.C. United last time out, with the lead surrendered on two occasions in Washington.
AND WHAT'S MORE: Despite now reaching double figures in terms of matches without success, as they remain rooted to the foot of the Eastern Conference and eight points adrift of the play-offs, there were positives for Miami to take against D.C. as two academy graduates - Benjamin Cremaschi and Noah Allen – scored their goals and six homegrown stars took to the field in total.
WHAT THEY SAID: Interim Inter Miami coach Javier Morales – who is preparing to hand the reins to former Barcelona and Mexico boss Tata Martino – told the club’s official website of seeing young stars shine: “We had five [academy products] on the field, and we finished with six, and it wasn’t because I was coaching the academy. I'm so proud, I'm so happy to give those players the opportunity. They had DPs on the field, and we had the [academy products], and the kids competed.”
IN THREE PHOTOS:
WHAT NEXT? Messi is set to be joined in Miami by ex-Barcelona team-mate Sergio Busquets, while a deal for Jordi Alba is said to be in the pipeline, so he will get plenty of support from experienced winners when taking on the challenge of trying to turn fortunes around at DRV PNK Stadium.