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Messi Leads Inter Miami in Leagues Cup Final

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Messi Leads Inter Miami in Leagues Cup Final

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Lionel Messi’s impressive streak with Inter Miami in the Leagues Cup continued on Tuesday night. Messi and Inter Miami continued their strong performance by convincingly defeating the Philadelphia Union with a commanding 4-1 victory, securing their place in the Leagues Cup final. This win not only marks Miami’s inaugural final appearance in the club’s history, but also signifies a remarkable transformation for a team that previously held the lowest position in Major League Soccer. This victory also paves the way for Inter Miami to participate in their first-ever CONCACAF Champions Cup in the upcoming year.

Just. Like. That.

Josef scores EARLY for @InterMiamiCF! #LeaguesCup2023 pic.twitter.com/z525trOgZI

— Major League Soccer (@MLS) August 15, 2023

Following an early goal from Josef Martínez, Lionel Messi added to his impressive tally with his ninth goal in just six games for the club. Messi received a pass from Martínez, who was subsequently tackled, and swiftly maneuvered near midfield before unleashing a powerful shot that pierced through the defenses of three Union players. This skillful maneuver extended Miami’s advantage to 2-0, all transpiring within the opening 20 minutes of the match.

What can’t he do?! 🐐

Make it NINE goals in six games for Leo Messi. pic.twitter.com/HLf3zBFTmV

— Major League Soccer (@MLS) August 15, 2023

Shortly after Martínez’s initial goal in the third minute, Messi’s striking contribution followed. The sequence leading up to the goal involved Sergii Kryvtsov threading a precise through ball from deep within the right side of the field to Martínez. Subsequently, Martínez expertly directed the ball across the field to the left side post, resulting in a goal that left fans at Subaru Park in Pennsylvania completely astounded by the swift and skillful play.


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Before halftime, Miami extended their lead even further with a third goal in the 47th minute. Jordi Alba managed to break free along the left flank of the field, leaving the Union’s defensive line behind. With no opposition in sight, Alba confidently scored, solidifying a 3-0 advantage for his team.

Jordi Alba joins the fun. 🇪🇸

3-0 to @InterMiamiCF just before the half! pic.twitter.com/zuiOyQFjhf

— Major League Soccer (@MLS) August 16, 2023

The resounding boos from Union fans as they retreated to the locker room echoed the frustration and disappointment felt by the home crowd in response to the commanding performance displayed by Miami.

“We set ourselves up for failure by making a big mistake in the third minute and we’re chasing the game from there,” Union coach Jim Curtain said at halftime.

In the 73rd minute, Philadelphia managed to notch a goal. Alejandro Bedoya capitalized on a rebound following a corner kick, slotting the ball between the legs of Miami’s DeAndre Yedlin from the right side of the box. This breakthrough marked Philadelphia’s successful attempt to get on the scoreboard.

Captain’s goal. ©️@PhilaUnion pull one back through Ale Bedoya! #LeaguesCup2023 pic.twitter.com/thjtwzSCYR

— Major League Soccer (@MLS) August 16, 2023

However, Miami swiftly and effectively countered to secure their victory. In the 83rd minute, David Ruiz netted another goal for Inter Miami, solidifying a commanding three-goal lead and ultimately sealing the win.

FOUR for Miami.

What a moment for 19-year-old David Ruiz. #LeaguesCup2023 pic.twitter.com/8Xe5Fjf5u7

— Major League Soccer (@MLS) August 16, 2023

Since his arrival in South Florida, Messi has demonstrated unparalleled dominance. His presence has rapidly transformed Miami into the favored team to win the Leagues Cup on BetMGM, despite their current position at the bottom of MLS’ Eastern Conference.

Miami’s impressive winning streak has now reached six consecutive victories, surpassing their total MLS wins for this season. Messi himself has contributed significantly with nine goals. As a collective effort, Miami has found the back of the net 21 times, only one goal short of matching their 22 goals in MLS play.

Notably, the recent game marked Messi’s second away fixture with the club. The Union, who have been formidable at Subaru Park in the past two seasons, had lost just one home game. Additionally, the Union had only conceded four goals in Leagues Cup matches prior to Tuesday night. Despite these challenges, the Union had secured a 2-0 victory over Querétaro in the quarterfinals, following two consecutive penalty shootout wins.

With this victory, Miami advances to the finals, where they will face Nashville SC on Saturday. Nashville secured their spot by defeating Monterrey 2-0 in their own semifinal match, thanks to goals from Sam Surridge and Fafà Picault.


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