Lionel Messi, the Argentine superstar and seven-time Ballon d’Or winner, scored a spectacular goal from outside the box to help Inter Miami defeat Philadelphia Union 4-1 in the Leagues Cup semifinal on Tuesday night.
Messi continues his scoring spree for Inter Miami
Messi, who joined Inter Miami in a sensational transfer from FC Barcelona in January 2023, has been in sensational form for his new club. He has scored nine goals in six appearances for Miami in the Leagues Cup, a tournament that features eight teams from Major League Soccer and eight teams from Liga MX.
Messi’s goal against Philadelphia was a trademark strike from the 34-year-old, who curled a left-footed shot from 25 yards out into the top corner of the net, leaving the goalkeeper with no chance. The goal came in the 20th minute and doubled Miami’s lead after Josef Martinez had opened the scoring in the third minute.
Inter Miami dominate Philadelphia Union with ease
Inter Miami, who are coached by former Manchester United and Everton manager David Moyes, showed their superiority over Philadelphia Union, who are the reigning Supporters’ Shield winners in MLS. Miami added a third goal just before halftime through Jordi Alba, another former Barcelona teammate of Messi who joined him in Florida.
Philadelphia Union, who had lost only one of their previous 41 home games at Subaru Park, pulled one back in the 73rd minute through Alejandro Bedoya, but it was too little too late for the hosts. Inter Miami sealed their victory with a fourth goal in the 84th minute from David Ruiz, a 19-year-old Colombian forward who came off the bench.
Inter Miami advance to Leagues Cup final and qualify for Concacaf Champions League
With the win, Inter Miami reached their first ever final in any competition since joining MLS in 2020. They will face Nashville SC, who beat Cruz Azul 2-1 in the other semifinal, on Saturday for the Leagues Cup trophy.
Inter Miami also secured a spot in the 2024 Concacaf Champions League, a prestigious tournament that features the best clubs from North America, Central America and the Caribbean. Inter Miami have never played in the Champions League before and will hope to make an impact with their star-studded squad.
Lionel Messi, who has won four Champions League titles with Barcelona, will be eager to add another one to his collection with Inter Miami. He will also be looking to continue his scoring streak and lead his team to glory in the Leagues Cup final on Saturday.