Lionel Messi's move to Inter Miami couldn't have come at a better time, not just for the franchise but for the entire soccer industry in the United States. The MLS was said to be in decline before the World Cup winner moved to the United States. During a time when the entire football talent was heading to Saudi Arabia, Messi's move to Inter Miami stunned the world.
However, the move first impacted Inter Miami as they clinched their first-ever Leagues Cup title. It was a major turnaround for David Beckham's franchise as they went from being sat at the bottom of the table to their first-ever Leagues Cup trophy. Alongside that, it has brought an entire generation of football fans to the MLS.
In his first press conference as an Inter Miami player, Messi said, “I think soccer in the United States has grown a lot over these last few years – the US national team’s results of late are proof of that,”
The MLS hasn't had this kind of a transfer since Beckham moved to LA Galaxy in 2007. Hence, the move of Messi to Inter Miami has boosted MLS' credentials. The viewership of the US-based competition couldn't be as high as it is today. This positivity will heavily influence the 2026 World Cup, which is hosted by Mexico, Canada, and the USA.
Messi believes that the competition in the MLS is high, and he'll get to see that once he starts playing more MLS teams.
“I have the feeling it’s the same in the league [MLS]. That it’s a very competitive league, anybody can beat anybody, teams playing at home are strong, and it’s very hard to win on the road.”
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