Inter Miami has provided another update on the injury status of Lionel Messi ahead of the U.S. Open Cup final, with manager Tata Martino exercising caution to avoid making any mistakes regarding Messi's fitness, reported by GOAL.
The Argentine superstar suffered a knock while on international duty during the 2026 World Cup qualifying campaign with Argentina. Since then, Messi has only managed to play for 37 minutes before being forced off during an MLS clash against Toronto FC. As a result, he has missed subsequent fixtures against Atlanta United and Orlando City.
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With the U.S. Open Cup final against the Houston Dynamo looming large on the horizon, Martino faces a race against time to determine Messi's availability for the crucial match.
Speaking to reporters about Messi's status, Martino said, “It's very difficult to give him a percentage because we have to take it day by day. We'll continue to evaluate him, and, as I always say, I will listen to him first and see how he's feeling. Then we'll also need to evaluate future risks. It's not an easy decision, but we're going to take the right amount of time to try to not make a mistake.”
Inter Miami's schedule is hectic, with a vital clash against New York City FC following the U.S. Open Cup final. Currently, New York City FC occupies the final playoff spot in the MLS Eastern Conference, and Martino, Messi, and the team are focused on closing the five-point gap that separates them from a postseason berth.
Lionel Messi's presence would undoubtedly be a significant boost for Inter Miami, but the priority remains his health and avoiding any potential setbacks. The decision regarding his participation in the U.S. Open Cup final will be made after careful evaluation and consideration of all factors.