Why Lionel Messi is facing biggest break of his career as Inter Miami cling desperately to MLS play-off dream.

Why Lionel Messi is facing biggest break of his career as Inter Miami cling desperately to MLS play-off dream.


Lionel Messi is currently facing the longest hiatus in his illustrious career as Inter Miami anxiously strive to secure a spot in the MLS playoffs. Presently, the Florida-based team finds themselves with a challenging five-point gap to close in their last five matches to clinch a playoff berth. While they celebrated success in the Leagues Cup this season, they suffered a loss in the U.S. Open Cup final. Adding to their worries, Messi, their iconic captain, has been absent for four of their last five games, only managing to play for 37 minutes during this period.

In the broader context, Inter Miami is banking on Messi’s return to full fitness to keep their hopes alive for a historic MLS Cup victory. Should they fall short of this goal, their 2023 campaign will conclude on October 21, potentially keeping Messi sidelined until late February 2024, when the next MLS season commences.

Interestingly, Messi might have a chance to feature in Argentina’s 2026 World Cup qualifiers against Uruguay and Brazil in November. However, following the last of these fixtures, he could face a 95-day gap until February 24, which is a potential starting date for the MLS in 2024, as noted by Forbes. If he doesn’t participate in both matches for the 2022 World Cup-winning team in the autumn, it could result in a record-breaking rest period for the seven-time Ballon d’Or winner.

What happens next is crucial for both Messi and Inter Miami. Messi has experienced only one instance in his career where he had more than 95 days without a game, which occurred during a 99-day hiatus with Barcelona at the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic. Considering his previous injury-related breaks, the longest was an 87-day period due to a foot fracture when he was still a teenager. Inter Miami is determined to avoid making unwanted history for their superstar summer signing by securing a playoff spot before the conclusion of the regular season.

Leave feedback about this

  • Originality
Choose Image
Choose Video