Inter Miami defeated Philadelphia Union 4-1 to go to the Leagues Cup final. Lionel Messi scored a long-range worldly.
Tickets for Lionel Messi's League Cup semi-final match against the Philadelphia Union sold out in less than 10 minutes, and Inter Miami's new signing did not disappoint the crowd at Subaru Park in Pennsylvania. Messi scored a long-range stunner in the 20th minute to give his team a 2-0 lead over the Philadelphia Union. Inter Miami won convincingly 4-1 to advance to their first major final in club history.
Inter Miami's other three goals came from Josef Martinez, Jordi Alba, and David Ruiz. Messi has nine goals in nine games since joining the Major League Soccer (MLS) club earlier this summer. Messi's nine goals have all come in the Leagues Cup, a competition in which 47 teams from the MLS and Liga MX compete.
Messi was seen switching jerseys with fellow Argentine and Philadelphia Union forward Julian Carranza following the semi-final game. After assisting Inter Miami to the League Cup finals, the Argentine legend posted a heartfelt tribute on Instagram. "We worked our way to the finals and won!" "We're still on the last step at Leagues Cup," wrote the seven-time Ballon d'Or winner.
Lionel Messi's signing for Inter Miami has been nothing short of spectacular thus far. Since Messi's debut for the Herons against Cruz Azul last month, the Miami-based club has gone unbeaten. Inter Miami's incredible winning streak seemed to amaze Philadelphia Union coach Jim Curtain. "They're only going to get better [Inter Miami]." That Miami team is going to be eliminated. Their ownership is going to spend a lot of money. They will elevate them to the top of the league. They could already be the league's best team. That's coming, and I don't think anything can stop them," Curtain told the Associated Press.
Josef Martinez, a Venezuelan striker for Inter Miami, scored the game's first goal in the third minute. Only 17 minutes later, Lionel Messi extended Inter Miami's lead. The World Cup-winning Argentine captain scored his lone goal of the night with a stunning strike from outside the penalty area.
Jordi Alba scored his first goal for Inter Miami late in the first half, giving his team a 3-0 advantage. The Philadelphia Union got one back through Alejandro Bedoya, but it didn't influence the outcome of the game. Inter Miami's David Ruis scored an insurance goal in the 84th minute of the semi-final match. Inter Miami will face Nashville SC in the Leagues Cup final after they defeated Mexican side monterrey2-0.