Lionel Messi’s arrival at Inter Miami this summer has transformed the struggling MLS club. The Argentinian legend has proven that, even at 36 years old, he remains a talismanic presence capable of lifting a team to new heights.
Pushed off the bottom
Prior to Messi’s blockbuster signing in June, Inter Miami languished at the bottom of the Eastern Conference. They were rudderless under interim coach Rob Valentino after Phil Neville’s sacking. But Messi’s motivational qualities, world-class ability and winning mentality have catalyzed a remarkable turnaround.
The six-time Ballon d’Or winner has dazzled in MLS, scoring or assisting nearly every time he has taken the field. His clutch free-kick to beat Liga MX’s Cruz Azul in his debut foreshadowed the impact he would have. With Messi leading the line, Inter Miami have become a force, climbing up the standings and capturing their first trophy in the Leagues Cup.
Reunited with former Barcelona teammates Jordi Alba and Sergio Busquets, along with ex-Argentina boss Tata Martino, Messi is enjoying an Indian summer in Miami. Martino has hailed Messi’s transformative effect on the club, lauding his competitiveness and desire to keep winning despite already securing every major honor in the sport.
But a humbling 5-2 loss to Atlanta United in Messi’s absence underlined just how invaluable the Argentine legend has become. Inter Miami remain a flawed work in progress, over-reliant on their superstar newcomer.
The Messi effect
The stark statistical comparison says it all. With Messi, Inter Miami have won nearly every match. Without him, they crumbled against Atlanta. Lionel Messi has propelled his new club from Eastern Conference stragglers to trophy winners, cementing his status as the most impactful MLS arrival since David Beckham in Los-Angeles Galaxy.
|With Messi||Stats||Without Messi|
|10 (2 via penalty shots)||Won||10 (1 via penalty shots)|
|30 (53% with direct hand: 11 scored and 5 assisted by Messi)||Goals||33|
|2.72||Goals per game||1.17|
|1.09||Goals against per game||1.64|
|2.81 (2.33)||Points per game (MLS)||1.17 (0.87)|
|90.9% (63% not including penalty shootouts)||Win rate||35.7% (32% not including penalty shootouts)|
As you can see from the table, literally every indicator has increased significantly with the arrival of the Argentine. According to bookmakers’ estimates, Inter Miami are now favourites in the prevailing majority of meetings. Betting on them may not be as favourable as before. Which is not the case with pin up casino. In addition to sports betting all the best gambling products are represented here, including live dealers.