The Argentine star extended his scoring run in all Leagues Cup 2023 games with a goal from the last third of the field and qualified for the Final.
This victory means that the Herons will compete in the Concacaf Champions Cup in 2024 (one of three League Cup slots) and puts them one game away from winning their first title. Honey Mukhtar & Company advanced to the All-MLS Final on Saturday after defeating Liga MX’s CF Monterrey 2-0 on Tuesday evening.
Miami, which has grown in strength during this incredible League Cup run, scored early again, this time with Josef Martnez’s third-minute effort, which beat Philadelphia Union goalie Andre Blake after Sergio Dest intercepted the ball.
Following that, Messi maintained his Golden Boot lead, scoring nine goals in his first six Miami games in the 20th minute. The Argentine superstar beat Blake from 30 yards out, extending his fantastic MLS journey since joining Miami’s overhauled club on July 15th.
Union’s problems in the first half were exacerbated in stoppage time when a Robert Taylor pass rebounded off Jordi Alba’s ribcage was turned into a goal. Blake was left behind after the famed former FC Barcelona left-back, who also joined Miami this summer, increased the score to 3-0.
Philadelphia appeared to have a lifeline in the 73rd minute when seasoned midfielder Alejandro Bedoya scored on a corner-kick header. However, Miami’s home midfielder David Ruiz sealed a 4-1 victory in the 84th minute, guaranteeing that four goals have been scored in four of the six League Cup matches played in this heat.
3′ – Josef Martnez – MIA | Minute
20′ – Lionel Messi – MIA | Minute
45+3′ – Jordi Alba – MIA | Minute
73′ – Alejandro Bedoya – PHI | Minute
84′ – David Ruiz – MIA | Minute
Three key points:
Big Picture:– Inter Miami is in the CCL in 2024, knocking on the door of greatness, a stunning improvement from their Messi-less difficulties. However, it is the GOAT’s impact that has converted Herons into a goal-scoring force (21 League Cup goals). It’s also heartbreaking for Philadelphia, who once again fell short in a trophy match – where they have historically been influential. However, if they defeat Monterrey on Saturday in the Montevideo vs. Third-Place match, they may be able to earn the 2024 CCL football.
Man of the Match:- duplications for Messi, the game’s ninth goal-winner in the League Cup’s successful manner.
Man of the Match:- Martnez responded to some critiques with a strong first-half effort, helping to build up a 1G/1A performance and setting the tone.
PHI:- CF Monterrey on Saturday, August 19 at 6 p.m. ET (MLS Season Pass) | Leagues Cup Third-Place Game,
MIA:- August 19 vs. Nashville SC | 9 p.m. ET (MLS Season Pass) | Leagues Cup Final