In a preseason clash at Cotton Bowl Stadium on Monday night, Lionel Messi and Inter Miami faced a 1-0 defeat against FC Dallas. The spotlight, however, was on FC Dallas star Jesus Ferreira, who scored three minutes into the match, securing the victory for his team.
- Scoring Moment: Jesus Ferreira’s early goal became the deciding factor, leaving Inter Miami scoreless in their second preseason match, following a 0-0 draw with El Salvador.
- Star Players’ Performance: Messi, along with Inter Miami stars Luis Suárez, Sergio Busquets, and newcomer Julian Gressel, played the first 64 minutes. Despite glimpses of their former chemistry, their attempts to find the net were unsuccessful.
- Missed Opportunities: Messi missed three shots, while Suárez had three opportunities, including one where he needed to stretch for a pass from Messi outside the penalty area.
- Preseason Tour: Inter Miami, yet to score in the preseason, now has a week before their next game on their worldwide tour. They will play two matches in the Riyadh Season Cup in Saudi Arabia, facing Al Hilal on Jan. 29 and Al Nassr on Feb. 1.
- Messi vs. Ronaldo Faceoff: The highlight of the tour will be the Feb. 1 match against Al Nassr, where Messi is set to meet rival Cristiano Ronaldo in what could be their last match together in their illustrious careers.
- Worldwide Preseason Tour: Inter Miami’s extensive preseason tour includes stops in Saudi Arabia, Hong Kong, and Tokyo, covering a distance of more than 25,000 miles.
- Regular Season Opener: Inter Miami will kick off the 2024 MLS season against Real Salt Lake on Feb. 21 at DRV PNK Stadium in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
- Messi’s Impact in Previous Match: Messi had showcased his brilliance in the Leagues Cup tournament against FC Dallas last August, leading Inter Miami to a comeback victory.
- Substitutions and Injury Concerns: Messi and other stars were substituted out in the 64th minute. FC Dallas’ Ferreira also left the match in the 40th minute with an apparent injury.
- Next Matches: The upcoming matches in Saudi Arabia and Japan, especially the Messi vs. Ronaldo encounter, are highly anticipated by soccer fans globally.
In summary, despite the loss, Messi and Inter Miami look forward to the remainder of their preseason tour and the exciting matchups ahead in the 2024 MLS season.