The first third part of the MLS season has been positive for Inter Miami and to a certain extent, is what the Tata Martino coaching staff expected in spite of the fact that in football terms, they have not yet reached the point where the coach would them to be. Much of that has been down to the spate of injuries which has hit the Fort Lauderdale team hard.

Inter Miami top of the table, leading by a point

For now, the Herons sit top of the Eastern Conference with 31 points, although having played a game more than Cincinnati who are a point behind in second. And in little over a week’s time, Inter Miami’s squad will be further depleted when players report for duty for the Copa América and later, the Olympic Games,

Those pending call-ups will surely have Martino’s coaching staff thinking about who they can bring into the side to cover those who will be on leave. Argentina start their preparations for the Copa América on 3 June in Miami, which means only one thing – the departure of Lionel Messi.

Between now and then, Inter Miami will have Messi for three games before he trundles off to be with the Argentina squad.

Martino will be looking to capitalize on having his captain for those three games and build up as many points as possible to give the team a cushion for when they will be without Messi.

Messi’s last three games with Inter Miami before the Copa América

Inter Miami will visit the Vancouver Whitecaps in Canada this Saturday, May 25, and the coach hopes to have Messi in his travelling squad. The Argentinean seems to have fully recovered from the knock to his knee that had been afflicting him in the most recent games.

A few days later on Wednesday, May 29, the Herons and Messi will host Atlanta United at home. This will be the penultimate game in which they will have the presence of their captain.

Finally, Messi’s last game with Inter Miami before the Copa América is expected to take place on Saturday, June 1 when the team welcome St. Louis CITY to Chase stadium. The Missouri-based outfit are currently ninth in the Western Conference with three wins from 13 games

After facing St. Louis, the eight-time Ballon d’Or winner will report for duty with Argentina to prepare for the friendlies against Ecuador and Guatemala, respectively, as well as the start of the Copa América. The Albiceleste are in Group A with Canada, Chile and Peru, and open their campaign against Canada on 20 June.

Inter Miami’s games without Messi in 2024

CONCACAF Champions Cup

  • Inter Miami 1-2 Monterrey


  • Inter Miami 2-3 Montreal
  • DC United 1-3 Inter Miami
  • New York Red Bulls 4-0 Inter Miami
  • Inter Miami 1-1 New York City
  • Orlando 0-0 Inter Miami

How Inter Miami have fared without Messi

While Messi will be occupied at the Copa América, the MLS campaign will continue as normal. Inter Miami could be without their skipper for games against Philadelphia Union, Columbus Crew, Nashville, Charlotte, Cincinnati and Toronto FC – that is if Argentina make it all the way to the Copa América final on 14 July. If that happens, Messi could possibly return for the July 20 game against the Chicago Fire, or for the start of the Leagues Cup against Puebla on 27 July.

So far this season, Inter Miami has played six games without their talismanic forward in MLS and the CONCACAF Champions Cup – winning just one of those games, drawing two and losing three. It shows how much the team relies on their captain, and Tata Martino will be hoping to find a solution so they can see out the run of games when he will be with Argentina.

Apart from Messi, Inter Miami could also be without Drake Callender, Diego Gómez and possibly Luis Suárez – the latter is rumored to be in Marcelo Bielsa’s plans for the Copa América.


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