Inter Miami CF has announced the signing of seven-time Ballon d’Or winner and World Cup Champion, Lionel Messi.
The Argentine superstar, who will occupy a Designated Player slot, is expected to join the team in the coming days, and his contract will run through the 2025 Major League Soccer (MLS) season.
“I am honored to welcome Leo Messi and his family to their new home,” said Inter Miami CF Managing Owner, Jorge Mas on the club’s official site.
“In 2018, we made a promise to build an ambitious club that would attract the world’s elite players. A club that would transform the global view of fútbol in the United States and ensure that wherever fútbol is discussed, your Inter Miami is part of the conversation.”
“I’m very excited to start this next step in my career with Inter Miami and in the United States,” said Messi.
“This is a fantastic opportunity and together we will continue to build this beautiful project. The idea is to work together to achieve the objectives we set, and I’m very eager to start helping here in my new home.”
“We are overjoyed that the greatest player in the world chose Inter Miami CF and Major League Soccer, and his decision is a testament to the momentum and energy behind our League and our sport in North America,” said MLS Commissioner Don Garber.
“We have no doubt that Lionel will show the world that MLS can be a League of Choice for the best players in the game. We look forward to seeing his debut for Inter Miami in our Leagues Cup tournament later this month.”
Messi will first be available for selection for Inter Miami CF when they take on LIGA MX side, Cruz Azul in the July 21 opening match of Leagues Cup, a new North American soccer tournament in which MLS and LIGA MX will pause their respective league seasons from July 21 to August 19 to determine the three clubs that will qualify for the 2024 Concacaf Champions Cup.
All 47 first division clubs in Canada, Mexico and the US will compete in the World Cup-style, official Concacaf tournament.