Explained: The ‘negative impact’ Lionel Messi has made at Inter Miami & why some fans ‘expected more’ from eight-time Ballon d’Or winner

The Argentine icon captured the imagination of an American audience when completing a stunning move to the United States. He delivered Leagues Cup glory within weeks of his arrival in Florida, but sat out the U.S. Open Cup final through injury and was unable to claim a play-off spot in the MLS Eastern Conference.

Messi’s presence in Miami has also meant that the club are no longer as connected with an ever-growing fan base as they once were, with Mike Longin of the Green Lot Gang supporters’ group telling Yahoo Sport: “What made Inter Miami special early on was we had a great supporter group and ownership was really close with the fans. My son has thrown an American football back and forth with [co-owner] Jorge Mas. I’ve drunk a beer with David Beckham. The club did a lot to build outreach. It’s different now. It’s gone from a family atmosphere to a professional atmosphere, which you’d expect. We were a young club and we grew up overnight.”


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