Lionel Messi to start for Inter Miami vs. Newell’s Old Boys


Lionel Messi is set to start for Inter Miami in their friendly match vs. Newell’s Old Boys on Thursday at the DRV PNK Stadium.

Coach Gerardo Martino confirmed it in today’s press conference:

“I am happy to confirm that he is going to start because that is what we need in order to get him ready.”

It will be Inter Miami’s first game of 2024 at home. So far, they have played six pre-season friendly matches, five of them outside the United States. They lost three, tied two and won one. This one against Newell’s Old Boys will be their last game before the MLS season starts when they face Real Salt Lake on February 21 at home.

It will be a special match for Lionel Messi and Gerardo Martino since both have a strong relationship with Newell’s.

Here is what Inter Miami’s coach had to say in the preview to Thursday’s game:

“It is a nice possibility that Newell’s could be here enjoying this match with so many important figures. I know that it is also a delicate moment because their league is going on, but as far as possible, I hope they can enjoy the game.”

Martino also shared an injury update on Messi. During the Asian tour, Leo didn’t play the match in Hong Kong.

“Leo had some inflammation of his adductor during the first game against Al Hilal. That’s why he played 10 minutes during the first game, why he could not play in Hong Kong and why he played a little bit longer during the game in Japan.

“A player’s health must always come first.”

Inter Miami vs. Newell’s Old Boys will be streamed by Apple TV through the MLS Season Pass.

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