Messi warms up with Inter Miami mates

Lionel Messi’s decision to play in the U.S. might be the biggest boost ever for American soccer on the pro stage. Some of the game’s biggest names — Pelé, Franz Beckenbauer, Thierry Henry and Beckham himself — have come to the U.S. toward the end of their careers.



July 18, 2023 - 2:43 PM

Inter Miami FC star player Lionel Messi greets members of the media during his first practice session with his new team, Tuesday, July 18, 2023, at the Florida Blue Training Center in Fort Lauderdale. (Joe Cavaretta/South Florida Sun Sentinel)

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) — Lionel Messi jogged a lap with his new teammates, took part in a warmup drill of players making short passes in a tight circle and before long tapped his left foot at a ball that wound up in the back of an open net.

Inter Miami’s new star wasted no time fitting right in.

The World Cup winner and seven-time Ballon d’Or recipient as the world’s best player took part in a training session with his new Major League Soccer club for the first time on Tuesday, three days after signing a 2.5 year contract that’ll pay him between $50 million and $60 million a year.

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