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Lionel Messi In Chicago: With Star Questionable To Play, Chicago Fire Offers Ticket Credits To Sold-Out Crowd


CHICAGO — With Lionel Messi’s availability in question for his highly-anticipated match against the Chicago Fire F.C. on Wednesday, the team is offering a ticket credit plan to any fans who may be “disappointed” to miss the soccer star.

The Chicago Fire announced Tuesday the team will be offering a $250 “new membership” credit for ticket packages next season or a $50 discount towards tickets next year for those who don’t want to buy a multiple-game ticket package.

The ticket credit offer is available to those who bought single-game tickets to see the Fire play Messi’s Inter Miami team Wednesday at Soldier Field. It is available regardless of whether Messi plays in the match, according to the Fire.

“While we don’t yet know the official status of Lionel Messi’s availability for our match tomorrow, as there’s never a guarantee that an athlete will play on any given night due to several factors, we understand that many of our fans may be disappointed if they don’t get the chance to see him play,” Fire management wrote in a statement.

“We realize that there will be many in attendance who are coming to a Chicago Fire match at Soldier Field for the first time, and we’re excited to welcome them to the Fire Family and give them an opportunity to become long-term fans by creating a wonderful, fan-focused atmosphere,” the team said via a statement.

The Chicago Fire said they will share more information later this week on how ticket holders can redeem their credits for next season.

The Fire-Inter Miami match sold out Soldier Field, with 61,000 tickets sold. The match saw ticket prices soar, with cheapest tickets in Soldier Field’s lower bowl costing were around $338, taxes and fees included.

Soldier Field’s upper decks were later opened for the match, with the Fire offering tickets to those seats as part of a three-game package to other Fire matches this season for $139.

Comparatively, the tickets for the following game against Charlotte FC are only $40 with taxes and fees included.

Chicago Fire will host a “Burnham Downs” tailgate party with food trucks, drinks and games before the 7:30 p.m. match. There will also be a “surprise halftime performance” during the match.

Messi, arguably the greatest soccer player of all time, made the decision to join Inter Miami in Major League Soccer earlier this summer from Paris Saint Germain. 

Thus far, he has delivered on the hype, scoring 11 goals in 12 appearances for the team, winning the inaugural League Cup in the process.

Messi hasn’t played since Sept. 20, when he exited a game against Toronto FC after playing only 37 minutes. Neither the team nor Messi have disclosed the nature of his absence. Inter’s coach Tata Martino said that Messi’s status was day-to-day ahead of the Fire match.

The game has big implications for both teams as both are pushing for one final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference, with the Fire holding a slight edge on points.

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