The best player in the world starred against Ecuador, scoring a late trademark free kick at Estadio Mâs Monumental as his side triumphed 1-0.
There was plenty of injury speculation around Messi’s availability for the clash against Bolivia after he was substituted off in the 89th minute against Ecuador, but that now seems to have shifted toward the 36-year-old being left out of the squad for the September 12 game to get some much-needed rest.
After all, he’s taken part in 11 games for Inter Miami since his debut on July 21 against Cruz Azul when he stole the show with a magical free kick.
Miami are going to need all the help they can get if they are to finish the 2023 MLS regular season in a playoff spot, and having Messi in the squad against Atlanta would be an immense boost for Gerardo ‘Tata’ Martino’s side.
Not only will the clash between the two Eastern Conference teams see attacking football at its finest, but it will also feature a legendary Argentine playmaker in Messi – and potentially the next all-time great for La Albiceleste in Thiago Almada. The young Five Stripes star has shined during the 2023 campaign with a staggering nine goals and 13 assists, with European clubs starting to take notice.
Miami, currently in 14th place in the Eastern Conference with 28 points from 26 games played, will hope that their Argentine superstar is fit enough to take part against Atlanta with roughly 70,000 fans expected to be in attendance for the game.