Lionel Messi’s physical condition recently disqualified him in coach Tata Martino’s book, after an injury could not let the former-Barcelona player finish the first half yesterday. Comments from his MLS club Inter Milan give insights into the club’s possible next options.
The Argentine’s fitness was faulty before Inter Miami clashed with Toronto FC on Wednesday, having been rendered suboptimal during a national duty.
After his return to the USA on a rest break, he watched Atlanta win Inter Miami with 5 goals to two.
This must have made both he and the executives of the club try hard to include him in the next match, which ended in a victory for Inter Miami yesterday by 4 goals to nil. But the Messi had to leave after only 37mins, after his injury seemed to get very uncomfortable.
In the wake of the shattering loss to Atlanta that increased the hurdle the club will have to jump on their way to the top, Inter Miami’s Interim coach, Terry Dunfield had this to say: ‘We’re hoping to see Messi. I think since he’s come to the league, his work has been incredible. Not only individually but how he’s risen the stock of Inter Miami and then his team-mates around him but also the stock of the league.’
A Fellow-academy pupil of Messi’s, Victor Vazquez then shared the same opinion. ‘I think he’s going to be ready Wednesday because he plays in front of his fans again. And also because they can’t miss more points. They need the points … we really need it also. That’s why I say it’s going to be a fun game for us and for the supporters.’
Their position is understandable, given that Lionel Messi was the driving force in the winning of their recent Leagues Cup championship title. The American player has also scored 11 goals in 12 appearances for the club.
Despite these accomplishments, Tata Martino has no intentions of stressing the player farther than has happened, following the recent episode at the pitch. Martino said that even a final will not make him change his mind.
I know we have a final, but in no way will [Messi] step on the field if [Messi is] not in [the condition] to do so.
Everything seems to drop the captaincy on the laps of none other than Robert Taylor, who scored the two goals against Atlanta. But Taylor said he did not have the same influence on the players as Messi has, also pointing out he could not imitate his style.
‘I don’t think there’s much advice he can give on copying his play because no one can copy his play,’ Taylor admitted. ‘I will try to do it again, but I won’t promise it. It’s not like Messi, obviously.
‘It’s very important. I mean right, it’s the most important player for us. But we have to play sometimes without them and it’s important for the rest of us to step up and bring in the results as well.’
One could even say Taylor seemed scared of the leadership job. If he were, that would not be helpful in the coming matches.
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