Inter Miami star Lionel Messi’s goal-scoring spree was finally stopped by MSL side Nashville, ending a nine-match win streak

Lionel Messi and Inter Miami’s first encounter with Nashville was in the Leagues Cup final. Although it ended in a deadlock, the 36-year-old World Cup winner registered his name on the scoresheet, just like he’s done in several other MLS matches. 

The ‘honeymoon’ of the seven times Ballon d’Or winner and the David Beckham-owned club might be coming to an end, as the Florida-based soccer club could not find the back of the net in their match against Nashville. The 36-year-old will have to wave his magic wand again to secure a spot in the playoffs. 

Lionel Messi failed to score against Nashville

Lionel Messi has been on fire since he landed in Inter Miami this summer, exceeding everyone’s expectations with his outstanding performances and jaw-dropping goals, game after game. Things were not so rosy for the MLS side before Messi joined. Inter Miami had gone on a straight eleven-game losing streak.

But since the Argentine World Cup winner made his sensational debut for the club, he has led Inter Miami to ten wins in eleven games, scoring eleven goals and assisting three in this unbeaten run.

However, in the Major League Soccer match against Nashville SC, Lionel Messi failed to score as Inter Miami drew 0-0 with Nashville SC. The outcome indicates that Miami could not secure a victory for the first time since Messi’s arrival from PSG in July.

Although the Argentine icon had previously needed penalty shootouts on several occasions to maintain his impeccable record, nonetheless, following his remarkable transfer to the United States, he achieved a triumph in the Leagues Cup, earning his 44th major trophy, along with victories in the U.S. Open Cup and MLS. However, being a League match, there were no penalties to separate both sides.

The 36-year-old World Cup winner, who has carried Inter Miami since joining the club, attempted a total of seven shots in the game but could not break the deadlock. According to BBC, the draw leaves Miami trailing 17 points behind the automatic play-off qualification spots in the MLS, with ten matches remaining remaining.

Nashville’s previous encounter was in the League Cup, where Inter Miami defeated them. On his tactical plan to prevent the recurrence of a defeat, the Nashville head coach Smith, shared the tactical masterclass that shut Lionel Messi and his team out of their goal. He said; 

“We expected, obviously, to concede possession. Of course, Lionel Messi can carve an opportunity out of pretty much nothing. I thought tonight the guys did a wonderful job, especially in and around the penalty area, of getting a block on or blocking his passing lanes and genuinely giving it everything they could to try and really blunt that very bright and purposeful attack that Miami have.”

Nashville ends Inter Miami’s winning streak

Inter Miami were unable to make it ten victories in a row after being held on home soil by Nashville. Nashville FC midfielder Brian Anunga revealed afterward how a Messi goal or assist was prevented. He stated:

 “Gary [Smith] talked about staying very compact and not getting frustrated because they were going to have the ball a lot of the time, staying disciplined and staying focused. Messi likes to drift in those pockets and find those balls, especially behind. So we tried to limit those chances throughout the game. The tactic was to stay compact, stay disciplined and stay focused throughout 90 minutes, which is not easy to do.”

The Florida-based club, co-owned by former England captain David Beckham, currently holds 14th out of 15 teams in the Eastern Conference, having garnered 22 points from 24 matches.

In the MLS, the top seven teams from both the Eastern and Western conferences secure automatic qualification at the conclusion of the regular season. Additionally, the eighth and ninth-ranked teams earn spots in wildcard matches. Subsequently, a knockout structure determines the victor of the MLS Cup.

However, the chances of qualification are now very slim for Inter Miami. Going forward, they would have to win most of their MLS games if they must secure a place in the playoffs. 

Will Messi be able to lead Inter Miami to the playoffs? Make sure to let us know your predictions in the comments.


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