Josef Martinez was one of the many Inter Miami players who benefited from the signing of Lionel Messi. The Venezuela international quickly formed a good partnership with the World Cup winner, scoring some crucial goals, particularly in the US Open Cup Final, where the Florida-based club lost 2-1 to Houston Dynamo.
Just one season into his Inter Miami career, Josef Martinez is set to be released by Inter Miami, despite being close friends with Lionel Messi. The club’s manager confirmed this in a press conference last week, a claim that has since been made official on the club’s website.
Why is Josef Martinez leaving Inter Miami?
Josef Martinez’s Inter Miami career is officially over. The club confirmed this yesterday when Martinez was revealed not to be returning for the 2024 MLS season. This was the biggest shock of the offseason for Inter Miami, as the Venezuelan had just spent one season at the club, with the second half of the season proving to be more productive, thanks to Lionel Messi’s arrival.
According to MLS, Inter Miami’s decision not to renew Martinez’s contract was due to a rumored move for Luis Suarez, who is set to leave Brazilian outfit Gremio in December. The David Beckham-owned franchise tried so hard to reunite the Uruguayan with his best friend, Lionel Messi, in July, with the former Liverpool forward threatening his new club with a strike in a bid to push a move to the MLS.
However, nothing materialized, and Suarez ended up staying in Brazil. Inter Miami look far from giving up on reuniting the two players who won everything together at Barcelona. If Suarez ends up joining Inter Miami in December, this will be great for Inter Miami, who are set to mount a serious challenge in the MLS next season.
Lionel Messi’s new club fell short in the Argentine’s absence. With a team consisting of former Champions League winners like Messi, Suarez, Busquets, and Jordi Alba, Inter Miami should take things to the next level when the season begins next year.
Lionel Messi has already started his offseason in the best way possible, taking his family to pose for a picture with popular UK musician Ed Sheeran.
Josef Martinez’s friendship with Lionel Messi
Messi quickly hit it off with Josef Martinez when he joined Inter Miami. The Venezuelan was seen by Messi’s side in the Argentine’s first training session with Inter Miami. The World Cup winner was introduced alongside Martinez for his first game in new colors, kickstarting an unlikely bromance between the two South Americans.
Fans took note of this and made some light-hearted jokes about the two. “Someone should check on De Paul,” a fan said in reference to the Atleti man being Messi’s best friend.
With Martinez set to leave the club, Messi will have to cope without his newly-found friendship with the Venezuelan at the club.
Unlike Martinez, Messi has pledged his future to the club with an emotional message amidst rumors that the Argentine could join Barcelona on loan for a few months in the MLS off-season.
Where will Josef Martinez play next? Drop your predictions in the comments.