Lionel Messi sits out as Dynamo beat Miami in U.S. Open Cup

Lionel Messi missed a chance to play in the third league game, and Inter Miami had to settle for a road draw against an Orlando City team competing for a prime playoff seeding. Since joining the team in July, Messi has only lost once in 15 games. This impressive run includes winning the Leagues Cup, which marked Messi's 44th trophy, setting a record. They also advanced to the final of the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup. So, what are the chances for Messi and Inter Miami to chase the MLS Cup trophy? Well, it's a bit more complicated now, especially with uncertainty surrounding Messi's health.

Written by - Md imdad 

Inter Miami coach Tata Martino had previously mentioned that Messi would "miss at least three games" as the team aimed to secure a spot in the MLS postseason field. Interestingly, Messi has already missed three games. So, which games will Messi be absent for Miami? There are two FIFA international match windows during the crucial MLS playoff race. Argentina is scheduled to play 2026 World Cup qualifiers on September 7th (against Ecuador), September 12th (against Bolivia), October 12th (against Paraguay), and October 17th (against Peru).

What is the probability of Inter Miami making the MLS playoffs? It's not looking great! Inter Miami had a tough time before the Messi era, finding themselves at the bottom of the Eastern Conference. However, recent results have improved their standings, providing some hope for a late push towards the playoffs. Currently, Inter Miami has 32 points from 29 games played and is five points behind the ninth-place team, New York City FC. Importantly, many of the teams ahead of Miami in the standings have played at least one more game, so having games in hand can work in their favor.

Inter Miami's coach insists that Messi will play again this season. Tata Martino stated, through a translator, after Wednesday's loss, that Messi will "absolutely play before the season is over." But take it with a grain of salt, especially if you're trying to buy a ticket to watch Messi play in the final five Inter Miami matches of this season.

How did we find out that Messi would miss the US Open Cup final? Martino was forthright in saying that Alba would likely miss the match. However, the suspense regarding Messi's availability persisted until an hour before the match when he didn't arrive with his teammates on the team bus and wasn't listed on the game day lineup. Martino had been talking for weeks about Inter Miami's focus on the Open final, hoping that enough rest for Messi and Alba could lead to their availability and Inter Miami's chance to lift another trophy during Messi's brief tenure.

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