Messi and the transformation in Miami: from soccer to football
One of the main leaders of the Inter Miami fan groups spoke with AS about the impact of the Argentine’s arrival in MLS.
The arrival of Lionel Messi to Inter Miami has completely paralyzed a city and, to some extent, an entire country. When it comes to soccer, it is perhaps the most significant signing in the history of the United States. This is evident in how Miami and South Florida are preparing for the presentation and debut of the Argentine.
Messi-mania grips Miami
In an interview with AS USA, ‘Cachito’, one of the main leaders of Inter Miami’s supporter group known as ‘Vice City 1896′, revealed how the city is getting ready for Messi’s introduction and debut with The Herons.
Cachito emphasized that every place in the city is adorned with something related to Inter Miami, while tickets and team jerseys are sold out. He also made it clear that Messi’s decision to play in the US has completely transformed the city, shifting its focus from the commonly used US term ‘soccer’ to the more global ‘football’, thanks to the presence of the Argentinean Latino community.
“It’s crazy, everywhere you go, restaurants, everything is related to Inter Miami. Jerseys have sold out, tickets have sold out, everything is sold out.
“On the streets, you encounter people supporting Inter, you see murals with Messi. Miami has changed for the better. It used to be soccer, now it’s football. That’s the reality,” he explained.
The United States wants to be a soccer powerhouse
Likewise, Messi’s arrival in Miami is not seen as a coincidence but rather part of a growth plan that the United States is pursuing for the sport, in which they also aim to become a global powerhouse.
“I don’t believe it is a coincidence. Messi didn’t come to the United States by chance,” the supporter said. “With the Copa America next year and the World Cup in 2026, Americans carefully plan everything they do.
“Messi came here, and there’s no doubt that this will be a highly competitive league. It all goes hand in hand. The idea of MLS and the United States is that, just like the country is a global powerhouse, they also want to be one in football,” he added.