Inter Miami CF’s star players Lionel Messi and Jordi Alba had to leave the game early with injuries in their 4-0 win over Toronto FC on Wednesday night. The MLS team is facing a tough schedule ahead and will hope that their key players can recover soon.
Messi subbed off in the 37th minute
Lionel Messi, who had missed two previous games due to fatigue, returned to Inter Miami’s lineup on Wednesday night. However, his comeback was short-lived as he appeared to suffer a leg injury in the 33rd minute. He tried to continue playing but was visibly struggling and eventually took off his captain’s armband and signaled to be substituted in the 37th minute. He left the field without his cleats, socks and shin guards and headed straight to the locker room.
The game was scoreless when Messi was subbed off and he did not return for the second half. Inter Miami coach Gerardo ‘Tata’ Martino did not provide any details on Messi’s injury after the game and said that the team will evaluate him in the next few days.
Alba also exits with an injury
Messi was not the only Inter Miami player who had to leave the game early with an injury. Jordi Alba, who joined the team in July along with Messi, also had to be replaced in the 34th minute. The left-back seemed to have a problem with his right hamstring and was replaced by Robert Taylor.
Alba has been a key player for Inter Miami since his arrival, providing assists and creating chances from the left flank. He has also formed a good partnership with Messi, who he played with for many years at Barcelona. Martino also did not give any update on Alba’s injury and said that he will be assessed in the next few days.
Inter Miami rally without their stars
Despite losing their star players, Inter Miami did not lose their momentum and scored four goals in the second half to secure a convincing win over Toronto FC. Robert Taylor, who came on for Messi, scored two goals and assisted another one. Facundo Farias and Benjamin Cremaschi also found the net for Inter Miami, who moved up to ninth place in the Eastern Conference standings.
Inter Miami showed their depth and quality without their stars and proved that they are not a one-man team. They also showed their resilience and determination to overcome adversity and keep their playoff hopes alive.
Inter Miami face a daunting schedule ahead
Inter Miami will have to cope without their stars for at least one more game, as they face New York City FC on Saturday. They will then have five more games in 17 days, including two against Atlanta United and one against Philadelphia Union, who are both above them in the table.
Inter Miami will need their stars to recover as soon as possible and hope that they can avoid any further injuries. They will also need their other players to step up and perform consistently. Inter Miami are currently five points behind seventh-placed Montreal, who occupy the final playoff spot in the East. They have eight games left to close the gap and make it to the postseason.