Messi’s return in vain as FC Cincinnati down Inter Miami, eliminating them from MLS playoffs

Spread the love

Inter Miami’s hopes of making it to the MLS playoffs were crushed as they suffered a 1-0 defeat at the hands of FC Cincinnati on a rainy Saturday night in a pivotal clash that marked Lionel Messi’s return from injury in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

Messi, who had been sidelined due to a scar tissue injury in his leg since September 20, made a substitute appearance in the 55th minute. However, his efforts were in vain as FC Cincinnati’s Alvaro Barreal found the back of the net in the 78th minute, securing victory for his team.

Inter Miami (9-17-6, 33 points) had their playoff dreams dashed with this loss, coupled with CF Montreal’s win over the Portland Timbers. The defeat leaves Miami languishing near the bottom of the Eastern Conference, trailing the last playoff spot by seven points, and with just two games left in the season.

FC Cincinnati (20-5-8, 68 points) continued their remarkable season, clinching the Supporters’ Shield for the league’s best regular-season record.

Despite controlling possession for 61.6 percent of the match, Inter Miami struggled to find the target, managing just two shots on goal out of their 16 attempts. 

In the first half, they hit the woodwork on three occasions, with Tomas Aviles, Josef Martinez, and Benjamin Cremaschi all coming close to breaking the deadlock.

Messi’s introduction in the second half provided hope for Inter Miami, but he failed to capitalize on scoring opportunities, sending a free-kick attempt over the crossbar.

FC Cincinnati finally broke through when Barreal capitalized on a parried shot by Miami’s goalkeeper, Drake Callender, in the 78th minute. Despite Messi’s late efforts, including two free-kick attempts and a shot on goal, Cincinnati held on for the win.

The defeat was a bitter blow for Inter Miami, ending their playoff aspirations, while FC Cincinnati celebrated their historic season with yet another victory.

Spread the love

Related posts

Leave a Comment