Why did Lionel Messi miss his first match of the MLS season?

Why did Lionel Messi miss his first match of the MLS season?

Lionel Messi’s Inter Miami suffered a chaotic 3-2 loss in their home tie against CF Montreal last night marking the Florida-based team’s first defeat of the season across all competitions.

The Herons were returning from a controversial 2-2 draw against Nashville in the round-of-16 first-leg of the CONCACAF Champions Cup in the midweek.

During the tie, Messi went to contest a pass from Nashville defender Lukas MacNaughton, who unfortunately stepped on the veteran’s calf with his studs and twisted his left ankle.

The Barcelona legend received treatment on the sidelines and managed to play the full 90 minutes plus stoppage time.

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He left the match with a bruise on his shin and was expected to sit out the game against Montreal ahead of a demanding Inter Miami schedule.

Manager Tata Martino will need Messi for the return leg of the CONCACAF Champions Cup tie on Wednesday (March 13). Lionel Messi has been in top form this season scoring four goals and creating one assist in four appearances across all competitions.

“Team spokesman says the official reason for Messi’s absence is “rest.” Inter Miami — which is amid a four-game-in-12-day stretch — plays a decisive Concacaf Champions Cup match this coming Wednesday.”

It was a smart decision by the manager to give Messi a breather to preserve him for the upcoming tight schedule. Lionel Messi is the glue to Inter Miami’s attack, but without him in the mix, the team looked lost.

Despite the defeat, Inter Miami sit on top of the Eastern Conference and are level on points with four teams.