The match went into penalty kicks with the game tied at 1-1. After Inter Miami came out on top in the penalty shootout 10-9 thanks to a leaping save by goalkeeper Drake Callender, the team will cash in the $2 million title prize and secure a stop in the 2024 Concacaf Champions League round of 16.
The championship comes courtesy of Lionel Messi, who has turned one of Major League Soccer's worst-performing squads into perhaps its best team in the course of roughly one month, with the help of Callender, newly signed coach Tata Martino, breakout star Robert Taylor, and a freshly supercharged roster that includes two of Messi's former teammates.
Launching kicks from far beyond the penalty box and finding angles that left goalkeepers' heads spinning, Messi scored ten goals in seven games and led Inter Miami to win every game since he stepped on the field for the start of the Leagues Cup.
If you missed any of the heroics or just want to bask in the glory once more, here are Messi's top five goals since he joined Inter Miami.
The soccer legend surely was out to make his MLS debut memorable and he did just that. In the 94th minute, with the game tied at 1-1 against Cruz Azul, Messi sent a freekick over a wall of defenders into the upper left corner of the net in magnificent fashion.
Can't Stop the GOATSurrounded by a sea of yellow jerseys in the Leagues Cup championship, Messi scored his tenth MLS goal to give Inter Miami the lead in the 24th minute against Nashville SC.
This angle of Lionel Messi's goal.pic.twitter.com/VtgmT1dJl3— Roy Nemer (@RoyNemer) August 20, 2023
Thirty-Yard Strike In a 4-1 win against Philadelphia Union in the Leagues Cup semifinals, Messi ripped a long-range shot past three defenders that diving goalie Andre Blake simply could not stop.
LIONEL MESSI IS GOING TO SCORE A MILLION GOALS IN MLS 🤣pic.twitter.com/FXZljzP0NI— Joe Pompliano (@JoePompliano) August 15, 2023
One for the Road
Trailing FC Dallas by one goal in the Leagues Cup round of 16, Messi scored a mesmerizing free kick into the upper right corner of the net. Inter Miami went on to win in a penalty shootout.
LEAGUES CUP: FC Dallas v Inter Miami is just silly.— Ben Steiner (@BenSteiner00) August 7, 2023
Looks scripted. Going to penalties.
🦩Messi 1-0 ('7)
🐂Quignon 1-1 ('37)
🐂Kamungo 2-1, '(45)
🐂Velasco 3-1, ('63)
🦩Cremaschi 3-2 ('65)
🐂Own goal 4-2 ('68)
🦩Own goal 4-3 ('80)
🦩Messi 4-4 ('85)pic.twitter.com/XLC7N4tQJw
Brilliant Volley Against Orlando
Evidently it doesn't take much time for Messi to get warmed up. Just seven minutes into Inter Miami's round of 32 match against Orlando City SC, Messi slid behind a couple of defenders, took a beautiful pass from Robbie Taylor off his chest, and kicked the ball right out of the air into the back of the net. He went on to score again in the 3-1 win.
4. Messi vs Orlando City— ZIAD IS HAPPY FOREVER 🇦🇷 (@Ziad_EJ) August 3, 2023
WHAT A GOAL pic.twitter.com/P06LjNWrXJ