Inter Miami CF are without forward Gonzalo Higuain for Saturday's rivalry game (3:30 pm ET | TV & streaming info) against Orlando City SC, after one of the league's newest Designated Players picked up a red card following the team's 2-1 loss last weekend against the Montreal Impact for directing abusive language toward the referee.
Head coach Diego Alonso knows they'll need the Argentine when chasing a spot in the Audi 2020 MLS Cup Playoffs, so they're moving to rectify the situation.
"Without a doubt we don’t like any player to be sent off," Alonso said Thursday. "We spoke about it, we had a conversation about it. ... It’s something we need to correct."
The red card came six games into Higuain's MLS career, and he's expected to miss one match. Still, his actions leave the expansion team in a tough spot and they need points against one of the Eastern Conference's best teams to reach the playoffs.
Alonso attributes Higuain's red card to his passion and commitment to his teammates, but acknowledges that the player possibly went too far in the moment.
"Me personally, I like players who are defending his team but on the field. It’s not necessary to get sent off to show your commitment," Alonso said. "Gonzalo is very committed to this club, with his teammates, the coaching staff. ... The referee cannot be an excuse for us. But now we’ve left that behind, we’ve talked about it privately, and we’re very clear on how to move forward."