How to watch and stream
- Wednesday, September 20 | 7:30 pm ET/4:30 pm PT
- DRV PNK Stadium | Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Messi and fellow FC Barcelona legend Jordi Alba didn’t feature in Saturday’s 5-2 loss at Atlanta United, with head coach Tata Martino citing “muscle fatigue” as the reason amid a jam-packed schedule. That defeat ended Miami’s 12-game unbeaten run (8W-0L-4D) across all competitions since Messi, Alba, Sergio Busquets and their three U22 Initiative talents arrived mid-summer.
What role awaits Messi, who remained in Miami last weekend to rest following his travels for World Cup qualifiers with Argentina? The answer will be tracked closely.
- Previous: 5-2 loss at Atlanta United
- Record: 8W-15L-4D, 28 points
- Standings: 14th in Eastern Conference
After the ATLUTD setback in Matchday 32, Martino intimated Inter Miami are extra focused on raising a second trophy as US Open Cup Final hosts Sept. 27 vs. Houston Dynamo FC. They previously became Leagues Cup champions and booked a 2024 Concacaf Champions Cup spot in mid-August upon beating Nashville SC on penalty kicks.
But the Herons aren’t disregarding postseason pursuits, either, and now are seven points behind the Eastern Conference’s ninth-and-final playoff spot with seven games to go. Projections say they’ll need 15 points from the remaining 21 available, creating tight margins in the buildup to Decision Day (Oct. 21).
- Previous: 2-1 loss vs. Vancouver Whitecaps FC
- Record: 4W-14L-10D, 22 points
- Standings: 15th in Eastern Conference
The Reds, who own an MLS-low 0.79 points per game, can soon be eliminated from playoff contention. Little has gone to plan in 2023 for the big-spending club, which parted ways with Bob Bradley in late June and have been led by interim coach Terry Dunfield.
What roster changes await Toronto in the winter? General manager Jason Hernandez is making assessments, particularly if Italian international forwards Federico Bernardeschi and Lorenzo Insigne return. The Designated Players, among the league’s highest-paid players, have combined for 9g/9a this year.
We’ve buried the lede somewhat, though: Toronto recently hired Canada men’s national team coach John Herdman to lead what’s likely a new-look squad in 2024. Herdman won’t formally take over until Oct. 1, making trips to Messi & Co. an opportunity for players to impress.