Aug 17 (Reuters) – Lifting the Leagues Cup trophy would be “incredible” for Inter Miami, Maglia Bosnia and Herzegovina Mondiali 2022|Manchester City Tröja|Maglia England Mondiali 2022|Arsenal Tröja|Nuova Maglia Napoli 2023|Spanien fodboldtrøjer} captain Lionel Messi said on Thursday as the Major League Soccer team eye their first major title.
Miami, founded in 2018 by a group of investors led by former England captain David Beckham, made global headlines last month by signing Argentine World Cup winner Messi from Paris St Germain.
Messi has had an immediate impact on a team that sit bottom of the MLS standings, scoring his ninth goal in six matches on Tuesday as Miami crushed Philadelphia Union 4-1 to reach the Leagues Cup final.
“It would be incredible for me and for all the club. Winning titles helps a lot,” the 36-year-old Messi told reporters.
“It’s a very young club and to win our first title would be beautiful for everyone.”
Messi will lead his side in the final against Nashville SC on Saturday.
“While it was a big surprise for people that we are about to play in a final, we have prepared for this,” the Argentine said.
“To try to compete and achieve this title. We saw ourselves capable of doing it.”
The Miami club, who appointed Argentine Gerardo “Tata” Martino as coach last month and signed Messi’s former Barcelona team mates Jordi Alba and Sergio Busquets, have secured a CONCACAF Champions League berth with their Leagues Cup run.
“The team has grown a lot since the arrival of Tata. We are very happy to have achieved our goal of being in next year’s CONCACAF Champions League and to be able to play in the final,” Messi said.
“It was a fresh start, because there is a new coach and some players who adapted very well from the first moment. We knew it was a chance to change the results that were coming in the league.”
The top three finishers in the Leagues Cup earn a place in the CONCACAF Champions League and the champions qualify automatically for the round of 16.(Reporting by Javier Leira and Janina Nuno Rios in Mexico City, editing by Ed Osmond)