Why Lionel Messi Chooses America's Inter Miami: A Perfect Blend of Ambition, Prestige, and Business Opportunities

In a move that sent shockwaves across the football world, Lionel Messi announced his departure from Barcelona and his subsequent move to Inter Miami. The decision left many questioning why the Argentine superstar chose the United States as his new home. Was it purely about money, the allure of club ownership, or perhaps the opportunity to win the 2026 World Cup? This article delves into the reasons behind Messi’s decision and explores the enticing factors offered by Inter Miami that other destinations failed to match.

The Transformation of Major League Soccer

The Arrival of David Beckham

Inter Miami’s journey began when footballer, actor, and model David Beckham emerged as the owner of the club. Beckham’s star power and global appeal brought renewed attention to Major League Soccer (MLS).

The Revitalization of Major League Soccer’s Image

Before Beckham’s involvement, MLS struggled to attract big-name stars. However, his arrival reinvigorated the league, paving the way for a new era of international talent.

Attracting Star Players to MLS

Inter Miami’s signing of Lionel Messi exemplifies the league’s growing appeal to footballers at the pinnacle of their careers, seeking new challenges and opportunities outside of Europe.

David Beckham met Lionel Messi in France
David Beckham met Lionel Messi in France

Lionel Messi’s Priorities: Beyond Money

Messi’s Value of Honor and Respect

Throughout his career, Messi has emphasized that monetary rewards are secondary to the honor and respect he receives. His decision to reject the lucrative offer from Saudi Arabia underscores his commitment to finding a destination that aligns with his values.

Disappointment with Barcelona

The breakdown in contract negotiations with Barcelona left Messi feeling undervalued and unappreciated. Inter Miami offered a fresh start and an opportunity to regain the respect and support he desired.

Inter Miami’s Ability to Meet Messi’s Demands

In contrast to Saudi Arabia and other potential suitors, Inter Miami managed to fulfill Messi’s demands for both financial compensation and the respect he craved. The club’s offer showcased a combination of competitive salary and a promising future.

The Lucrative Contract with Inter Miami

A Respectable Salary

While money may not be Messi’s primary motivation, Inter Miami’s contract presented a substantial salary. Over two and a half years, Messi will earn a total of $150 million, making him the highest-paid player in MLS history.

Off-Field Earnings with Adidas and Apple

Inter Miami’s association with global heavyweight brands Adidas and Apple played a significant role in Messi’s decision. Adidas, already a partner of the club, included Messi in their contract, ensuring that a portion of jersey sales with his name would contribute to his earnings. Similarly, Apple’s 10-year deal with MLS guarantees that every Apple TV subscription purchased to watch Inter Miami games will contribute to Messi’s revenue.

Capitalizing on Merchandising Opportunities

Previous sponsorship deals failed to benefit Messi financially, but Inter Miami’s partnership with Adidas and the global appeal of MLS provide a unique opportunity for the Argentine to profit from merchandising. Messi has the potential to earn an estimated 100-150 million euros over the next two years from jersey sales alone.

Business Opportunities and Club Ownership

Following David Beckham’s Footsteps and Ownership of the Club as a Long-Term Benefit

One of the allures of Inter Miami for Messi is the chance to follow in the footsteps of club owner David Beckham. At the end of his two-and-a-half-year contract, Messi will have the opportunity to own a portion of Inter Miami’s public shares. Messi’s ownership stake in Inter Miami presents a long-term benefit. It offers him a potential role in shaping the future of the club and the broader landscape of American soccer.

Potential Future Investments in MLS Clubs

Inter Miami’s ownership model allows Messi the possibility of acquiring new clubs in MLS at a nominal price in the future, giving him an avenue to extend his involvement in American soccer beyond his playing career.

The Ideal Lifestyle for Messi

A Balanced Schedule

Inter Miami’s contract offers Messi a balanced schedule, with six months of vacation and six months of football. This arrangement ensures that the Argentine superstar can enjoy downtime while continuing to perform at a high level.

Miami’s Glamour and Proximity to Hollywood

Located next to the glitz and glamour of Hollywood, Miami offers Messi a vibrant and exciting city to call home. The appeal of living in a cosmopolitan hub with numerous entertainment options likely played a role in Messi’s decision.


Lionel Messi’s decision to join Inter Miami represents a strategic and ambitious move that combines prestige, business prospects, and a chance to leave a lasting impact on American soccer. Beyond financial considerations, Messi sought honor, respect, and a fresh start. Inter Miami’s ability to meet these demands, coupled with the enticing offers from global brands like Adidas and Apple, solidified his decision. As Messi embarks on this new chapter, his move to America’s Inter Miami showcases the growing appeal and transformation of Major League Soccer, setting the stage for an exciting era of football in the United States.

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