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Beyond delivering standout performances, there is a much broader role that top players have at their respective clubs. Consider Lionel Messi, who is not only helping Inter Miami on their domestic journey but also producing wonders for them off the field. While the presence of La Pulga has undoubtedly made the Herons a club that every player would want to play for, there remains a downside. According to MLS expert Matt Doyle, David Beckham‘s soccer franchise might be using the ‘you get to play with Messi’ discount to sign their top targets.

The hilarious take was made in the latest episode of the ‘Extratime’ podcast. Interestingly, Doyle said, “I feel like a lot of these guys are taking a ‘you get to play with Messi’ discount.” He continued, “Like a lot of these guys are thinking ‘I’ll sign this deal and then probably make more on the deal coming off of this one because I’m going to score goals for fun because I’m playing with the greatest playmaker of all time.’”

While it’s quite an interesting assertion from Doyle, even if it were true, we could understand the players’ feelings. Without a doubt, sharing a locker room alongside a player like Messi is an opportunity that comes once in a lifetime, even if it comes at the cost of financial sacrifices. Not just the Argentinian superstar, but there are many big names who influence the transfer of other players. His arch-rival Cristiano Ronaldo is one of the examples to consider.

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USA Today via Reuters

The Portuguese superstar moved to Al Nassr, which led to the influx of a lot of players from Europe to Saudi Arabia. Messi himself attracted big names to the league like Luis Suarez, Sergio Busquets, and Olivier Giroud. His presence even helped Miami steal a key signing from his former club!

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How did Inter Miami use Lionel Messi to ruffle the feathers of FC Barcelona? 

Federico Redondo’s recent acquisition by Inter Miami has garnered attention, not only due to the youngster’s talent but also because Tata Martino’s team managed to outmaneuver FC Barcelona to secure his signature. Despite arriving in the Magic City months ago, some of the La Liga side’s officials still harbor frustration over their failure to secure the talented defensive midfielder, who was their target during the recent January transfer window. 

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Inter Miami deserves praise for also fending off interest from Barcelona’s arch-rivals, Real Madrid, who initially expressed interest in Redondo. Los Blancos had hoped the former Argentinos Juniors star would follow in his father, Fernando Redondo’s footsteps, to join them at the Bernabeu. Hence, this proves that Inter Miami is indeed leveraging the Lionel Messi card to sign players and further capitalize on his presence for as long as he remains with the club.

Written by

Abhishek Mishra

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Abhishek Mishra is a senior Soccer Writer at EssentiallySports. His early exposure to playing soccer earned him many accolades at college divisions, making him a sports enthusiast. While closely following daily updates for over a decade, Abhishek is well-versed in European soccer and now the MLS, as well.
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Edited by

Arijit Saha