Inter Miami signs Argentina forward Lionel Messi until 2025.
The 36-year-old seven-time Ballon d’Or winner will leave Paris St-Germain at the end of the 2022-23 season.
“I’m very excited to start this next step in my career with Inter Miami and in the United States,” said Messi, who led Argentina to World Cup victory last year in Qatar.
David Beckham, co-owner of Inter Miami, called the signing a “dream come true.”
Messi, who has never played for a club outside of Europe, went on to say, “This is a fantastic opportunity, and together we will continue to build this beautiful project.”
“The idea is to work together to achieve the goals we set, and I’m very excited to get started here in my new home.”
“10 years ago, when I started my journey to build a new team in Miami, I said that I dreamed of bringing the greatest players in the world to this amazing city,” Beckham said of gaining the services of a player predicted to win another Ballon d’Or this year.
“[I wanted] players who shared my ambition when I joined LA Galaxy, which was to help grow football in the United States and leave a legacy for the next generation in this sport that we all love.”
“That dream came true today. I am overjoyed that a player of Leo’s caliber has joined our club, but I am also overjoyed to welcome a wonderful friend, an amazing person, and his beautiful family to the Inter Miami family.
“The next chapter of our adventure begins with her, and I can’t wait to see Leo take the field.”
Messi will be eligible for Miami’s League Cup opener against Cruz Azul of the Liga MX on July 21.
“We are overjoyed that the greatest player in the world chose Inter Miami and Major League Soccer, and his decision is a testament to the momentum and energy behind our league and our sport in North America,” said Major League Soccer commissioner Don Garber.
“We have no doubt that Lionel will demonstrate to the world that MLS can be a destination for the best players in the game.” We look forward to watching him make his Inter Miami debut later this month in our Leagues Cup tournament.”
Messi earned the last of his seven Ballon d’Or honors in 2021, and he could win it again later this year after leading Argentina to World Cup victory in Qatar in 2022.
He finished last season with 16 goals and 16 assists in Ligue 1 after scoring 32 goals in 75 games for PSG.
After 21 years with Barcelona, Messi joined the French team in 2021.
Messi has 672 goals for Barcelona and has won 10 La Liga crowns, four Champions Leagues, and seven Spanish Cups.