Inter Miami, led by Lionel Messi, is set to embark on a thrilling two-game postseason tour of China. This exciting announcement comes just after the conclusion of their 2023 MLS campaign. The team will face off against Chinese Super League sides Qingdao Hainiu FC and Chengdu Rongcheng on November 5th and 8th, respectively. This tour serves as an invaluable opportunity for Inter Miami to expand their global reach and captivate new audiences with their dazzling style of play.
Inter Miami’s Chief Business Officer, Xavier Asensi, expressed his enthusiasm for the club’s expanding horizons, stating, “We’re very excited to continue to expand our club’s global reach, bringing our team to play in front of incredible fans across the globe.” This tour not only allows Inter Miami to showcase their talent internationally but also to connect with passionate fans in new places. The club recognizes the unique opportunity to share their passion for the beautiful game and captivate audiences on a global scale.
Inter Miami’s journey to China follows their unfortunate elimination from playoff contention after a loss to FC Cincinnati. Despite the setback, the team remains dedicated to providing thrilling performances on the field. Lionel Messi, one of the most renowned footballers of all time, has faced his fair share of challenges, including a hamstring injury that limited his appearances in recent MLS games. However, he demonstrated his resilience by appearing for both Inter Miami and the Argentine national team, showcasing his unwavering commitment to the sport.
If Lionel Messi is fit to play during the two-game tour, there is no doubt that he will be the main attraction for fans attending the matches. With 11 goals already under his belt in his first season with Inter Miami, Messi’s presence on the field is a magnet for football enthusiasts everywhere. This tour provides an ideal platform for Chinese fans to witness the brilliance of Messi, as the national team has only participated in one FIFA World Cup thus far.
The Chinese Super League has emerged as a destination for several high-profile Brazilian players in recent years. Stars such as Oscar, Hulk, Alex Teixeira, and Paulinho have graced the league with their skills, although some have since moved on. This tour offers a chance for Chinese fans to witness the allure of a global football club and experience the magic that comes from watching the biggest names in the sport.
Sporting Director and Chief Soccer Officer Chris Henderson emphasized the significance of this tour in the context of Inter Miami’s long-term goals. He stated, “This will be a great opportunity to continue building on our 2023 campaign, in which we achieved our first-ever trophy. We will take this as an opportunity to begin our preparations for 2024, as we look to build on last season and find more success moving forward.” This tour acts as a stepping stone towards further triumphs, providing invaluable experience and preparation for the upcoming seasons.
Inter Miami’s excursion will commence at Qingdao Hainiu’s impressive 50,000-seat stadium, which opened in April. Led by Spanish coach Antonio Carreño, Qingdao Hainiu returned to the Super League in 2023 after successive promotions. Currently placed 13th out of 16 teams, the club aims to finish its season on a high note.
Meanwhile, Chengdu Rongcheng, a relatively young club that secured promotions in three of its first four seasons, earned a spot in the Chinese top flight in 2022, finishing fifth. Situated in sixth place, Chengdu Rongcheng is eager to leave a lasting impression as they take on Inter Miami in the second leg of the tour.
Inter Miami’s postseason tour of China symbolizes an extraordinary opportunity for the club to expand its global presence and engage with fans from different cultures. The allure of watching Lionel Messi, combined with the growing influence of the Chinese Super League, guarantees an exhilarating experience for fans attending these matches. Inter Miami’s journey to China marks a significant milestone in the club’s pursuit of excellence, setting the stage for future success and further establishing their footprint on the world stage.