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Lionel Messi could play in Vancouver against Whitecaps FC next May

Inter Miami is set to face Vancouver Whitecaps FC on May 25, 2024 at BC Place; will Lionel Messi play?
lionel-messi
Lionel Messi with the World Cup.

The Vancouver Whitecaps are set to host Inter Miami at BC Place on May 25 and that can mean just one thing.

And that is the possibility eight-time Ballon D’Or winner and reigning World Cup champion Lionel Messi could make an appearance on the pitch.

Many factors could lead Messi not to play in Vancouver for the Major League Soccer tilt, however, based on past reports of how he is managing his workload at the age of 36.

Messi will turn 37 years old on June 24. Another significant factor is a reluctance to play on artificial turf, with BC Place being one of six artificial grass fields, according to Sportico, which reported Messi skipped a game last September in Atlanta, which also has artificial grass. However, Messi was also reported to have been open to playing on artificial turf and on Oct. 22 he played at Bank of America Stadium against Charlotte FC.

And if workload is an issue, Miami will need to consider flying Messi across the continent for the one game in Vancouver, which is among the 29-team league’s smaller markets (with the 27th ranked attendance figures for 2023). Miami plays league games at home on May 18 and May 29.

Messi’s team is also scheduled to play in Montreal May 11 and Toronto Oct. 5.

The Whitecaps said Wednesday single match tickets will go on sale in the new year, with season members receiving priority pre-sale access. The season opener is March 2 against Charlotte FC.

gwood@glaciermedia.ca

This article was updated with new information