Tensions escalated between FC Dallas and Inter Miami supporters outside the stadium following their League Cup match on Monday.
Lionel Messi, once again demonstrating his heroic influence for his new club, played a pivotal role in orchestrating a remarkable comeback from a 4-2 deficit at the Toyota Stadium.
The seven-time Ballon d’Or recipient initiated the scoring for Inter Miami, capitalizing on a pass from the newly acquired Jordi Alba within the first six minutes of the game.
Although FC Dallas swiftly regained momentum, netting three goals, Benjamin Cremaschi’s contribution provided Inter Miami with a lifeline.
A subsequent own goal from Robert Taylor reestablished a two-goal lead for FC Dallas. Yet, Messi reemerged as the focal point, delivering a precise free-kick into a perilous area.
The ball glanced off Dallas defender Marco Farfan and found the net, further amplifying Messi’s impact on the match.
As the game reached its conclusion, the intense emotions surrounding the contest translated into clashes between supporters of FC Dallas and Inter Miami outside the stadium, underscoring the passionate nature of football fandom.
Just five minutes later, the diminutive maestro, Lionel Messi, conjured yet another display of his enchanting skills.
True to his trademark style, he elegantly curved a free-kick over the defensive wall and into the top corner, effectively leveling the match and setting the stage for a penalty shootout.
During the ensuing penalty shootout, both Messi and Sergio Busquets displayed their precision from the spot, securing Inter Miami’s advancement to the last 16 of the competition.
However, the euphoria of victory was marred by an unfortunate incident involving a clash between opposing sets of fans outside the stadium after the match.
A video clip has surfaced capturing the altercation between the two groups of supporters, although the exact cause of the confrontation remains unclear.
The footage provides a glimpse into the intense emotions evoked by the match and its aftermath.
Dallas and Leo Messi fans get in a post game fight outside the stadium! pic.twitter.com/CtDnPpumYL
— Leo Messi 🔟 Fan Club (@WeAreMessi) August 7, 2023
Meanwhile, FC Dallas players were spotted taking pictures with Messi after their defeat, with the players unwilling to let their loss get in the way of a good photo opportunity.
After the full-time whistle, Inter Miami manager Tata Martino waxed lyrical about his No. 10.
“We have the best player in the world. That can’t be ignored. When we have our moments, the team is lethal,” he said, before being asked where the team would be without Messi.
“This question always gets asked in the places where he is. Someone can bet on what Barcelona would’ve looked like without Messi, what the Argentina national team would look like without Messi or anywhere he’s been.
“Fortunately, we have him, and today he once again showed he’s a tremendously important player. The majority of times there’s a free kick in this area, and I think only with him do you get the feeling that it’s going to be a goal.
“A free kick usually is something where you think it won’t be a goal 90 percent of the time, but when he has it, it’s the opposite. You think it won’t be a goal 10 percent of the time, but the rest it will be.”