Watch: Lionel Messi's Glorious Last-Minute Assist To Inspire Inter Miami Comeback
Lionel Messi turned provider as Inter Miami entered the final of the US Open Cup, defeating Cincinnati.
Unarguably one of the finest forwards the world of football has ever seen, Lionel Messi turned into a creator as Inter Miami took on Cincinnati in the US Open Cup semi-final on Wednesday. Trailing 1-2, with only a minute to go before the full-time whistle is blown, Messi produced a sublime assist to help his team pull level 2-2. The Argentine maestro continued his glorious performances on the pith as Inter Miami defeated Cincinnati on penalties to qualify for the tournament's final.
Inter trailed 2-0 with 22 minutes remaining before the Argentine delivered two perfect assists to striker Leonardo Campana to take the game into extra-time.
Messi's compatriot Luciano Acosta put Cincinnati ahead in the 18th minute and American striker Brandon Vazquez doubled the home side's lead with a fine strike from the edge of the box in the 53rd minute.
But in the 68th minute, Messi whipped in a free-kick from the left which was headed home by Campana to breathe some life into what had been a tired display from Gerardo Martino's side.
Cincinnati thought that they had made 3-1 but Yuga Kubo's effort was ruled out for handball and then the Japanese forward was denied by a fine save from Miami keeper Drake Callender who also denied Santiago Arias.
Then in the seventh minute of stoppage time Messi, from deep on the left, swung in a ball to Campana at the back post again and the Ecuadoran forward angled home his header to force extra-time. Here's the video of Messi's assist:
قوووووووووووووووووووووووووووووووووووووووووووووووووووووووووووووووووووووووووووووووووووووووووووووووووووووووووووول اسيسسسسسسسسسسسسسسسسسسست عظيييييييييييييييييم pic.twitter.com/kLChJ7SnjE— Messi World (@M10GOAT) August 24, 2023
As the match went into the penalty shootout, the teams were at 4-4 when Inter Miami goalkeeper saved Nick Hagglund's penalty for Cincinnati. There was no late twist as Inter Miami scored the 5th spot-kick to book their place in the final.
With AFP inputs