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Monday, June 24, 2024

“I’m Not Sure”: Lionel Messi is improving, but he’s not sure whether he’ll be able to play in the Tokyo friendly

<p>The World Cup-winning captain Lionel Messi stated on Tuesday that his leg injury was “getting better,” but he could not promise he would be ready to play in Inter Miami’s preseason friendly against Japan this week.</p>
<p><img decoding=”async” class=”alignnone wp-image-387840″ src=”https://www.theindiaprint.com/wp-content/uploads/2024/02/theindiaprint.com-pm-modi-wishes-the-uk-royal-family-a-swift-recovery-after-king-charles-cancer-diag.jpg” alt=”theindiaprint.com pm modi wishes the uk royal family a swift recovery after king charles cancer diag” width=”1067″ height=”711″ title=”"I'm Not Sure": Lionel Messi is improving, but he's not sure whether he'll be able to play in the Tokyo friendly 3″ srcset=”https://www.theindiaprint.com/wp-content/uploads/2024/02/theindiaprint.com-pm-modi-wishes-the-uk-royal-family-a-swift-recovery-after-king-charles-cancer-diag.jpg 510w, https://www.theindiaprint.com/wp-content/uploads/2024/02/theindiaprint.com-pm-modi-wishes-the-uk-royal-family-a-swift-recovery-after-king-charles-cancer-diag-150×100.jpg 150w” sizes=”(max-width: 1067px) 100vw, 1067px” /></p>
<p>Two days before, indignant supporters in Hong Kong jeered Messi and club co-owner David Beckham, yelling “Refund,” after the legendary player from Argentina was unable to show up for a fully paid friendly.</p>
<p>Before their Wednesday encounter against Japanese champions Vissel Kobe, eight-time Ballon d’Or winner Lionel Messi told reporters, “I don’t know if I can (play) or not but I feel a lot better and really want to do it.”</p>
<p>“We’re going to practice this afternoon and try again. When compared to how I was, I feel wonderful.</p>
<p>Parts of Tokyo’s hip Shibuya neighborhood are decked up in Inter Miami’s pink colors, adding to the excitement around the friendly at National Stadium.</p>
<p>The US Major League Soccer (MLS) club’s worldwide pre-season tour will stop in Japan. Tickets range in price from 10,000 yen ($68) to 200,000 yen ($1,346), with “special experience” packages costing even more.</p>
<p>Nearly 40,000 people in Hong Kong, who had paid comparable prices for their seats, were incensed when Messi remained anchored to the bench throughout their 4-1 victory against a local select XI. They jeered and made thumbs-down gestures.</p>
<p>The organizers of the match were forced to provide an explanation by the Hong Kong authorities.</p>
<p>“I couldn’t play in Hong Kong, which was really unfortunate,” Messi said.</p>
<p>“Unfortunately, this can occur in football; you can’t always play,” he said.</p>
<p>“Especially in these games when we travel so far and people want to watch our games, I always want to participate and play. I’m hoping we can go back to Hong Kong and play a game.</p>
<p>The controversy started last Thursday when 36-year-old Messi entered the game as a replacement six minutes before it ended in Miami’s last game in Saudi Arabia.</p>
<p>He said, “I played the minutes that I did to see how I felt.” “After that, I had an MRI, and it showed that I had oedema, or swelling.”</p>
<p>Miami had not won a preseason game in five years before their victory in Hong Kong. They lost against FC Dallas, another MLS team, twice to Saudi Arabian clubs, and drew 0-0 in El Salvador.</p>
<p>Before the new MLS season begins on February 21, they have one more friendly left, against Argentina’s Newell’s Old Boys at home the following week.</p>

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