Lionel Messi will miss Miami's game against NYCFC, could return for Champions Cup quarterfinal

Lionel Messi #10 of Inter Miami CF reacts against the Nashville SC during the first half in the Concacaf Champions Cup Round of 16 match at Chase Stadium on March 13, 2024 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

Lionel Messi's hamstring injury will keep him sidelined for Inter Miami's home game against New York City FC on Saturday, but he could return for the CONCACAF Champions Cup quarterfinal first leg against Mexico's Monterrey on April 3.

After missing Saturday, Messi will have played in nine of 19 MLS matches since joining Miami last summer.

“He is working with the physios," Miami coach Javier Morales said Friday, “but he won't be available because we are doing all we can to get him ready for next Wednesday. There is a possibility he will play in that game — that is what we are working for.”

Messi has not played for Miami since March 13, when he left a 3-1 win over Nashville just a few minutes into the second half because of discomfort in his right hamstring.

The 36-year-old also missed Argentina's exhibitions this month against El Salvador and Costa Rica.

Miami has won all five matches that Messi has played in this season but has lost two of three without him, including a 4-0 defeat at New York last Saturday.

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