Lionel Messi’s arrival at Inter Miami has not only stirred the sports scene but has also brought a true revolution to American soccer business. With the strategic vision and magical aura of the Argentine, the American club is paving its way toward impressive financial records that could even rival European giants. This is undoubtedly the “Messi Effect” in action.
Xavier Asensi, the director of Inter Miami, has projected a record revenue of $200 million for the club in 2024. This figure is more than three times the initial target set before Messi’s arrival and would mark an unprecedented achievement in the history of Major League Soccer (MLS). To put it into perspective, this number would put Inter Miami on par with renowned European clubs like Paris Saint-Germain and Bayern Munich in terms of revenue.
Comparison with Flamengo, one of the richest clubs in the world, is inevitable. The Brazilian club recorded a staggering revenue of R$1.177 billion in 2022, approximately $240 million, and expects to reach R$1.001 billion (or $204 million) in 2023. If Inter Miami’s projections materialize, they will be competing at the same financial level as one of Brazil’s biggest clubs, which is a remarkable achievement for an MLS club.
But how did Inter Miami achieve this impressive feat? The answer lies in strategy. The club didn’t rely solely on Messi’s popularity but also made savvy moves. They included clauses in sponsorship contracts that foresaw significant increases in case they signed a star of Messi’s caliber. Furthermore, they are actively pursuing new sponsorship deals, capitalizing on the moment when their assets are at the peak of their value.
Forbes has already reported that Inter Miami earned $56 million in 2022 and predicts revenues surpassing $100 million in 2023, before reaching the ambitious goal of $200 million in 2024. This is a remarkable upward trajectory that shows how soccer, when well managed and strategically planned, can become a successful venture in the United States.
The “Messi Effect” is not just a story of individual success on the field; it’s a story of how a player can drive a revolution in soccer business. Inter Miami is shaping the future of MLS and proving that with the right combination of talent and strategy, American clubs can compete on a global level, both on the field and in the financial spreadsheets. American soccer is undoubtedly entering a new era of prosperity and visibility.