Miami is leaving no stone unturned for ‘The Unveil’. On Sunday, the American city’s fledgling football club will present its newest signing, World Cup-winner Lionel Messi. And from postar Shakira to rapper Bad Bunny, the who’s who of showbusiness are expected to be there.
Messi is expected to Major League Soccer (MLS) debut on July 21 when Inter Miami take on Mexican team Cruz Azul, but the seven-time Ballon d’Or winner will reportedly be officially revealed by his new team on Sunday, July 16.
The presentation, titled ‘The Unveil’, is set to be held at DRV PNK Stadium in Miami at 20:00 Eastern Time (5.30 am IST, Monday).
According to journalist Franco Panizo, popular artists including Shakira, Maluma and Bad Bunny are slated to perform at Messi’s official presentation.
Save The Date 📅⚽
Major unveiling event set for this Sunday, July 16 at 6PM at @DRVPNKStadium! Tickets will be FREE for Season Ticket Members, while limited tickets may become available for purchase at a later date.
Make sure to stay tuned to our social channels for details… pic.twitter.com/lC5bm9OrfK
— Inter Miami CF (@InterMiamiCF) July 11, 2023
With Messimania reaching a fever pitch, Miami is bracing for an unprecedented boost in tourism and an increase in sales of merchandise and souvenirs. Businesses in Miami are already stocking up on Messi merchandise and expect to do a lot of business in the coming months.
Messi Messi everywhere
Messi is almost everywhere in Miami — from beer cans to burgers and sandwiches. Several restaurants offer combos (burgers and a drink) named Lionel Messi to attract customers.
A cafe has launched a new Messi Chicken Sandwich, inspired by the legend’s favourite food – ‘Milanese’. Then, there is another eatery offering a Messi mojito.
It’s not just food and drinks. There are large murals visible in the artsy Wynwood neighbourhood of Miami. Inter Miami co-owner David Beckham was spotted helping to create the piece of art along with Argentine artist Maximiliano Bagnasco.
Miami is ready! Are you? pic.twitter.com/DdJT7LfAln
In another restaurant – Kao Bar & Grill, north of Miami Beach, Messi’s now-famous words, which he spoke at the World Cup – “Andá pa’ alla bobo!”, or “Go over there, fool!” have been etched with a lifesize poster of the footballer.
Angry after Argentina’s heated victory over the Netherlands in the quarterfinals of the 2022 World Cup, Messi had uttered those words to a Dutch player passing by while he was being interviewed.
Cameras capture Messi’ moves
Messi has landed in Miami, and cameras are catching all his moves in the city. Be it while shopping in a supermarket for cereals or while out at a dinner earlier this week, fans cannot get enough of him.
— Inter Miami CF (@intermiamifc0) July 14, 2023
One such lucky guy caught hold of the World Cup winner and ended up kissing him on the cheeks.
Leo Messi with his family in Miami pic.twitter.com/N1PwKZ8YMu
— Leo Messi 🔟 Fan Club (@WeAreMessi) July 13, 2023
Earlier this week, while leaving a restaurant in Miami, he was quickly surrounded by a crowd of excited fans. The incident was caught on video and quickly went viral on social media. The footage shows Messi being jostled and pushed by the public as he tries to get to his car. Some fans even tried to get autographs from the Argentine star, but he could not stop.
The incident has raised concerns about the safety of Messi and his family while they are in Miami. Inter Miami has said that it is increasing security around the team’s training ground and stadium.
— Meenal (@mbu2617) July 14, 2023
It is clear that Messi is a very popular figure, and his arrival in Miami has created a lot of excitement, and this will only continue to grow with time.