Jordi Alba and Lionel Messi Named to MLS Team of the Matchday


Inter Miami CF captain Lionel Messi and defender Jordi Alba have been named to the Team of the Matchday starting XI for Matchday 18 of the 2024 MLS regular season. The pair clinched Team of the Matchday honors following a closely contested 3-3 draw against St. Louis CITY SC at Chase Stadium. Left-back Alba shone on the night with a goal and two assists, while Messi and striker Luis Suárez netted the team’s other goals.

Alba clinched his second TOTM honors of the 2024 MLS season following a masterful performance in Saturday's home match. The dynamic outside back contributed to each Inter Miami goal in the match, securing his third and fourth assists, and second goal on the season. ​​The Spaniard ignited the comeback with an assist to Messi in the 25th minute, delivering a precisely placed pass to the Argentine's left foot, who leveled the score 1-1. Alba continued to flourish until the final moments of the first half, clinching his second pivotal contribution in added time. He slid a pass across the goal for Suárez, who buried the ball and provided the equalizer. This marked Alba's second assist of the match and his fourth of the regular season.

Through the remaining minutes of the match with the team in search of the equalizer, Alba came up big for the hosts in the 85-minute mark. The speedy left-back masterfully timed his run and brought the ball down before making his way into the box and slotting his shot into the near post to tie the match at 3-3. The goal was Alba’s second this regular season.

Meanwhile, Inter Miami captain Messi garnered his eighth MLS Team of the Matchday accolade following another milestone display. Despite conceding early in the first half, the attacking maestro swiftly retaliated, hammering home the first equalizer of the evening with a powerful left-footed strike in the 25th minute. Before the half the captain produced once more, distributing a secondary assist in added time to level the score at 2-2. Messi’s secondary assist was his league-leading 13th assist of the campaign. Notably, with his secondary assist on the play, Messi became the fastest player to 25 goal contributions in an MLS season, recording 12 goals and 13 assists in just 12 appearances to shatter the previous record established by Carlos Vela in 2019 in 16 appearances.