Inter Miami are set to take on Sporting Kansas City at DRV PNK Stadium on September 9, and head coach Gerardo ‘Tata’ Martino will have his hands full when making his team selection due to the international break.
The Herons, in 14th place in the Eastern Conference table with 25 points, are coming off an impressive 3-1 triumph over reigning MLS Cup champions LAFC, but they’ll now be tasked to go for three more points but with a catch: they will be without Lionel Messi.
And Messi is not the only Miami player to depart south Florida for international games, as Drake Callender, Diego Gomez, Benjamin Cremaschi, Serhiy Kryvstov, David Ruiz, Robert Taylor, and Josef Martinez will all miss the game vs Sporting KC.
Martino will still have the likes of Sergio Busquets, Jordi Alba, Leonardo Campana, Facundo Farias, and Tomas Aviles to call upon as the Herons are aiming for a 2023 MLS Cup playoff spot finish.
GK: Nick Marsman – The 32-year-old has made 30 appearances for the Herons in the past before Callender took over in goal and he’ll be called upon against KC.
RB: DeAndre Yedlin – The dynamic full-back didn’t receive a call-up from the USMNT and Martino will look to rely on his first choice at the position.
CB: Tomas Aviles – Although he’s only 19-years-old, the yound center-back has been thrust into the starting lineup on multiple occasions and is set for another start, especially with Kryvstov on international duty.
CB: Kamal Miller – The Canada international has impressed in 2023 and is one of the first names on the team sheet now.
LB: Jordi Alba – The former Spain international has excelled going forward for Miami and looks set to continue his excellent run of form.
CM: Victor Ulloa – He’s no stranger to playing for the Herons, and his play time may increase significantly with the current international break.
CM: Sergio Busquets – Although one veteran is leaving the side temporarily, another remains as the 35-year-old will aim to control the midfield yet again.
CM: Dixon Arroyo – After being left out of the lineup in the last couple of games, Arroyo could be in line to feature from the start.
RW: Robbie Robinson – He’s seen limited minutes since Messi’s arrival couple withTaylor’s top form, but he should get a chance to prove himself at home vs Kansas City.
ST: Leonardo Campana – Martinez has been solid since Messi has been thrown into the mix, but Campana could make a push for the starting job if he goes on a goalscoring run.
LW: Facundo Farias – After scoring his first goal last time out, he is primed to get another shot up front with the lack of attacking players at hand for the game.
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