Lionel Messi has been named TIME’s Athlete of the Year for 2023 following his breathtaking debut season with Inter Miami.
After signing for the MLS team in July, Messi went on to help Miami secure its first ever trophy in the Leagues Cup, scoring 10 goals in seven games on their way to the trophy.
The Argentina captain also played an important part in Miami reaching the US Open Cup final, only for Tata Martino’s men to suffer defeat at the hands of Houston Dynamo when he missed out through injury.
In his first campaign Stateside, he scored a total of 11 goals in 14 games for Miami, who came close to pulling off a late dash to the MLS playoffs.
Messi mania well and truly swept through America, with his Miami jersey said to be so in-demand that even co-owner David Beckham was forced to wait for them to gift to friends.
And following his remarkable impact on US soccer, TIME have announced Messi as their 2023 Athlete of the Year.
Lionel Messi has been named TIME’s Athlete of the Year for 2023 following his breathtaking debut season with Inter Miami
Messi has enjoyed a breathtaking start to life at Miami, helping them win their first ever trophy in the Leagues Cup