Lionel Messi’s Inter Miami will face Los Angeles FC this weekend and ahead of their Major League Soccer (MLS) fixture the Herons have had to face a unique predicament. Messi and his Miami teammates have reportedly been asked to “stand in solidarity” with Los Angeles workers. The striking workers at a Los Angeles hotel have asked the Argentine World Cup-winning skipper and Miami players to stay away from certain establishments in the city.
According to Reuters, employees at the Fairmont Miramar in Santa Monica, along with other hotel workers, have been on strike this summer asking for better wages amid increasing housing costs.
“We have learned that Inter Miami and the great Lionel Messi are coming to Los Angeles this week for a match against LAFC on Sunday. As housekeepers, cooks, bellmen and servers, we ask Lionel Messi and his team mates to stand in solidarity with us and stay out of the Fairmont Miramar,” read a statement shared by Unite Here Local 11, a union of workers employed in hotels, restaurants throughout the Southern California and Arizona region.
Inter Miami, however, have not responded to the request yet. A spokesperson, representing the union, claimed that they have not received any reply from the team.
The craze and hype surrounding Inter Miami’s match against Los Angeles FC have reached a whole new level. Football fans in Los Angeles have been desperate to catch a glimpse of Lionel Messi’s magical display in the MLS this weekend.
A report published by CNN claimed that ticket prices for MLS fixture between Inter Miami and Los Angeles FC have emerged as the most expensive ones in the history of the American domestic football league, according to TickPick, an online marketplace. Average ticket price for the match is understood to be hovering around $690, resulting in an increase of a mind-boggling 527%. The highest ticket price is estimated to be as high as $2010. Before Messi’s arrival to Inter Miami, the average ticket price of an MLS game used to cost $110.
TickPick co-CEO Brett Goldberg told CNN that the market is “likely to stabilize prices at their current level, although there’s potential for an upward shift in price due to the heightened demand.” CNN reported that ticket prices for Messi’s regular season debut fixture were almost 1,000% higher than usual for a New York Red Bulls ticket.
Having made his Inter Miami debut against Cruz Azul last month, Lionel Messi has netted 11 goals for the Herons in 10 matches so far. Following Messi’s debut, Inter Miami have been unbeaten in the last 10 matches across all competitions. Inter Miami are currently placed in 14th position on the MLS’ Eastern Conference points table.