Lionel Messi likely to miss Inter Miami’s match vs. D.C. United with hamstring injury

Inter Miami superstar Lionel Messi is dealing with a leg injury that will likely cause him to miss the team’s next match.

Messi checked out of Wednesday’s 3-1 win over Nashville just a few minutes into the second half, and coach Gerardo “Tata” Martino said the 36-year-old was experiencing discomfort in his right hamstring area. He was removed from the game as a precaution.

“He is overloaded in the right posterior,” Martino said through a translator. “We don’t want to run a risk. We tried to see if he could go further along (in the game), but it was bothering him so we preferred to have him get out of the game.”

Messi had a goal and an assist before leaving the game in the 50th minute.

Inter Miami CF vs Nashville SC CONCACAF Champions Cup Highlights | FOX Soccer

Inter Miami advanced to the CONCACAF Champions Cup quarterfinals with the win and 5-3 advantage in aggregate goals in the total-goals series.

Martino said Messi will likely be rested for Inter Miami’s MLS match against D.C. United on Saturday as further precaution.

Messi had played every minute of the season before being rested in Sunday’s 3-2 loss to Montreal.

He was injured late in the first leg of the CONCACAF Champions Cup round of 16 at Nashville last Thursday. Messi went down late in regulation of that game when Nashville defender Lukas MacNaughton stepped on his calf. A trainer checked on Messi, who writhed in pain on the pitch, but he remained in the game.

He had been listed as questionable with a shin injury entering Sunday’s game against Montreal.

Martino said Wednesday that Messi will undergo tests, and the team will evaluate from there.

Inter Miami is currently amid a busy March that includes seven matches — four of which have come in a 10-day span. Messi is expected to join the Argentinian national team in a pair of Copa America warm-up matches on March 22 and 26.

Reporting by The Associated Press.

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