Messi's MLS Move and Global Impact Earn Him Time's Athlete of the Year

Is there anything this man hasn't won in his incredible career?

by Sededin Dedovic
Messi's MLS Move and Global Impact Earn Him Time's Athlete of the Year
© Kevin C. Cox / Getty Images

In a rare move, New York's Time magazine has awarded its prestigious Sportsman of the Year award to a foreign athlete, Lionel Messi. The Argentine soccer superstar received the honor after signing for Inter Miami in July 2023.

Messi's selection marks only the second time in history that the award has been given to a non-American athlete. Last year's winner was baseball player Aaron Judge of the New York Yankees, and this year there were many Americans who were candidates on the Times list.

He is considered one of the greatest soccer players of all time, and his achievements continue to amaze fans around the world. In addition to his individual accolades, Messi also led his club teams to numerous successes. He won the Champions League four times with Barcelona, and helped Argentina win the 2021 Copa America and the 2022 World Cup.

Messi's arrival in Miami raised MLS to a higher level

His move to Inter Miami was met with great excitement by fans in the United States. The MLS club hopes that Messi's presence will help them raise their profile and compete for the championship.

Messi made a quick impact at Inter Miami, scoring his first goal for the club in a 2-1 win on his debut. He also helped the club win the Super Cup, but Inter Miami did not qualify for the playoffs. Despite not reaching the playoffs, Messi's first season in MLS was a success.

He was named the league's most valuable player and helped Inter Miami become one of the most popular teams in the league, and fans all over the world, including from Europe, started watching the American MLS. The Argentine is still under contract with Inter Miami for two more seasons and is expected to continue playing at a high level.

He is also an ambassador for the club and helps promote MLS around the world. Messi's selection as Time's Sportsman of the Year is a fitting tribute to one of the greatest athletes of all time.