MLS

Messi fury sees Martino call for MLS rules revision on injuries

By Sports Desk May 12, 2024

Lionel Messi was left frustrated by being kept on the sidelines after an injury scare in Saturday's win over CF Montreal, with Inter Miami head coach Gerardo Martino calling for a revision of MLS rulings.

The former Barcelona superstar was visibly furious after being forced off temporarily from a George Campbell foul, with the Miami forward missing a chance to take a presentable free-kick opportunity.

New MLS regulations state players must leave the pitch for two minutes if the referee stops play due to a potential injury that leaves them on the ground for over 15 seconds.

Following the 3-2 triumph over Montreal, Martino questioned the ruling and suggested it punished the wrong party.

"There are situations that must be revised," the Herons boss said.

"In Leo's situation, he was clearly fouled. The player deserved a yellow card, which would mean Messi would've never left the field for two minutes.

"As I understand it, the team that suffered the foul was punished. With these new rule changes, some situations must be revised.

"The infraction was clear and was a yellow card, and ultimately it was us that lost Leo for two minutes."

Miami were left further aggrieved despite making it five straight wins to move three points clear at the Eastern Conference summit.

Luis Suarez failed to leave the pitch in under 10 seconds when replaced by Leo Campana in the 92nd minute, with new MLS regulations meaning the fourth official delayed the substitution for another minute.

"In the case of Suarez, we had a very important difference with the fourth referee in respect to the minute," Martino added.

"We thought Suarez exited the pitch in under a minute, he did not see it that way and so Leo Campana's entry to the game was delayed."

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