08.05.2021 - When David Beckham moved to LA Galaxy, nobody could have imagined the impact he would have on soccer in America. Fast-forward to 2021, and Beckham’s expansion franchise is live and ready to cause a ruckus.There seems to be no doubt that Inter Miami will move through the gears and turn themselves into one of the US’ biggest soccer franchises. It’s only a matter of time. However, is there a chance that a fairytale story will develop and Inter Miami will be crowned champions of the MLS earlier than expected? With David Beckham at the helm, anything is possible.
The 2020 Audi MLS Cup Playoffs
The fact is, Inter Miami is the sort of franchise that won’t wait around and pay its dues before it starts taking the world by storm. If anything highlights this, it’s the club’s qualification for the 2020 Audi MLS Cup Playoffs in their debut season.
Only a handful of teams had managed to achieve this previously, and Inter Miami quickly announced their intentions by setting up a play-in round against Nashville SC. Although they were soundly beaten, it was enough for fans to sit up and take notice of the progress that Beckham’s outfit is making in a short period.
The bookies seem equally impressed as they have already slashed the football betting odds to reflect Miami’s enhanced opportunities at MLS Cup glory. They are currently 16/1 to win the competition outright. To put it into perspective, Nashville SC is 50/1 and the franchise made it to the Eastern Conference semi-finals last year.
In Higuain, Miami has a world-class striker that could still cut it in Europe. That's how good he is. Sure, he joined in 2020, so the other franchises know about him and his skillset. However, the Argentinian’s season was disjointed because he was added to the roster after Inter had already lost seven out of eleven matches.
He only managed a single goal, and Inter Miami still qualified for the play-in, so imagine what the squad will achieve if he hits his stride. The signs are that he will do just that because Higuain has already notched two goals in the same number of games. With his talent and experience, it’s not illogical to believe the former Juventus and Chelsea man will take the league by storm.
Inter will only benefit from this because his goals could take them deep into the playoffs. One thing’s for certain - 12/1 for the top goalscorer crown is very long for a player of Higuain’s quality.
It’s hard for MLS teams to instill a philosophy when soccer takes a backseat to the NFL, MLB, and the NBA. There just isn’t the desire to create an institution as it’s challenging to compete with the Knicks or New York Giants. As a result, clubs don’t receive the cash injection they require.
At Inter Miami, it’s different as the man in charge of all things football-related is a relentless winner with a passion for success. The early signs of the club’s DNA are already on show after Beckham made the hard already lost seven out of elevendecisions to replace the former manager and sporting director, Diego Alonso and Paul McDonough, with Phil Neville and Chris Henderson.
Neville, in particular, is an astute signing because he was his Manchester United teammate for more than a decade and understands what the owner expects on and off the pitch. With people like Higuain and Neville orchestrating matters on the field, and Beckham building a philosophy, it wouldn’t be surprising if Inter Miami took on their challengers and won this season.