Inter Miami vs Houston Dynamo: The Intersection of Soccer and Basketball Champions
The Final Showdown: Inter Miami vs Houston Dynamo
On September 27th, Lionel Messi’s Inter Miami will face off against Houston Dynamo in the final of the US Open Cup. The Dynamo is a franchise steeped in history, having been founded on December 16, 2005. Despite their relative youth, they’ve already made a considerable impact in the Major League Soccer (MLS), finishing fourth in their debut season in 2005/06 and winning two championships in 2006 and 2007. Adding to their trophy cabinet, the team also won the US Open Cup in 2018.
A New Shareholder: NBA Star James Harden
On July 18, the club welcomed a new shareholder, NBA star James Harden. Harden, who was then a key player for Houston’s basketball team, the Rockets, expressed his excitement at joining the ownership group of the Houston Dynamo and Houston Dash (the women’s team). “Houston is my home now, and I saw this as a way to invest in my city and expand my business interests at the same time,” he stated.
The 34-year-old basketball player, who was named the NBA’s Most Valuable Player in 2018 and helped the United States win gold medals at the 2012 London Olympics and the 2014 FIBA World Cup, joined the board led by president and majority shareholder, Ted Segal, and vice president, Lyle Ayes. Harden’s investment in the Dynamo complements his diverse portfolio, which includes the sports drink BodyArmor, the beauty products brand Art of Sport (AOS), the sock company Stance, and his latest wine venture.
Looking for the Dynamo’s “Messi”
With Messi’s arrival making waves in the MLS, Harden, who embodies a competitive spirit, admitted that he is looking for his own “Messi” for the Dynamo. He hopes to find a player who can accompany the team’s Mexican star, Héctor Herrera. Expressing his optimism, Harden stated, “We all know how incredible Messi is. He’s in Miami and this suits the environment he wants. We need someone like that to come with us and we’ll find them.”
He concluded his thoughts on the matter by saying, “The MLS is growing with Messi. It’s a big thing because in the United States we’ve never had recognition for soccer players. We’ll see how young players develop and it will be good for American soccer culture.”
Soccer and Basketball: A Confluence of Interests
Harden’s investment in MLS showcases the growing interest in soccer among NBA players. This trend is also evident in the actions of Harden’s NBA colleague Giannis Antetokounmpo, who is investing in Nashville SC, another team defeated by Inter Miami in the Leagues Cup final.
Implications for the US Open Cup Final
The intersection of Harden’s interest in soccer and Messi’s arrival in MLS has drawn significant attention ahead of the US Open Cup final. However, Messi’s participation remains uncertain due to recent injury woes. Despite the uncertainty, the match promises to be an exciting showdown between two teams with significant backing and ambitious visions for the future of soccer in the United States.
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