David Beckham could hold the key to getting Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo to move to the MLS with Inter Miami, according to Minnesota United’s manager. Adrian Heath believes Miami is one of two realistic destinations for the global superstars, should they move to the MLS.
Beckham has a good relationship with Ronaldo, who moved to Juventus in search of a new challenge.
The 35-year-old shows no signs of dropping his level of performance but may move to the United States before he calls time on his illustrious career.
Messi, 32, may still have a few years left at the top of world football, but he is approaching retirement age and may be tempted to move closer to Argentina during his twilight years.
Heath is confident the pair will consider moving to the US but believes only Beckham can lure them across the pond.
“I keep hearing there will be a blockbuster signing at some stage – and Ronaldo and Messi are the names I hear most,” he said.
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“That would be incredible for football in the USA and if anyone has the global profile to make that dream a reality then it has to be David Beckham.
“It may not happen just yet, but I can see Ronaldo following in the footsteps of Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Wayne Rooney, Steven Gerrard and Frank Lampard playing in the MLS.
“For Ronaldo and Messi, the two obvious destinations if they came to the MLS would be Los Angeles and Miami.
“And, with his links to both players and the plan Beckham and his backers have in place, I can really only see them going to Miami.”
Heath also predicted that the MLS will become more than a retirement home for players who are past their prime.
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“I believe the MLS has the potential to become one of the top leagues in the world,” he added.
“In the past it’s been a place for top stars to wind down their careers, but I think that will change.
“The arrival of Beckham and Miami will help accelerate that switch in mentality.”
The new MLS season is set to get underway on Saturday, with Inter Miami playing in the Eastern Conference.
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The first league game for the new side will be against LAFC, who are managed by former Swansea City boss Bob Bradley.
Reigning champions Seattle Sounders get their season underway against Chicago Fire as they look to become only the fourth team to retain the title since the tournament’s inception.
DC United will kick off the new season when they face Colorado, but they will be without former talisman Wayne Rooney, who moved to Derby in January.
The MLS will also be without last season’s top scorer Zlatan Ibrahimovic after the Swede returned to AC Milan.
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