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Messi back active, not in starting lineup for Inter Miami vs. Colorado


FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) — Lionel Messi is officially active for Inter Miami's MLS match against the Colorado Rapids on Saturday night, though the eight-time Ballon d'Or winner is not in the starting lineup.

The team announced Friday that Messi, who has been dealing with a hamstring injury, would be available. He had missed each of Inter Miami's last four contests, plus two games with Argentina during that span.

All of Messi's former standout Barcelona teammates — Luis Suarez, Sergio Busquets and Jordi Alba — were available Saturday as well, though like Messi, they were all listed as reserves. It's a clear sign that Inter Miami is trying to be cautious with workloads for its four oldest players, all of them age 35 or older.

Inter Miami is in a stretch where it will play five matches in a span of 15 days. The team had a 1-1 draw with New York City FC on March 30, lost the first leg of a CONCACAF Champions Cup matchup 2-1 to Monterrey at home on Wednesday and hosted the Rapids on Saturday. It then goes to Mexico for the second leg of the CONCACAF series this coming Wednesday before finishing the stretch at Kansas City on April 13.


AP MLS: https://apnews.com/hub/major-league-soccer