When Lionel Messi almost joined LA Galaxy

Argentina v France: Final - FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022
Argentina v France: Final - FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 / BSR Agency/GettyImages

The summer of 2022 brought tantalizing whispers of a potential reunion between Lionel Messi and former teammate Luis Suarez at LA Galaxy, a move that could have reshaped the MLS landscape. Reports from AS hinted at Galaxy's interest in Suarez, with hopes of securing Messi's signature alongside the Uruguayan striker.

However, Greg Vanney, the Galaxy's coach at the time, hesitated to greenlight Suarez's arrival. Vanney's reluctance stemmed from concerns that Suarez's style didn't seamlessly fit the team's system. With Javier Hernandez and Dejan Jovelic already in the squad, possessing similar attributes to Suarez, the move didn't align strategically for the Galaxy.

During this period, an insider close to AS revealed a tantalizing detail: Suarez's agent hinted at a plan where the Uruguayan would arrive first, paving the way for his 'friend' to follow suit. While the identity of this 'friend' remained undisclosed, all indications pointed to none other than Lionel Messi.

The prospect of Messi gracing the MLS with his presence alongside Suarez stirred excitement among fans and pundits alike. The potential partnership of the two football icons, once a formidable force at Barcelona, promised a dazzling display of skill and camaraderie on American soil.

Alas, the stars didn't align for this blockbuster move. Vanney's strategic reservations and the complexities of squad dynamics led to the plan's downfall, leaving the dream of seeing Messi in Galaxy's colors unrealized.

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The near-miss of Messi's potential arrival at LA Galaxy serves as a poignant 'what-if' moment in MLS history. While the Argentine maestro never graced the fields of Dignity Health Sports Park, the mere contemplation of his potential arrival remains a tantalizing chapter that could have rewritten the league's narrative.