June 15th, 2024

Whitecaps offer fans free tickets after Messi misses match in Vancouver

By Gemma Karstens-Smith, The Canadian Press on May 25, 2024.

Inter Miami's Lionel Messi plays the ball during the warm up at Stade Saputo ahead of an MLS soccer game against CF Montreal in Montreal, Saturday, May 11, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes

VANCOUVER – The Vancouver Whitecaps are looking to ease the disappointment of soccer fans with free tickets for a future game.

Many people took to social media to express their anger and frustration after learning earlier this week that soccer legend Lionel Messi won’t play for Inter Miami when the club visits Vancouver on Saturday night.

Miami coach head coach Gerardo (Tata) Martino told reporters Friday that the club opted to keep the 26-year-old World Cup-winning superstar – as well as Uruguayan striker Luis Suarez and Spanish midfielder Sergio Busquets – in Florida because of a busy upcoming schedule that will see the team play at home on Wednesday and Saturday of next week.

The Whitecaps sent an email to ticket holders on Saturday offering a free ticket to another regular-season game this year, with details to come via email next week.

The club is also offering 50 per cent off food and beverages at the B.C. Place during the game, and a free kids meal for anyone 18 and younger.

More than 50,000 people are expected to attend the match.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 25, 2024.

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