CHESTER, Pa. - Lionel Messi is coming to town with Inter Miami on Tuesday night for a semifinal of the Leagues Cup and the Philadelphia Union have Paoli native Chris Donovan to thank.
Donovan, a former Former Tredyffrin-Easttown/FC Europa and FC Montco player, scored in the 111th minute off an assist from Kai Wagner to lead the Union to a 2-1 win over Mexican team Queretaro FC.
Donovan's winner prevented what would've been a third straight penalty shootout for the Union in the knockout competition, which started last month with 47 teams from MLS and Liga MX.
After beating Queretaro 5-1 in a group stage game on July 26, the Union struck first on Friday night with a goal from Jesus Bueno in the 15th minute. Queretaro's Angel Sepulveda equalized for the visitors in the 65th minute.
Inter Miami advanced to the Leagues Cup semifinal with a 4-0 win at home over Charlotte FC on Friday night. Messi scored his 8th goal of the competition in the match. The 2022 World Cup winner debuted for Inter Miami in the competition on July 21 and has added three assists to his goal tally in five games.
Tuesday's semifinal is scheduled for 7 p.m. and will be broadcast live on MLS Season Pass. Nashville SC is hosting Monterrey in the other semifinal. The two finalists and the winner of the third place game will clinch a berth into the 2024 Concacaf Champions Cup.
Photo credit: Philadelphia Union