Blaise Matuidi Officially Signs for Inter Miami

Inter Miami CF have gone out and signed a World Cup winner in Blaise Matuidi.

The midfielder will depart Juventus for free, a year before his contract was set to expire. Juventus had recently won the Serie A, but were knocked out in the UEFA Champions League Quarter Final last week. Following the loss, eyes were on Juventus to make major changes at the club. It started with the firing of Maurizio Sarri, and the hiring of Italian legend Andrea Pirlo as manager. Matuidi is thought to be the first of a number of players on the roster set to leave Turin, as they look to restructure the squad.

The Announcement

Bringing in Matuidi was talked about and declared “official” days before Inter Miami officially announced it. When the words “Here we go” are in any tweet from Fabrizio Romano, that’s when you know a deal is done. Romano, a world renowned football journalist and reporter, broke the news suddenly on the morning of August 10th.

Questions were asked about how Inter Miami would bring him in under the MLS Salary Budget. For a player of Matuidi’s quality, it’d be expected that Paul McDonough would have to waste a Designated Player (DP) slot on him. However, McDonough has pulled off the unthinkable here by signing Matuidi as a TAM player. TAM, or Targeted Allocation Money, is defined by MLS as “funds strategically provided by the league to teams to add or retain players that will make an immediate impact on the field.” This leaves the club with one more DP slot available . In a simple sense, a DP is a player who’s salary does not take effect and can exceed the MLS Salary Budget. Therefore, Inter still have a massive opportunity to sign another big name player.

On the Morning of August 13th, Inter Miami posted this tweet to tease Miami fans, “Who controls the field?”:

It was quickly followed with the actual announcement of the clubs new Number 8.

Blaise Matuidi: The Player

At 33 years old, Matuidi contributed heavily to the Scudetto winners in 2019-2020. Of the 38 games this year, Matuidi started in 23 and was subbed on in 12. An important piece to such a top team, Matuidi’s move to MLS may come as a surprise as it doesn’t seem his career was dwindling just yet.

Blaise Matuidi has been on more title winning sides than someone can count on both hands. He’s won the Ligue 1 title five times with PSG, the Serie A three times with Juventus, 12 cup titles in France, and another cup in Italy. Matuidi’s greatest accomplishment however, is his World Cup win with France in 2018.

Normally a center defensive midfielder, and a solid one at that, Matuidi has also proven he can play as a left midfielder, or left back too. In every game Matuidi featured in at the 2018 World Cup for France, he was asked to play on the left side. As a player, Matuidi is a more defensive minded midfielder who excels at winning the ball. Inter Miami, an MLS Expansion Side who’s struggled so far to retain possession and protect its backline, may have found a match made in heaven.

Overall, this is a huge signing by the club. David Beckham has brought in his former teammate to help solidify his midfield and team as a whole. It should be noted that Matuidi likely won’t play in Miami’s first couple of 2020 regular season matches and it is not known exactly when he will be available.

With that said, Miami fans should still be excited to bring in a proven winner like Blaise Matuidi.

Inter Miami are set to host Orlando City at Lockhart Stadium on August 22nd as the 2020 MLS Regular Season returns.

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