MLS Veteran Landon Donovan Envisions a Future Where Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo Grace the MLS Turf

Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo: Future MLS Players?

The Growth of the MLS

Over the past 15 years, two football legends, Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi, have dominated the world of soccer. However, with the growth of Major League Soccer (MLS), renowned players like Gareth Bale, Giorgio Chiellini, Xherdan Shaqiri, Federico Bernardeschi, and Lorenzo Insigne have recently joined the league. Landon Donovan, a former Everton striker and MLS icon, believes that Messi and Ronaldo may soon follow in the footsteps of players like Zlatan Ibrahimovic, David Beckham, Thierry Henry, Steven Gerrard, Wayne Rooney, and Frank Lampard, who all played in the MLS before retirement.

Donovan acknowledges the impact Beckham had on the league and its growth, noting that the trend continues with current stars like Carlos Vela, Chicharito, and Gareth Bale. He confidently expresses his belief that one day, Messi and Cristiano will also make the move to the MLS. This bold prediction has sparked immense interest and speculation among soccer enthusiasts and fans worldwide.

Is It Likely?

While Donovan’s prediction is exciting, bookmakers don’t seem to share the same belief—at least not in the near future. Current odds and betting markets do not favor Ronaldo’s potential departure for the MLS this summer. Despite his complicated relationship with Manchester United, sources close to him suggest that he is likely to stay in Europe. Ronaldo has voiced his interest in living in the United States and playing in the MLS in the past. However, for now, it seems that his focus remains on European football.

Similarly, Messi’s situation doesn’t indicate an immediate move to the MLS either. Although he owns a luxurious apartment in Miami, and there were rumors about his potential involvement with Beckham’s Inter Miami as a player and part-owner, his entourage has dismissed these speculations. Nevertheless, Messi himself has openly expressed his desire to experience MLS football before retiring. In 2021, the odds of Messi joining any MLS team as a free agent after leaving Barcelona stood at +1600.

If circumstances make a return to Barcelona impossible in 2023, Messi may seriously consider the MLS as a fitting continuation of his illustrious career.

The Potential Impact

The arrival of Messi and Ronaldo in the MLS would undoubtedly have a transformative effect on the league. Their sheer presence would attract an enormous fan base and generate immense excitement among soccer enthusiasts. The MLS has been gradually improving its reputation and standings worldwide, and the addition of these two exceptional talents would catapult its growth even further.

The league has seen a surge in viewership and attendance numbers in recent years, and the arrival of Messi and Ronaldo would undoubtedly propel this growth to new heights. Their remarkable skills, experience, and star power would not only benefit the MLS but also elevate the overall level of play, increasing competition and attracting high-profile sponsors and endorsements.

Moreover, the impact would extend beyond the field. The MLS has proven to be a breeding ground for young talents, and having Messi and Ronaldo as mentors and role models would inspire and motivate aspiring players in the United States. Their presence could potentially contribute to the development of young American talents and help elevate the country’s soccer prowess on the global stage.


In conclusion, Landon Donovan’s prediction that Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo will play in the MLS holds immense intrigue and excitement. While bookmakers may not consider it likely in the immediate future, the potential arrival of these two football icons would undoubtedly change the landscape of the league. Their presence would attract a massive following, boost viewership, attendance, and overall competition levels. Additionally, their impact would extend beyond the field, inspiring young American talents and further elevating the reputation of soccer in the United States.

FAQs about Messi and Ronaldo’s Potential MLS Move

1. Why are Messi and Ronaldo considering the MLS?

Both Messi and Ronaldo have expressed their interest in experiencing soccer in the United States before retirement. The MLS offers them a new challenge and an opportunity to leave a lasting legacy in American soccer.

2. Which teams are likely to sign Messi and Ronaldo?

At this point, it is difficult to say which teams are most likely to sign Messi and Ronaldo. The MLS landscape is ever-changing, and different teams may emerge as strong contenders in the future.

3. How would Messi and Ronaldo’s arrival impact the MLS?

Their arrival would have a transformative effect on the league, attracting a massive fan base, increasing competition, and elevating the overall level of play. It would also bring significant attention from sponsors, endorsements, and media coverage.

4. Can the MLS financially support Messi and Ronaldo’s wages?

While the financial aspect is crucial, the MLS has been steadily growing and attracting investment. With strategic planning and sponsorship deals, the league could potentially secure the necessary funds to support players of Messi and Ronaldo’s caliber.

5. How would their presence impact American soccer development?

Messi and Ronaldo’s presence would inspire and motivate young American talents, raising the bar for soccer development in the country. Their influence as mentors and role models could greatly contribute to the growth and success of future generations of American soccer players.

Doug I. Jones

Doug I. Jones

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