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2024 Sports Business Award Winners List: Arthur Blank, Lionel Messi, Inter Miami Win Big

Written by Patrick Echatah

During the 17th annual Sports Business Awards on Wednesday night in New York City, Individuals and clubs from Major League Soccer won a number of prizes.


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Lifetime Achievement Award: Atlanta United owner Arthur M. Blank
Deal of the Year: Inter Miami CF sign Lionel Messi
Sports Team of the Year: Inter Miami CF

Since Atlanta joined the MLS in 2017, Blank has led the team to extraordinary success, which includes winning the 2018 MLS Cup and bringing record-breaking attendance to Mercedes-Benz Stadium.

In addition to co-founding The Home Depot, Blank is the owner of the NFL’s Atlanta Falcons, which he has turned into a consistent challenger. When Messi decided to continue his incredible career at Inter Miami last summer, both MLS and North American football underwent a radical change.

Messi excelled on the pitch, taking home the Leagues Cup 2023 championship and securing a spot in the Concacaf Champions Cup for 2024. The FIFA World Cup champion of 2022 also won his ninth Ballon d’Or, setting a new world record.

The impact of the Argentine superstar off the field is significant, as evidenced by the large attendance at Inter Miami’s games and the commercial opportunities that arise.

Since Messi’s arrival in July, Inter Miami has experienced rapid growth alongside fellow FC Barcelona legends Jordi Alba and Sergio Busquets. This winter, they brought in Luis Suárez, bolstering the star power in South Florida with young players like Federico Redondo, Diego Gómez, and Benjamin Cremaschi.

Read Also – Gareth Southgate: A Victim Of His Own Success

Meanwhile…

Brazilian winger Célio Pompeu has signed a new deal with St. Louis CITY SC, the team announced on Friday

With a club option for 2027, the 24-year-old Brazilian is now signed through the 2026 MLS season.

“We are proud to see Célio’s growth through our pipeline”, sporting director Lutz Pfannenstiel said in a press release. “He has grown as a professional, both on and off the field, and to reap the rewards with a new contract was something he worked really hard for. Celio continues to elevate his game each and every day and we hope that he doesn’t stop raising the bar.”

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