Nine-man Inter Miami beat Philadelphia without Messi, Suárez


No Messi, no problem! Leonardo Afonso gives Inter Miami late lead

Leonardo Afonso scores in the 94th minute to put 9-man Inter Miami ahead against the Philadelphia Union.

Despite being down to nine men, Inter Miami CF picked up a surprising 2-1 victory over the Philadelphia Union behind a stoppage-time goal from Leo Afonso.

Afonso's match-winner, in the fourth minute of second-half stoppage time, came with Lionel Messi and Luis Suárez missing from the Miami lineup ahead of Copa América. Miami also saw David Ruiz and Tomas Aviles each sent off in the second half as both were shown their second yellow cards.

The loss by the Union (4-5-8, 20 points) sent them to a seventh straight winless result at home (0-5-2). Philadelphia has not won a match on home soil since March 30.

Missing leading scorers Daniel Gazdag and Julian Carranza, the Union opened the scoring in the third minute. Mikael Uhre got on the end of a ball from Jakob Glesnes, beat his defender, and fired it past Drake Callender for his sixth goal of the season as the Union took a 1-0 lead.

Sergio Busquets and Jordi Alba celebrate Miami's win over Philadelphia.
Caean Couto-USA TODAY Sports

The Union sought to double their lead in the 13th minute as Quinn Sullivan went in on goal but shot it wide.

Without Messi and Suárez, Miami initially struggled to find a flow offensively, not being credited with a shot on goal -- or a single shot, for that matter -- until the 39th minute. But it broke through in the 47th minute as Julian Gressel ripped a right-footed effort past Oliver Semmle for his first goal of the season, tying the match at 1-1.

After seeing its ranks reduced to nine men -- first as Ruiz was shown his second yellow card in the 69th minute before Aviles picked up his own second caution in the 88th minute -- Miami (11-3-5, 38 pts.) found an improbable winner through Afonso, snapping a brief two-match winless run in the process.

Miami also improved to 6-1-2 away from home with the victory.