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Lionel Messi, Inter Miami expected to draw record-setting crowd in New England on Saturday

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Lionel Messi and Inter Miami are expected to play in front of another record-setting crowd on the road in Saturday’s game against the New England Revolution at Gillette Stadium.

More than 64,000 fans are expected in attendance on Saturday to see the GOAT – Messi, not Tom Brady – play on the home field of the NFL’s New England Patriots. The game begins at 7:30 p.m. ET, and will be streamed via MLS Season Pass on Apple TV.

The game is expected to set a team attendance record for the Revolution, and potentially be one of the top three most attended soccer matches in Gillette Stadium’s 23-year history – a sight Patriots, Revolution and stadium owner Robert Kraft would love to see.

“We are nearly sold out,” a club spokesman told USA TODAY Sports on Tuesday, adding some ticket sales have been held back for potential season ticket or ticket package customers.

WATCH: Messi and Inter Miami at New England on Apple TV

TICKETS: See Messi and Inter Miami take on the New England Revolution at Gillete Stadium in Foxboro, Mass.

SHOP: Get the latest Messi and Inter Miami gear from the MLS Store

Will Messi play in New England?

Messi is expected to play in New England, despite concerns about him playing on the artificial turf surface at Gillette Stadium.

The club spokesman confirmed the playing surface is the same the Patriots use for NFL games, and like the turf Messi played 90 minutes on in the MLS season finale last season at Charlotte.

“Same high-quality surface you’ll find at stadiums like Portland, Seattle, Charlotte – where Messi did play 90 minutes on the same type of surface,” the spokesman said.

Messi, the 2022 World Cup champion with Argentina, has become the MLS scoring leader this season with seven goals, after scoring two in Inter Miami’s 3-1 victory over Nashville last Saturday.

Messi has scored nine goals in nine games he’s played, including the Concacaf Champions Cup, which both Inter Miami and New England were eliminated from earlier this month. It appears he’s returned to form after a right hamstring injury sidelined him from March 13-April 6.

Here are the Top 3 most attended soccer matches at Gillette Stadium

Sept. 12, 2007: Brazil beat Mexico 3-1 in an international friendly with 67,584 fans in attendance to set the record.  

June 4, 2011: Spain beat the United States 4-0 during an international friendly in front of 64,121 fans.

Oct. 20, 2022: The 2002 MLS Cup final between New England and L.A. Galaxy drew 61,316 fans. The Galaxy won 1-0 when Carlos Ruiz ended the game with a golden goal in the 113th minute.

Will Messi, Inter Miami set new attendance record for New England game?

At least 30,000 tickets were sold to season-ticket members or package ticket holders before individual tickets went on sale Feb. 13, the spokesman said.

The club said, in a March 27 press release, it has sold 60,000 tickets with 5,000 remaining.

“I’m not sure if we’ll get above that, but maybe right under it,” the club spokesman said of the Inter Miami game attendance reaching the stadium record.

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