Watch CBS News

The Lionel Messi "effect" on and off the pitch

"Messi Mania" both on and off the pitch
"Messi Mania" both on and off the pitch 03:27

MIAMI - Soccer great Lionel Messi's transfer to Inter Miami CF has been nothing short of transformational. In just two short months, his impact took the team from one of the worst in the standings table to the league title. And his winning ways are making a difference well off the field too.

In Doral, there's a tap room where furry visitors are welcome but most customers are there for the GOAT.

"They are asking - where can I find the GOAT," said Juan Pipkin, co-owner of Prison Pals Brewery.

It's one of many businesses capitalizing on the arrival of Messi, considered by many the "Greatest of All Time" in the world of soccer.

The brewery's special edition beer can has the number 10 and the colors of both Argentina's flag - blue and white - and the Inter Miami team - pink.

"We try to do the best beer for the best soccer player in the world," Pipkin said.

It's not just about Messi's impact in South Florida. His impact is being felt nationwide.

According to published reports, Messi sold more jerseys within 24 hours of his announcement than any other player changing teams, edging out Tom Brady and Lebron James.

Nico Cantor is an analyst for the CBS Golazo Network - a new soccer streaming channel.

"The biggest cheer out of all the 22 players from the starting lineup. It doesn't matter if he's an away player, it's always gonna be Messi," he said.

That's true well beyond the United States. According to Cantor, Messi fans around the world are now sporting the Miami logo.

"There are Messi jerseys being sold in every corner of the world, and it's pink, and it has an Inter Miami Logo, which is absolutely wild," said Cantor.

It's something that Pipkin has also seen happen with his beer, with customers asking for it as far away as China.

It's what some are calling the 'Messi' effect with victories on the field and off.

Another measure of success for Messi is social media. Inter Miami's Instagram account went from about a million followers to more than 15 million followers since his arrival.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.