Inter Miami coach Diego Alonso made a wardrobe change the past few games, opting for a track suit one game and shirtsleeves the next, a departure from the elegant suits and dress shoes he wore the rest of the season. Click Here to watch live stream FREE
Alonso’s new look is in sync with the team’s get-down-to-business attitude as it heads into Saturday’s home game against the Houston Dynamo (5 p.m., UniMas).
Miami is hoping for a late-season playoff push following a 2-1 road win against the New York Red Bulls Wednesday that was punctuated with a game-winning free kick from Argentine forward Gonzalo Higuain. The team is in 12th place with 14 points, two spots shy of a playoff spot with seven games remaining.
“It’s crunch time,” said midfielder Wil Trapp, who will be playing his 200th MLS game.
“The season is quickly approaching its regular season end. Any points we pick home, home or away, are so important. For this group on Wednesday to win the game as we did with five starters out was pretty impressive, to be honest.
“We did a good job of coming together. You add in the quality of Gonzalo’s goal, and that helps immensely, but you’re seeing a group that’s started to congeal a little more from a team spirit perspective.”
And the team is about to get another impact player.
Federico Higuain, Gonzalo’s older brother, has requested a trade to Miami from D.C. United and the clubs are working on a deal, a league spokesperson confirmed Friday night.
The elder Higuain, 35, is a forward and attacking midfielder. He played 157 games in Argentina’s first division, including spells at River Plate and Independiente from 2003 to 2012. He went on to play in Turkey and Mexico before joining the Columbus Crew in 2012 for a club record $650,000. He won the MLS Newcomer of the Year Award in his debut season.
He made nearly 200 appearances and scored over 50 goals for the club, and this season joined D.C. United. Unlike his brother Gonzalo, known for his clinical finishing, Federico is more of a playmaker. His strengths are his vision, passing, ball control, and play off the ball. He will be reunited with longtime Crew teammate Trapp.
Sports Pass is your ticket to Miami sports
Get in-depth, sideline coverage of Miami area sports – only $1 a month