Whitecaps slash concession prices for game vs. Inter Miami minus Messi & Co.

With Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez and Sergio Busquets out for Inter Miami’s road match against Vancouver on Saturday, Whitecaps CEO Axel Schuster announced the club is slashing concession prices for the match.

In an official club statement on Thursday, Schuster said the club will be offering all stadium concessions at 50 percent off. Also, fans under 18 will be given one free kids meal combo.

“We know that there will also be a lot of disappointed fans,” Schuster said. “We remain committed to making this a special experience for everyone. It is still going to be an incredible atmosphere and celebration of soccer for our city. We have amazing fans, we have a good team, and Saturday’s match is a very important home game for us.”

In the statement, the Whitecaps said they are expecting a bigger crowd than the record 32,465 fans who attended the club’s 50th-anniversary match on May 4.

It will be Messi’s seventh absence of the year due to a leg injury or rest. The Whitecaps play on turf at BC Place, but the former Barcelona superstar has said he is willing to play on it, unlike many other players.

Another possible reason Messi and his former Barcelona teammates are sitting is the distance from Miami to Vancouver. A nonstop flight is nearly 2,900 miles, and Inter Miami has to turn around and play Atlanta United at home on Wednesday.

–Field Level Media