NEW LENOX – MessiMania has taken over the soccer community in the U.S. since the signing of superstar Lionel Messi by Inter Miami, and Providence Catholic High School is right in the middle of it.
Messi will play his second match in Major League Soccer on Tuesday, taking on Atlanta United. Atlanta United’s goalkeeper is Providence graduate Brad Guzan.
Providence Catholic, 1800 W. Lincoln Highway in New Lenox, is hosting a watch party for the match, starting at 6 p.m. Pizza and refreshments will be available. Only standing-room spots are available. Some well-known names will be in attendance, and two tickets to see Messi and Inter Miami play the Fire on Oct. 4 in Chicago will be raffled off. Registration is required for the free watch party at https://tinyurl.com/6rfpk2kc.
At halftime, there will be a panel talking about Guzan’s life from high school to the world stage, featuring Guzan’s parents, his wife via Zoom from the game and Ryan Meegan, co-founder of DUDE Wipes and Guzan’s good friend from high school.
The 19-year veteran Guzan, who led the Celtics to the the state finals, won a club national championship, played at South Carolina, nine years in the Premier League and recently made his 250th MLS start. He also was on two U.S. Men’s National Team World Cup squads (2010, 2014) and will face Messi for the first time since 2016.
The boys soccer program at Providence Catholic has been revamped recently, with the hiring of head coach Mike Taylor and assistant coach John Kovatch. Between the two, they have won more than 1,000 games and 15 state trophies at the high school level.