Could Inter Miami do anything this year that they failed to achieve last? Making the playoffs is the first and foremost objective for every Major League Soccer team before the season begins. Looking at it objectively, it isn’t very challenging. After all, more than half of the league makes it to the next phase.

And then there are the ancillary objectives, such as off-field projects, prizes, and transfers. On the other hand, once the new year begins and every club begins its preseason training, the playoffs become the first objective.

That is where Inter Miami was unsuccessful last season. They failed to make the playoffs last year after almost making it in 2022. The Herons were out in the cold with only two games remaining.

There was just no room in the screenplay for Lionel Messi to participate in the celebrations. Nobody could help Inter Miami escape the hole they had dug for themselves; not even the Argentine veteran could. Looking on as Messi attempted to save Miami in the MLS Playoffs would have been an incredible spectacle.

How has Miami fared so far this season?

Last season did not live up to expectations, but who knows—2024 may be their breakout year! So, to get into the MLS Cup playoffs, how many more points must Inter Miami accumulate?

What is the minimum number of points required to be eligible for the MLS Cup Playoffs? Will they be able to coast for the remainder of the season to give Lionel Messi and the rest of the team a break before Copa America?

Even before Messi came in, the Herons had already retreated to the bottom of the standings. But they have since shown that they can at least attempt to compete with the greatest in Major League Soccer.

With 11 games under their belts, Tata Martino’s side has a commanding lead in the Eastern Conference. Six victories, three ties, and two losses give them 21 points.

Not far behind them comes a caravan of rivals, with Cincinnati, in second place, trailing by just three points. Next in line are the New York Red Bulls, Toronto, Columbus Crew, New York City FC, and Philadelphia Union, all of whom are separated by only one point.

But the Miami team has also had its share of challenges this year. For four MLS games, they were without their star player, Lionel Messi, and they came out on top only once.

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How many more points does Miami need to reach the Playoffs?

For the rest of the season, they will be crossing their fingers that the 36-year-old stays healthy and gets plenty of rest. Especially considering that the regular season is far from over with 23 games yet to play.

With 23 games to go, they’ll probably need a point per game to advance. The data from the previous season suggests as much. In 2023, Charlotte FC and the New York Red Bulls narrowly clinched the two Wild Card spots in the Eastern Conference with just 43 points each.

The wild-card round currently includes the eighth and ninth-place teams from each conference, according to a change in the tournament structure last season. Following that, the victor will go on to Round One to take on the top-ranked team.

At the same time, Nashville finished the previous season with 49 points, good enough for seventh place and the last Playoff slot. Based on that reasoning, for Miami to finish ninth and earn the Wild Card or seventh and guarantee themselves a berth in the Playoffs, they will need an additional 20-30 points.