20231206 messi
Image Credit: AFP

Hong Kong: Fans who snapped up tickets to watch Lionel Messi in Hong Kong, only for him to sit out the friendly, will get a 50 per cent refund - as long as they don't launch legal action.

A sell-out crowd paid from 880 Hong Kong dollars ($110) to see the eight-time Ballon d'Or winner in action on February 4 in an Inter Miami tour match against a Hong Kong select XI.

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But the 36-year-old Argentine remained glued to the bench with an injury, drawing boos from the crowd.

Organiser Tatler Asia on Monday offered a 50 per cent refund for "those who purchased tickets through official channels for the match".

Those who want some of their money back will have to agree to terms and conditions that include not pursuing "proceedings before any court of law, tribunal (or) regulatory authority".

Under fire for its handling of the fiasco, Tatler withdrew its application for a HK$16 million government grant to fund the event the day after the match.

Inter Miami's next stop after Hong Kong was Japan - where Messi played 30 minutes of a friendly match against Vissel Kobe in Tokyo.