FORT LAUDERDALE, FLA. (WSVN) - A Sunday soaker did not stop thousands of soccer fans from welcoming one of the greatest players of all time in South Florida: Lionel Messi.

Video showed fans dancing in the parking lot of DRV PNK Stadium in Fort Lauderdale while holding a life-size cutout of the 36-year-old superstar, Sunday afternoon.

“He’s the one and only, the greatest,” said a fan.

“The Argentinian people are the happy people, you know? Even Messi is here, so the party is complete,” said another fan.

Fans were celebrating as they waited to get inside DRV PNK Stadium in Fort Lauderdale.

“It’s Messi, so it’s worth it,” said fan Randy Wilson. “It don’t matter the amount of money. As long as you see Messi, that’s all that matters.”

Fans were not disappointed.

Video showed Messi, wearing a white T-shirt as he held his son’s hand and waved to fans moments after he arrived at the stadium.

But before the joyous moment happened, the skies opened up, and the stadium announced a weather delay.

At least 20,000 tickets were sold for the big welcome party. Some attendees even flew in to be part of Messi madness.

“I’m from New York, and we came all the way over here,” said fan Christian Hernandez, “so that says a lot. I can only imagine how it is for you Floridians.”

Fans won’t have to wait long to see Messi on the soccer field. His first game with Inter Miami will take place Friday night at DRV PNK Stadium against Mexican team Cruz Azul.

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