Major League Soccer (MLS) is expected to make an announcement “in the coming months” about a new franchise based in Miami, Florida. It’s still unknown when MLS Miami will ultimately join the league, but the move will mark a victory for David Beckham, the former soccer star who has been working on bringing a team to Miami since 2014.
“We look forward to working with David, Todd Boehly [majority owner] and their partners to finalize their expansion plan,” an MLS spokesman told BBC Sport last week. “David and his partners have committed a significant amount of time and resources to put everything in place to bring Miami the elite-level soccer team and stadium it richly deserves.”
A clause in Beckham’s contract with the Los Angeles Galaxy in 2007 gave him the option of one day creating a new MLS team for $25 million. He revealed plans to bring an MLS team to Miami in 2014 shortly after exercising his option, telling reporters at the time that he wanted to “create a team that is personal to me.” Following years of back and forth with the city, Beckham finally secured the land he needs to build a 25,000 seat stadium earlier this year, paving the way for him to headline one of the two franchises expected to join MLS next month.
MLS commissioner Don Garber said in August that he was confident they’d be able to announce MLS Miami “by the end of the summer” once a couple more elements were finalized. Beckham’s desire to bring an MLS team to Miami prompted Garber to compare him to Michael Jordan and Wayne Gretzky, calling him their “transformational player.”