Major League Soccer (MLS) announced that David Beckham has exercised his option for an MLS expansion team, and he has selected Miami as the city for the new club.
Beckham’s ownership group will now work with MLS and local officials to finalize a deal for a world-class soccer stadium.
“We appreciate all that David has done as a player, an ambassador and as a global icon to help grow Major League Soccer,” MLS Commissioner Don Garber said.
“Miami is a vibrant, diverse community that thrives on the same type of energy that fuels the international appeal of soccer,” said Beckham.
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Beckham and his representatives plan to build a stadium for the new team, and they continue to have conversations with Mayor Gimenez and the Miami-Dade County Commission regarding a stadium for the community of Miami.
Because of the importance of the stadium, an agreement for a new stadium must be finalized in order for MLS to come to Miami. Beckham has pledged that he will not seek County or City funds for the construction of the stadium.
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Beckham’s ownership group includes David’s business partner and long-time friend Simon Fuller. The remainder of the ownership group will be finalized over the next several months.
Major League Soccer, which begins its 19th season on March 8, currently features 19 clubs, with expansion teams in New York City and Orlando set to begin play in 2015.
The League is scheduled to add three more expansion teams by 2020, including the Beckham team. Miami would become home to one of those three expansion teams pending finalization of a new stadium.