David Beckham is a step closer to bringing Major League Soccer (MLS) to Miami after the Miami-Dade Board of County Commissioners voted to approve the sale of a three-acre parcel of land to Miami Beckham United.
The $9 million property, a truck depot and warehouse which located in Miami’s Overtown neighbourhood off the Miami River, gives Beckham’s group a total of nine acres for the purpose of building a privately-financed, 25,000-seat downtown soccer stadium in its pursuit of an MLS expansion team.
Miami Beckham United said in a statement:
Now is the time for MLS to move forward in helping us deliver the soccer club that Miami has been waiting for. Miami is the eighth largest metro area in the US, the country’s number one soccer market, and a critical gateway to Latin America and Europe. MLS will only reach its full potential once it fields a team here.
Meanwhile, the MLS said:
We are pleased the Miami-Dade Board of County Commissioners today ratified Mayor Gimenez’s recommendation to sell David Beckham and his partners additional land for the proposed soccer stadium site.
We appreciate the support of the Mayor and the County Commissioners to assist in efforts to try to bring a Major League Soccer expansion team to Miami.
Should Beckham’s group succeed in securing an MLS team, it would still need zoning approvals before construction can begin on the site.
Beckham played his last MLS match in 2012 and formally announced Miami’s expansion bid in early 2014.
As part of his first MLS contract, he received the option to acquire an MLS expansion team at a reduced expansion fee.
Miami has been without an MLS team since the league folded the Fusion in 2001 after four seasons.
The city is also currently home to Miami FC, which began play in the second-tier NASL last year, playing home games at Florida International University.
Beckham’s group hopes to open the new stadium by 2020.
Image courtesy of Miami Beckham United