Beckham closer to Miami MLS franchise

ESPN staff
October 1, 2013
Beckham closing in on MLS Franchise

David Beckham is moving closer to an agreement to take charge of a new Major League Soccer franchise in Miami, the Daily Mail has reported.

Beckham has been considering taking ownership of a new Florida club for several months, and has an option to take up ownership of a club in the US league for a $25 million fee.

There is not currently an MLS franchise in Florida, nor any of the closest dozen or so states in the region. The closest clubs to Miami are Houston Dynamo to the west and DC United to the north. The last time the state had any MLS franchises was in 2001, the year both the Fort Lauderdale-based Miami Fusion and the Tampa Bay Mutiny folded.

The Mail says Beckham, who retired at the end of last season after a stint with Paris Saint-Germain, is now in the final round of negotiations with potential co-investors. Miami Dolphins owner Steve Ross, American Idol creator Simon Fuller and Brightstar Corp founder Marcelo Claure are all possible backers for the project.

Earlier this month, a source with MLS told ESPN FC that Miami was still lagging behind Orlando and Atlanta in its bid to acquire an expansion franchise on the grounds that it lacked a suitable stadium. The Mail, though, reports that Florida International University's stadium is the team's most likely home.

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