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Soccer / Sports

Beckham-Miami soccer deal one step closer

As expected, David Beckham has exercised his option to buy a Major League Soccer franchise, and plans to bring his team to Miami, contingent on a viable privately funded stadium plan, according to sources familiar with negotiations.

Beckham, his investment group, and MLS commissioner Don Garber will be in Miami on Tuesday and Wednesday, drumming up support from community leaders and youth soccer clubs.

There is an invitation-only reception planned Tuesday night at the John S. and James L. Knight Concert Hall downtown, and a press conference Wednesday morning at the new waterfront Perez Art Museum.

Wednesday afternoon, youth soccer players have been invited to a meet and greet with Beckham at Kendall Soccer Park.

He is in negotiations with Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez and the commission to lease county-owned land for a 25,000-seat stadium. His preferred site is a waterfront lot on the southwest corner of PortMiami.

MLS has not yet awarded Miami a team because a stadium plan is still pending, but all indications are a deal will be reached sometime in the next few months, at which point a Miami team could become a reality.

The team would likely begin play in the 2017 season, possibly 2016.

(c)2014 The Miami Herald

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Distributed by MCT Information Services


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