Report: Press conference scheduled as David Beckham's Miami expansion plans move forward
The latest news on David Beckham’s Major League Soccer expansion franchise will be revealed during a press conference in Miami next Wednesday, according to Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez.
The mayor confirmed the date of the event to The Miami Herald on Wednesday after completing more than three hours of meetings with Beckham’s ownership group, Miami Beckham United. Beckham is expected to be in attendance for the event, but Major League Soccer has not confirmed that league Commissioner Don Garber will attend.
There could also be a scheduled event next Tuesday, according to the Herald’s report.
Gimenez met with Beckham’s group this week to discuss up to 30 potential sites for a soccer-specific stadium in Miami, and the two sides set a timeline to complete any negotiations by the end of the summer, according to the mayor.
The favorite site for Beckham’s group remains county-owned land at the PortMiami site in Biscayne Bay. Gimenez told the Herald that another other site – a county-owned parcel near Marlins Park in Little Havana and the Miami River – is under consideration, along with three other sites with public and private owners.
Beckham is the spearhead of a movement to bring MLS back to South Florida for the first time since the Fusion were contracted in 2001. Originally given a discount rate to buy an expansion franchise as part of his contract with the league as an LA Galaxy player in 2007, Beckham has zeroed in on the Sunshine State as his destination with a powerful ownership group in tow.
Garber said last month that he was optimistic about an expansion franchise in Miami, insisting that if Beckham and his group – including longtime business partner Simon Fuller and Bolivian billionaire Marcelo Claure – can come up with proper financial support and stadium plan, that “we could have a formula for success."
Beckham is expected to be in New York this weekend ahead of the Super Bowl on Sunday. He will appear on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon on Friday night, attend the game Sunday at MetLife Stadium in New Jersey and fly to Miami on Monday.