NEW YORK – MLS Commissioner Don Garber is convinced: Tuesday's announcement of New York City FC as the 20th expansion team in MLS will be "transformational."
English Premier League giants Manchester City partnered with Major League Baseball powers the New York Yankees to purchase the rights to a second team in New York City for a "record fee" which "reflects the increasing value of our league," according to Garber.
But the value of the newest club in MLS goes well beyond the expansion fee, the exact figure of which was not disclosed.
"[New York] is a big market and represents over 19 million people and there is an opportunity to really capture all the excitement and passion for the sport by bringing these two great partners together," Garber said. "It's one that I think will be transformational for Major League Soccer and soccer in America."
The MLS Commissioner believes that the long-term impact of the newest powerhouse partnership can prove to be as powerful as the arrival of David Beckham in MLS.
"Outside the United States, the fact we have Premier League champions, FA Cup champions aligning with 27-time world champions [in baseball], it's going to give our league exposure and credibility around the world in many ways that we were able to do with the signing of David Beckham. It's a really big global opportunity.
"This expands our global footprint and the diversity of thought in our boardroom," Garber continued. "To be able to have the expertise and the global power of the Yankees combined with the football knowledge and great success and credibility of a Premier League champion will provide the league with an opportunity to reach our goal to be one of the top leagues in the world."