Departure of NFL’s Rams “gives a little more momentum” to St. Louis, says MLS commissioner

BALTIMORE -- The announcement of the impending move by the NFL's Rams from St. Louis to Los Angeles made news in the sports world and even MLS is following those developments closely.

MLS Commissioner Don Garber was asked whether the city of St. Louis, which is now home to two major professional sports teams — Major League Baseball’s St. Louis Cardinals and the National Hockey League's St. Louis Blues — is now on the MLS expansion radar as the league looks to expand to 28 teams.

“There are many cities in the US and in Canada — though we're more focused on the United States — that can support an MLS team and have owners who want to be involved and cities that want to be engaged with those owners on a stadium,” Garber said. "And St. Louis is one of those cities. 

"We obviously heard the news [that the St. Louis Rams are moving to Los Angeles] like everybody else did, and we're tracking that news very closely,” Garber continued. “I have yet to speak to the governor or the mayor [of St. Louis], but we have been in touch with the group that was leading the effort for MLS and I think it kind of gives a little more momentum to that city than perhaps before the Rams left."

As far as other potential expansion cities are concerned, Garber said there was “no update” on Miami or Sacramento, but that there were “lots of discussion, even recently” with the ownership group in Sacramento and that Miami’s situation was “very real time." 

“They have finalized an opportunity to purchase land,” Garber said about David Beckham’s proposed ownership group in Miami. “We like the site, we've been down to that site and we think it would be a good one for an MLS team. But there's still work to do. Unfortunately there's no more news today than there was over the last couple of days. No update."

When it comes to expansion teams that have already been unveiled, the MLS Commissioner allowed for the possibility of Minnesota United FC joining the league as early as 2017.

“It's a possibility,” he said. "Nothing's been determined yet, but it's a possibility and a decision will have to be made on that soon."

Topics: