MLS President Mark Abbott gives update on Minnesota United expansion

Major League Soccer announced that it will engage in discussions with the city of St. Paul, Minnesota after the league-imposed deadline was reached on Wednesday for expansion side Minnesota United FC to finalize a stadium plan.

MLS President and Deputy Commissioner Mark Abbott shared the news during an interview on "The Ride with Reusse" radio show on ESPN 1500 Twin Cities.

"As of today, we don't yet have a stadium plan [in Minnesota] and that's something we need in order to move forward," Abbott told ESPN 1500.

Minnesota United was announced as an MLS expansion team back in late March, when the July 1 deadline for a stadium plan was also established.

The club's ownership group, led by Bill McGuire, has since worked with Minneapolis city officials on a privately funded stadium plan, but the absence of legislative approval for accompanying tax incentives and other infrastructure support has prevented a final agreement from being reached.

With movement on the stadium front stalling in Minneapolis, St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman has publicly expressed an interest in potentially becoming the new home for Minnesota United. Abbott said that MLS executives will visit with St. Paul officials in July to explore the opportunity.
"[McGuire] gave us a specific update about the interest that Mayor Coleman has expressed," Abbott said. "We just thought it was appropriate given all the work that has been put in the market to date, that we come and learn more about that opportunity before we made a final decision."