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Long-delayed Miami MLS expansion franchise to be announced on Monday, reports say

MLS Commissioner Don Garber, David Beckham and Miami Mayor Carlos Gimenez attend a press conference in February 2014 to announce their plans to launch a new MLS franchise. After years of delays, the team will be formally announced on Monday, reports say. (Photo by Larry Marano/Getty Images) ORG XMIT: 467350547

David Beckham’s Miami MLS expansion team will be formally announced on Monday with plans to begin play in 2020.

According to multiple sources, the Beckham team’s name and logo will also be revealed Monday. After four years of delays, the Miami Major League Soccer team will become the league’s second in the state, following Orlando City SC.

The Miami Herald reports the planned news conference comes after Beckham and his latest business partners finalized franchise details with the league. 

“Though Beckham and partners, including new recruits Jorge and Jose Mas, have already secured stadium land in Overtown and the league has granted tentative approval of the plan, a formal deal hadn’t been cut as 2017 came to a close. Now Beckham’s group and the league appear to have finalized the details needed to announce MLS approval of a Miami franchise, and dignitaries are readying for a large public event on Monday to welcome the team,” the Herald reported.

A spokesman for Beckham did not immediately respond to a request for comment from the Herald or the Associated Press. 

Beckham, the former Manchester United, Real Madrid and LA Galaxy star, announced his plans to bring an MLS team to Miami four years ago. The process has been arduous since, most recently because of a lawsuit that was filed over Beckham’s $9 million purchase of a plot of land from Miami-Dade County to be used for the team’s planned 25,000-seat stadium.

A contract he signed in 2007 with the LA Galaxy gave Beckham the right to start an expansion franchise for $25 million, and in 2013 he selected Miami as the place where he would want to put a team.

A spokesman for Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez, who helped Beckham’s group reach a deal for three acres of county land in Overtown for the team’s planned stadium, told the Herald that he is planning to attend Monday’s event.

It will be South Florida’s second chance to have an MLS franchise. The Miami Fusion played from 1998 through 2001 in Fort Lauderdale, about a half-hour’s drive north of Miami, and folded because of poor attendance.

Florida will also become just the third state with multiple MLS teams: California has three (L.A. Galaxy, LAFC and San Jose Earthquakes), and Texas has two (Dallas FC and Houston Dynamo). The New York metro area has two teams, but the New York Red Bulls play in Harrison, N.J., and NYCFC plays in the The Bronx, N.Y.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.




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