Major League Soccer announced Wednesday morning that retired Los Angeles Galaxy star David Beckham would exercise a contract clause and purchase the rights to a future Miami club for $25 million.
Miami was already home to an MLS team in the early stages of the league, but the Fusion folded due to revenue concerns in 2001. Beckham believes it will be different this time, though.
“I wanted to create a team that we could start from scratch,” he said. “I know this city is ready for football — soccer — this time around.”
Beckham says he’d like to bring global stars to Miami in the same way the city’s basketball team has done. “We have a list,” he said. “We want to bring some of the best players in football to Miami to play on this team. I’ve seen what happens to teams when you bring great players in. I’m talking about the Heat.”
The MLS, ranked as the seventh-best soccer league in the world in a recent survey currently consists of 19 teams, which average around 18,600 fans per game. Expansion clubs New York City F.C. and Orlando City S.C. are scheduled to join in 2015. The Miami team’s start date won’t be finalized until they finish deciding where to build a new stadium; discussions with the city are underway.