Beckham-Miami deal: 'We're not there yet'

Will MLS pull the trigger and approve David Beckham's long-delayed bid to bring the league's 24th team to Miami? It could happen as soon as Wednesday at the MLS board of governors meeting in Chicago. But MLS commissioner Don Garber cautioned that work on the project still needs to be done.

The three pieces to the Miami Beckham United puzzle have been: (1) assembling an ownership group; (2) securing a stadium site; (3) and finalizing business plans.

The problem has been securing a stadium site. That seems to have been resolvedwith the approval, by a 9-4 vote of Miami-Dade County commissioners, of a no-bid deal to purchase the third parcel of land needed to build a 25,000-seat stadium in Miami's Overtown neighborhood.

Here's are some key points of Garber's ExtraTime Live conversation:

“We are at the finish line after nine years of work to be sure, if we go to Miami, we get it right," Garber said on Tuesday in an ExtraTime Live chat, "David had an option, but that option couldn’t be exercised without having him satisfy all the things that all team owners need to satisfy -- the right capital structure with his partners, the right stadium plan, the right marketing and business plans, and we’re at that point where I think we are getting ready to make the decisions internally to go forward.”

Despite everything, the Beckham project is not a done deal.

"It’s a vote -- votes can go any which way," said Garber. "We’re not there yet. I think we’ve got work to do. And perhaps, coming out of that board meeting is not an approval, but maybe a handful of things that need to happen to get that approval, at which point, perhaps weeks later, we’re able to go down to Miami and talk about what our plans might be.”

On a cautionary note, the New York Times on Monday published at article in which it examined Miami, which has been a fickle soccer market, and specifically the challenges of having to "crowbar a stadium into the land in Overtown."

It suggested it would be naive to build a stadium without adjacent parking for residents for whom driving is a way of life.

“I want Beckham to be in the league, and he’s the guy who can make Miami work,” one MLS owner told the Times. “But when we sit in the room, that’s what we talk about.”

2 comments about "Beckham-Miami deal: 'We're not there yet'".
  1. Goal Goal, August 2, 2017 at 10:26 a.m.

    Miami will be a great venue if. Teams like the international championship play or Mexico plays somebody. It will not be a godd venue for MLS.

  2. John Soares, August 2, 2017 at 6:39 p.m.

    One way or another, it's time to "do it" or move on.

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