His name is Rio and he dances on the sand. David Beckham has confirmed he will buy an MLS franchise and locate the team in Miami. The former LA Galaxy star also revealed players are already lined up to join America’s newest club, setting tongues wagging that Rio Ferdinand could be first on the list.
Accompanied by Major League Soccer Commissioner Don Garber, Beckham announced that he would create a club in Miami and said he wanted to create a global team that would personal to himself. The ex-England captain also revealed that players are already interested in joining his venture prompting rumours that Rio Ferdinand will hook up with his ex-Man United team-mate.
Ferdinand’s relationship with under-fire Red Devils boss David Moyes is believed to be under strain with the defender’s contract expired this summer.
“We will bring great players in,” he said. “The fortunate thing about my career is players are already interested in coming to Miami.”
Last week the 38-year-old’s investor group Beckham Miami United met with Mayor Carlos Gimenez’s office to discuss up to 30 possible sites for the construction of a purpose-built arena.
Part of his contract with the LA Galaxy gave the former England captain an opportunity to buy an expansion franchise at a heavily discounted rate — believed to be $25 million.
Florida previously had an MLS club in Miami Fusion until they were disbanded in 2001. Beckham alluded to the former club in his announcement: “I know there was a team here 10 years ago that unfortunately folded, but I know that Miami is ready for football again.”
Florida neighbour Orlando City became the newest league side when announced by the officials last November.
The search for a stadium site will continue with some reports suggesting the proposed arena could cater for 75,000 spectators with add-on hotels and shops as part of the project.
The Sun Life Stadium, home of the Miami Dolphins, is believed to be in the pipeline as a temporary venue for the team, though no date was given for when they would be introduced to the league