Miami mayor tells Beckham on stadium site: “The slip is off the table”

Finally up to speed with David Beckham’s plans for an MLS stadium in a public park by a filled-in boat slip that would be turned into new parkland? Good, now forget all that, because Miami city officials just stuck a giant fork in it:

Mayor Tomás Regalado and City Manager Daniel Alfonso told Beckham’s group thanks but no thanks when lead negotiator John Alschuler offered Miami $2 million a year in rent of sorts to make a deal.

That was “generous,” according to Alfonso, but neither he nor the mayor walked into the meeting with Alschuler intending to bargain. “Given the uniqueness of this site, we agreed that this was just not the right place,” Alfonso said.

“The slip is off the table,” Regalado said.

Regalado, you may recall, was a prime opponent of the Miami Marlins stadium deal, even attempting to take back $100 million in garage subsidies once it became clear that the team’s owners were just pocketing the profits. (He didn’t get very far, but he attempted.) Beckham has had more support from Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez, but with the city controlling the land in this case, Regalado has effective veto power.

That’s two proposed stadium sites rejected in a little over a month for Beckham and Alschuler, who said yesterday that the team — which doesn’t actually exist yet, mind you, and won’t until it has a stadium deal in place — is going to “pause” and “consider all alternatives and look forward to constructive engagement.” I’m pretty sure that’s PR-speak for “WTF do we do now?”, so we may be in for a short pause in Miami MLS news.

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11 comments on “Miami mayor tells Beckham on stadium site: “The slip is off the table”

  1. They didn’t even the voters the chance to give Beckham a victory. Beckham needs to get the Heat owner in his pocket or just pick another city.

  2. If there is anything I know about Beckham, it’s that when the pressure is on, he comes through.

  3. So while they were jerking Beckham around, the same guys gave the Heat and Dolphins all the subsidies they want this year.

  4. He can buy CD Chivas(since the MLS owns it) and look for a stadium site in LA. Of course that would erode MLS’ expansion into the SE U.S., not to mention the big bucks the MLS would get if they could find an investor to keep Chivas in the greater LA market.

  5. This is what Beckham’s group gets for trying to be fair and honest. They get jerked around by corrupt politicians and their pockets full of special interest money.

    We often get rightfully angry at all these rich sports owners and their hardball methods for getting free money. But the system seems to be set up so that acting in a less corrupt manner leads to spectacular failure.

  6. Steven: Honest question, do you think the voters of Miami (and Miami-Dade County) would have voted to approve the stadium project, had it gone up for a vote? Because I don’t.

  7. Based on poll demos I don’t think he would have won, but the crooks and special interests didn’t give the people a chance to choose. A couple months of Beckham day to day campaigning might have made for an upset for the portmiami billionaires.

  8. Btw, funny how mayor tomas took it off the table the day after a poll showed voters evenly split on the issue. It doesn’t matter what you think, The boat guys saw a split without Beckham even campaigning. They thought they could lose and decided to take away the peoples choice to choose. COWARDS and Crooks !

  9. My guess is that the only land Miami will offer to lease to David will be the land next to Marlin’s Space Ship stadium, which does not meet the “downtown” requirement that Don Garber has established.

    “We cannot go to Miami unless we have not just a viable, but a very, very strong downtown location for a city that will be provided with a Major League Soccer franchise that can privately finance a stadium,” Garber told reporters at Stade Saputo, “to do it with one of the soccer world’s most important and significant icons and to make a commitment to make it one of the better teams, or most important teams, in North America.” – from

  10. Just read where carnival cruise customers are upset that they are the only cruise lines not showing World Cup games. I said it from the beginning. Heat owner Arison will do everything to stop soccer in Miami. Funny how Marlins are only bad guys in city when the Miami heat are also sucking the city dry.