David Beckham was finally awarded his MLS expansion franchise yesterday, after years of waiting out ever-changing stadium plans so he could cash in his $25 million option to buy a team that he was awarded during his playing days. (Mere mortals have to cough up $150 million apiece for an MLS team these days.) So let’s hear it, what are the details?
There was no word Monday on the team’s official name nor the colors it will play in. Similarly, there was no announcement about when the Miami franchise will officially join the league.
Okay, then! There was also no official announcement of where the new unnamed team will play, though Overtown remains Beckham’s preferred stadium site, as reported yesterday.
In short, yesterday’s big announcement comes down to an acknowledgment by MLS that yes, we gave Beckham the right to buy his own team at a steeply discounted price in exchange for taking his then-fading talents to the L.A. Galaxy, and he’s going to use it because he’s no dummy, and we can’t stop him. So there will be an MLS team in Miami, somewhere, someday!
And as for that Overtown stadium site, Miami-Dade mayor Carlos Gimenez made clear yesterday that there are no plans to add additional parking facilities there, and that fans should either walk a few blocks from the train or bus or take an Uber or Lyft. That’s not necessarily a terrible idea — MLS attendance numbers are wobbly enough that for most games existing parking may well end up being enough — but we’ll just have to see it in action to know how it’ll work. Any decade now, really.