NEW YORK – Major League Soccer Commissioner Don Garber says Minneapolis, Atlanta, Sacramento, San Diego and Texas sites are under consideration as expansion cites.
MLS will increase to 21 teams when New York City and Orlando, Fla., start play in 2015. A Miami team has been awarded to former Los Angeles Galaxy star David Beckham, but a date has not been set for it to take the field.
“We continue to work and make progress in Atlanta and we are bullish on that market,” Garber said. “We’ll continue to work hopefully with the Falcons and Arthur Blank, seeing if we can get something finalized in Atlanta.”
As for Minnesota, he said “we have been working hard with a potential ownership group in Minneapolis and that opportunity is one that we’re excited about as we believe we need more teams in the Midwest.”
Said Lester Bagley, the Vikings’ vice president of public affairs and stadium development: “Since breaking ground on our new stadium, the Vikings have advanced our conversations with Commissioner Garber and MLS staff. We have also been working with [stadium architect] HKS to design a mechanism that will reduce the house to more closely align with potential MLS crowds. We think Minneapolis-St. Paul is a strong market for soccer, and our goal is to bring an MLS franchise here.”
The league said last July it plans to reach 24 teams by 2020.
STAFF, NEWS SERVICES