David Beckham Begins MLS Franchise Search with Trip to Home of Miami Dolphins

Ian Rodgers@irodgers66World Football Staff WriterJune 2, 2013

CARSON, CA - DECEMBER 01:  David Beckham #23 of Los Angeles Galaxy looks on while taking on the Houston Dynamo in the 2012 MLS Cup at The Home Depot Center on December 1, 2012 in Carson, California.  (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
Harry How/Getty Images

David Beckham has started his quest for a Major League Soccer franchise with a visit to Sun Life Stadium, the home of the NFL's Miami Dolphins.

The former Manchester United, Real Madrid, L.A. Galaxy and Paris Saint-Germain midfielder, who retired from the game last month, is keen to develop a new club in the United States after his time in the league.

Beckham declared the prospect of building his own franchise "exciting," as BBC Sport reported.

"I think Miami fans are very passionate about their sports and very passionate about winning," he said. "It's definitely exciting."

The 38-year-old had a line inserted into his contract with the Galaxy which would allow him to buy an MLS franchise once his career came to an end, as BBC Sport noted in March of 2009 when the clause was revealed.

Beckham joined the Galaxy in January of 2007 from Real Madrid and immediately voiced his intention to help raise the profile of the game in the United States, as ESPN reported:

With me, it's about football. I'm coming there to make a difference. I'm coming there to play football.

I'm not saying me coming over to the States is going to make soccer the biggest sport in America. That would be difficult to achieve. Baseball, basketball, American football, they've been around.

But I wouldn't be doing this if I didn't think I could make a difference.

True to his word, Beckham helped to build the MLS brand with his five-and-a-half-year stay at the Galaxy, as Sports Illustrated writer Grant Wahl highlighted.

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Florida does not currently have an MLS franchise following the axing of the Tampa Bay Mutiny and Miami Fusion after a strategic review of the league's operations in 2002, as USSoccer.com reported at the time.

Beckham visited the 76,000-seat Sun Life Stadium as part of his trip to Miami and also saw a smaller ground at Florida International University. He also met representatives of the Miami-Dade Sports Commission, according to The Guardian.

The report also states that there are no firm agreements in place for Beckham to buy an expansion franchise and that the former England international has other cities to consider.

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