David Beckham Officially Awarded Miami-Based MLS Franchise

Matt JonesFeatured ColumnistJanuary 29, 2018

Former  England and Manchester United star, David Beckham(C) poses for photos after holding a press conference at the Perez Art Museum Miami, in Miami, Florida on February 5, 2014. Beckham said Wednesday that he will buy a US team to play Major League Soccer and bring it to Miami, confirming the worst-kept secret in world football. At left is Major League Soccer Commissioner, Don Garber(L) and Miami-Dade County Mayor, Carlos A. Gimenez is at right. AFP PHOTO / Alexia FODERE        (Photo credit should read Alexia Fodere/AFP/Getty Images)
AFP/Getty Images

David Beckham confirmed the launch of his Miami-based Major League Soccer franchise on Monday.

The former Manchester United, Real Madrid and England player revealed the news at a press conference accompanied by MLS Commissioner Don Garber at the Adrienne Arsht Center in Miami.

Major League Soccer @MLS

Welcome to Major League Soccer, @futbolmiamimls! https://t.co/SPDCfBJbfc

ESPN reported the announcement did not reveal the team's name or when it will officially start play in the league, but Beckham said he and his group hope to start play in 2020.

ESPN's report also noted Beckham's club will "focus on building up an academy program while working with the community to develop a name and team colors."

Beckham spent six years in Major League Soccer as a Los Angeles Galaxy player and had an option to purchase an expansion franchise as part of his contract with the club. It was confirmed by the league in 2014 that Beckham had exercised it.

Setting up the team in Miami has been a lengthy process as challenges have surfaced in regards to finding a location for a new stadium.

As reported by John Richardson and Steve Brenner of the Daily Mirror, the project appeared in danger of collapse late last year when a property owner based near land purchased by Beckham to build a new stadium filed a lawsuit against Miami-Dade County.

However, significant progress appears to have been made by Beckham and his Miami venture, and plenty of locals will be delighted that a top-flight soccer side is coming to the region.

The Miami outfit is set to become the 25th MLS side. Los Angeles FC will make their debut in the competition in 2018, while a Nashville franchise will be integrated in 2019 or 2020.