Skip to main content
Updated:
Original:

Mpls group in 'advanced discussions' for Major League Soccer team

Author:

Minnesota is a big step closer to getting an expansion Major League Soccer franchise.

The league confirmed on Monday that it was in "advanced discussions" with representatives from Minnesota United FC.

"We are in advanced discussions with Bill McGuire and his partners in Minnesota to bring a Major League Soccer expansion club to the Twin Cities and are particularly excited about their plans for a new soccer-specific stadium that will serve as the club's home," said MLS Commissioner Don Garber in a statement.

The Minnesota United bid is one of several vying for an MLS team. Groups from Sacramento, Las Vegas, San Antonio and St. Louis have all made pitches for future expansion. The league said it will announce which city will get a team in the next 30-45 days.

"MLS leadership is well aware that the passionate soccer fans in Minnesota, combined with a world-class, soccer-specific stadium make the Twin Cities and our state a perfect home for the next MLS expansion team," said Minnesota United in a statement.

The United bid also had some in-state competition from Vikings' owners Zygi and Mark Wilf, who had put forth a plan to have an MLS team play its home games inside the new Vikings stadium, which will be completed in 2016. But MLS officials have favored outdoor soccer-specific stadiums.

McGuire owns the Minnesota United, which is a minor league soccer franchise. He proposes building a $150 million outdoor soccer stadium on the current site of the downtown Minneapolis farmer's market near Target Field.

While McGuire's stadium plans are in the very early stages, the league's public endorsement Monday indicates it's comfortable with his ability to follow through with it, the Star Tribune notes.

'No public money' for stadium, lawmakers say

According to MPR News, McGuire's plan for the stadium would include some public money. But top lawmakers from both parties, including Democratic Senate Majority Leader Tom Bakk, warned backers not to count on the state to provide that assistance.

"The league ran into this problem in Miami," Bakk told MPR. "They gave a franchise out two years ago, and they don't have a field to play on. So I don't know if they're going to make that mistake twice or if this group of owners is going to figure out how to finance a $150 million soccer stadium or not."

Late Monday afternoon, Gov. Dayton issued a statement echoing that sentiment.

In a statement released following Monday's news, the Vikings said their proposal would have allowed an MLS team to play in a world-class stadium, that's already paid for.

"We offered MLS an ideal situation – a stadium that is certain and will be completed in 2016, a plan that was funded by the public and private sectors to host MLS, and an option that will not require additional government approvals. The new multi-purpose stadium also would have accommodated the length of the MLS season and the growth of the sport in this market.

At the same time, we commend MLS Commissioner Don Garber and Deputy Commissioner Mark Abbott for their continued success in building the MLS brand, and, most importantly, we are pleased to see they believe in the Minneapolis-St. Paul market."

MLS, which has recently expanded to 20 clubs with the additions of teams in Orlando, Florida and New York City, has previously said it hopes to grow to 24 clubs by 2020.

Next Up

u.s. attorney

Minnesotan sentenced after assaulting man with baseball bat

Marshall Wayne Boshey was sentenced to 30 months in prison followed by two years of supervised release.

Target store

Target's gift card discount is back, but for this weekend only

The fine print: for Target Circle members only (but membership is free).

Screen Shot 2020-06-15 at 7.11.05 AM

Minneapolis teen arrested in St. Cloud after fleeing police in stolen vehicle

The vehicle was stolen in a car-jacking in Minneapolis Thursday.

snow, blowing snow

Winter storm warnings issued with heavy snow set to slam MN

Parts of northern Minnesota could see more than a foot of snow, but there won't be much in the Twin Cities.

D'Angelo Russell

With KAT out, Timberwolves can't upset Nets

D'Angelo Russell stepped up but couldn't overcome Brooklyn's firepower.

Everson Griffen Vikings dot com

Everson Griffen confirms he has bipolar disorder

"I’ve been running from it a long time. I’m not ashamed of it anymore.”

Angela Renee Jones, St. Cloud murder suspect

St. Cloud suspect now charged in two local murder cases

Both murders happened within a day of each other in June.

st anthony 3 crop

Twin Cities police ask for help finding missing 16-year-old

Police say all her family and friends have been contacted, and none of them know where she is.

mpd suspect 12.3.21 - 1 - CROP

MPD releases photos of shooting suspect, asks for public's help

The man is wanted in connection with a fatal shooting that happened Wednesday evening.

redmons popcorn colbert 2

Support grows for Redmon's Popcorn after shop's sudden closure

The county also commented on the situation, saying it hopes to help owner Zack Redmon.

Related