Report: MLS expansion down to Minneapolis, Sacramento


Las Vegas' loss could be Minneapolis' gain.

Major League Soccer commissioner Don Garber informed the city of Las Vegas on Thursday that it is no longer in the running for an expansion team before 2018. Pro Soccer Talk says Minneapolis and Sacramento are now the leading contenders for a team.

MLS plans to expand to 24 teams by 2020. The current league is made up of 20 teams; Atlanta and Los Angeles FC will join as expansion teams in 2017, and according to ESPN, a club in Miami has tentatively been promised to soccer star David Beckham, who is leading the build.

That leaves one vacancy for Minneapolis or Sacramento.

Minnesota has two groups pursuing a franchise. Minnesota United FC, one of the top teams in the North American Soccer League, hopes to build its own stadium. The Minnesota Vikings are the United's competition; they can offer the new 65,000-seat multipurpose stadium as a home to an MLS team.

The $1 billion venue is 40 percent constructed, according to a team spokesman.

Both groups have major financial backing. Vikings owner Zygi Wilf is leading one charge while United owner Bill McGuire is being backed by the Pohlad family, owners of the Twins, and Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor, the Star Tribune reports.

MLS has also heard proposals from groups in St. Louis and San Antonio, although they are not being considered as seriously as Minneapolis and Sacramento.

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