Football

Major League Soccer in talks for Las Vegas franchise

Las Vegas could play host to the 24th MLS franchise (©GettyImages)
Las Vegas could play host to the 24th MLS franchise (©GettyImages).

Major League Soccer could be coming to Las Vegas, according to the Las Vegas Sun.

Findlay Sports and Entertainment and The Cordish Companies have announced plans for a stadium to be built downtown at Symphony Park. This news follows discussions between the groups and the MLS about the possibility of an expansion team.

There are currently 19 teams in the division, with plans to expand to 24 as MLS continues concerted efforts to grow across North America.

With four new franchises already planned, Cordish and Finlay would be competing against Austin, Minneapolis, San Antonio and San Diego for the final spot.

On the matter, Findlay commented: "It will be a race to see who can put the best package together. A lot of people are vying for the last spot."

They will have been encouraged though by a statement from MLS Deputy Commissioner and President Mark Abbott.

He said: "We recently met with Justin Findlay and Blake Cordish at the MLS League office in New York and were very impressed with their vision to pursue building a new soccer stadium and acquiring an MLS expansion club for Las Vegas.

"We look forward to continuing discussions as they work to further develop their plans with Mayor Goodman and the City of Las Vegas."

The stadium would have a capacity of 24,000, and would be designed specifically for professional football.

It would cost in excess of $300 million to build, creating over 1,000 construction and permanent jobs. The funding would come from a combination of public money and investment from the two groups.

Though it's too early to look at exact figures, Findlay was confident that the deal would stack up well against those of competitors.

"We are not settled on the details. I can tell you, it's a better [deal] for the public than most cities'."

The newspaper also revealed that Mayor Carolyn Goodman has spent a long time working on the possibility of bringing another sport to the area, in the form of the National Hockey League or the National Basketball Association.

In the MLS, franchises have already been confirmed in New York City, Orlando and Atlanta, with David Beckham's Miami to follow.

New York City FC - owned by Manchester City and Major League Baseball's New York Yankees - will join the league in 2015, along with Orlando City - who were originally founded in 2008 as the Austin Aztex and currently play in the USL Professional Division.

Atlanta's franchise will become part of the MLS two years later. They are operated by Arthur Bank, owner of National Football League's Atlanta Falcons.

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Football
MLS

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