Monday, 11 December, 2017

FC Cincinnati named one of four finalists for MLS expansion

San Antonio FC midfielder Billy Forbes is fouled by Jonathan Levin of Tulsa Roughnecks FC during second-half USL playoffs action at Toyota Field on Oct. 21 2017. The foul led to a successful direct free kick. San Antonio FC won 2-1 Detroit named top 4 finalist for MLS expansion team
Charlie Simmons | 01 December, 2017, 06:48

Major League Soccer has formally named Sacramento one of four finalists for expansion, and a contingent representing the city's bid will make a final pitch to a committee of league owners next week in NY. "The result is a compelling plan to present Ford Field as a state-of-the-art soccer stadium; a plan which reflects not just a shared vision to bring MLS to Detroit, but a desire to do so in a way that will both preserve Ford Field as one of the city's great assets and benefit the broader community". That committee will then recommend two winning bids to the league's board of governors and an announcement of the successful bids is expected before the end of the year.

Representatives from Cincinnati, Detroit, Sacramento and Nashville's teams will make formal presentations to MLS Commissioner Don Garber and the League's Expansion Committee in NY on December 6. Two more expansion teams will be picked later. According to Bexar County Judge Nelson Wolff, who played a lead role in this plan, MLS officials had even encouraged the county and city to purchase the $18 million Toyota Field stadium in 2015, on the assumption that San Antonio would soon have a national soccer franchise.

St. Louis is still among the cities that made bids for an MLS expansion team that could someday get a team, however.

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The MLS now has 22 teams, with Los Angeles being added in 2018 and a potential new franchise in Miami.

Raleigh made its initial pitch to the MLS over the summer.

Though Wednesday may been seen as a setback in Phoenix Rising FC's journey to becoming a major league team, a tweet from Phoenix Rising's Vice President of Marketing and Sales Sam Doerr makes the franchise seem hopeful. I'm personally looking forward to January.

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