Photo: David Beckham
Former soccer star David Beckham has selected Miami as the city for his planned Major League Soccer franchise, the BBC reported Wednesday.
The 38-year-old Englishman will pay a discounted price of $25 million to launch the expansion franchise, the British media said.
The option of being an owner of an MLS team was apparently included in Beckham’s contract when he signed with the Los Angeles Galaxy in 2007.
Twelve potential investor groups from around the world have reportedly contacted the former Manchester United and Real Madrid midfielder, who is seeking to raise the hundreds of millions of dollars needed to finance the project, which includes construction of a soccer-only stadium.
The MLS, however, still must give Beckham the green light to start a new franchise in that South Florida city.
Beckham, who retired in May 2013 after a brief stint with Paris Saint-Germain, played in the U.S. soccer league for five seasons until November 2012.
At the time of his departure, he said his “ambition” was to “be part of the ownership structure in the future.”
An MLS spokesman cited by British media said discussions were ongoing with Beckham, but that the former English captain would be the one to go public with a final agreement if one is reached.
The MLS currently has 19 teams, although a 20th club - New York City FC, which is being funded by Manchester City and the New York Yankees baseball club - is set to join the league in 2015.
The league is looking to expand to 24 teams by 2020.