Guinness International Champions Cup comes to South Florida
David Beckham reportedly interested in bringing MLS to Miami
MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. – The final games of the Guinness International Champions Cup begin Tuesday at Sun Life Stadium.
Juventus and Inter Milan play for 7th place at 6:30 p.m., followed by Everton and Valencia for 5th place.
At 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Los Angeles Galaxy and AC Milan play for 3rd. Real Madrid and Chelsea -- two of the biggest names in world soccer -- play in the championship game at 9 p.m.
Photos: AC Milan hold practice
Despite not having a MLS team, South Florida continues to host matches. Last month, Sun Life Stadium hosted group matches for the Gold Cup, and Miami Dolphins owner Stephen Ross said the stadium could host more high-profile games if it received public money to renovate the stadium. However, a bill that would've helped the stadium receive public funding died in the Florida Legislature.
With Major League Soccer Commissioner Don Garber announcing the league will expand to 24 teams by 2020 (New York City FC begin play in 2015), many peg the league's nonexistent presence in the Southeast as one reason why South Florida may get another MLS team. The Miami Fusion F.C. played its last season in Fort Lauderdale in 2001.
"If we don't have to build another stadium, it would be fantastic," said Miami Mayor Tomas Regalado, who received a Valencia jersey from team officials Tuesday.
Former England star David Beckham is reportedly considering Miami as a destination for his MLS team. When Beckham signed with the LA Galaxy in 2007, his contract gave him the option to purchase a franchise.
Beckham was in South Florida during the NBA Eastern Conference Finals, and during his visit, he toured Florida International University with billionaire Marcelo Claure, who owns Bolivian team Club Bolivar.
"I don't know if we have support for a team, but I do know that we have fans," said Regalado. "Every game, you can see 40,000 people watching futbol. I mean, we have many Latin Americans, we have many Haitian Americans, we have people from Spain, so I think that they should look at South Florida for a team."
Matches on TV also typically draw well in the the Miami-Fort Lauderdale market, something that's not lost on league officials.
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