Miami-Dade ready to begin soccer stadium negotiations with David Beckham\

Announcement expected in early February

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MIAMI - The Miami-Dade County mayor's office says negotiations will begin this week with David Beckham's group over a potential Major League Soccer stadium site in Miami.

The group, which is led by the English soccer superstar, asked the county if it would consider allowing a stadium at PortMiami.

Mayor Carlos Gimenez has said the county would not finance a stadium. But the group is looking at leasing county land at the port and privately funding the 25,000 stadium.

As a part of Beckham's contract with the Los Angeles Galaxy, he was given the opportunity to buy an expansion franchise at a discounted rate, believed to be about $25 million.

Earlier this month, MLS Commissioner Don Garber said the league expects to make an announcement on the status of Beckham's expansion plans in early February.

"There's a lot of work that needs to happen," Garber said. "We can't go to Miami without the right stadium solution. David understands that. The city understands that. That's an indisputable fact. We can't have different rules in Miami than we have in any other city. We want to do as much as we can to work with David and Simon Fuller to get something done as quickly as we can."

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