Blues’ American adventure: Manchester City set for Major League Soccer expansion in New York?

By Andrew Greaves

Reports in America have suggested that Manchester City’s mega-rich owners could be about to secure the much sought after Major League Soccer expansion franchise in New York City.

City owner Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan is rumoured to be prepared to pay the $100 million expansion fee and privately finance a stadium in the borough of Queens, according to Bloomberg News.

Bloomberg, which says its information has been obtained from ‘three people with direct knowledge of the talks’ also suggests that City are ready to offer former England captain – and Manchester United star – David Beckham a role at the new club, which would be called New York City FC.

So far, the MLS and City have remained tight-lipped, with the league’s commissioner Don Garber refusing to reveal about potential owners of the new franchise.

He was quoted last month as saying that the MLS was “at the finish line” in negotiations with New York City officials on the league’s plan to build a 25,000-seat home for a new team based in Flushing Meadows Corona Park in Queens, east of Manhattan.

Beckham ended his MLS playing career this month with a second straight championship as a member of the Los Angeles Galaxy. The star has so far refused to reveal his next move but has reiterated his commitment to the game in America.

The report quotes Simon Heggie, a spokesman for Manchester City, as having said in an e-mail that he was unaware of any such deal.

Picture courtesy of the BBC via YouTube, with thanks.

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