Header Ban

Will Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo be Tempted to Join David Beckham’s Revolution in Miami?

Inter Miami lost 1-0 to Los Angeles FC in their first MLS match but David Beckham has already got plans to bring some of the world’s top players to Florida.

Former Arsenal winger Carlos Vela, 31, chipped Miami goalkeeper Luis Robles to score the only goal of the game in front of a crowd which included celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay, who was himself a promising footballer as a boy.

© AP Photo / Marcio Jose Sanchez
David and Victoria Beckham watch Inter Miami play in Los Angeles along with his son Brooklyn (far left) and actress Liv Tyler (second from right)

Beckham and his wife Victoria watched the game and admired a plucky performance by their new team, which includes veteran Robles, Argentinian teenager Matias Pellegrini and Mexican midfielder Rodolfo Pizarro. Beckham first proposed an MLS franchise in Miami in 2013 but it has taken seven years to get them off the ground.

MLS commissioner Don Garber said: "This is a project that took a lot of time to get over the finish line but it really speaks to the strength and commitment of that ownership group and David's passion to stick with it.”

​Inter Miami - whose full name is Internacional Club de Futbol Miami - will play their home games at the 19,000-capacity Lockhart Stadium in Fort Lauderdale, 25 miles north of Miami, but Beckham is determined to build a bigger arena in downtown Miami.

Plans have been laid down for Miami Freedom Park, a 25-000-seater stadium and in November 2018 a majority of Miami residents voted in favour of the project in a referendum.

Marcio Jose Sanchez
Inter Miami line up before the game against Los Angeles FC

Supporters of the project say the new stadium and surrounding development will contribute US$40 million a year in tax to the city of Miami and Dade County and generate more than 13,000 jobs.

Beckham has teamed up with Florida tycoon Jorge Mas and his brother Jose, who have brought business acumen to the project.

Beckham, now 44, spent the majority of his career at Manchester United and Real Madrid but joined Los Angeles Galaxy in 2007, giving football fans in the US a huge boost.

The MLS has since become a prime location for ageing footballers who have spent most of their careers in Europe or Latin America, although it is by no means as lucrative as playing for clubs in China or the United Arab Emirates.

There has been speculation Cristiano Ronaldo, 35, and Lionel Messi, 32, could be persuaded to end their careers at Inter Miami.

​Asked on ESPN who Inter Miami fans could hope to see first out of Messi and Ronaldo, Beckham said: “I don’t know. Cristiano is obviously enjoying his time there at Juve, his career has been incredible, and Leo has been a one-club wonder so for those two players I’ve got such admiration for both of them. They’re players who have played at the highest level and they are still doing it week in and week out. So when people turn round to us and say who would you like to have at your club…the mention of having any one of those guys at your club is a dream.”

But Ronaldo, who moved to Juventus from Barcelona, told Sky Sports news: "I'm happy. I'm at the best club in Italy, I'm playing alongside the best players. I'm happy we won trophies last year - and this year I hope to win as well. As an individual I am happy. I went to Juventus to score goals and do my best."

Messi has so far not commented on a move to the US.

No comments

Powered by Blogger.