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Beckham takes major step toward Miami MLS franchise with land deal

21:46 BST 06/06/2017
David Beckham 2016
The former Manchester United and LA Galaxy star's ownership group has secured the land for its privately-funded 25,000-seat stadium in Miami

After years of stops and starts, it appears David Beckham's Major League Soccer franchise in Miami is growing closer to becoming a reality. 

On Tuesday, Beckham's group secured the right to buy the remaining three acres of a nine-acre property on which it intends to build a soccer stadium.

Miami-Dade commissioners voted 9-4 in favor of a $9 million deal to sell the land for the stadium, which the group has agreed to privately fund, in the city's Overtown neighborhood. 

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The deal to construct the stadium is still awaiting city approval, but the agreement to secure the land for a stadium marks a significant milestone in a four-year bid to bring a Beckham-owned MLS franchise to South Florida.

The ownership group, which also includes Sprint CEO Marcelo Claure and American Idol founder Simon Fuller, has seen various bids to purchase land across the city fall short before Tuesday's news.

The group released a statement, saying: "We're thrilled that we're getting closer to our kick-off."

With the league currently at 22 teams, Major League Soccer has declared its intent to eventually expand to 28 teams. Los Angeles FC will debut as team 23 next season, and the league is thought to be saving the 24th spot for Beckham's Miami franchise.

After Tuesday's agreement, that intention is much closer to reality.