Good news appears to be around the corner for soccer fans in the Twin Cities, as Minnesota United FC is expected to announce entry to the MLS on August 19.
Following comments at this year’s All-Star from MLS commissioner Don Garber, it had appeared likely that Minnesota United FC would be joining Atlanta in the MLS. The question was not so much if, but when an announcement would be made. That question appears to have been answered, as fans received save-the-date cards upon exiting National Sports Center after Minnesota’s loss to Miami on Saturday.
The cards, which feature the hashtag #NextStepMLS, include the date August 19. More details are coming out about what will take place on that day. More from the Pioneer Press:
Commissioner Don Garber and St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman will be in attendance at the to-be-disclosed location, which is expected to be announced this week, a source told the Pioneer Press.
Minnesota was awarded the MLS expansion franchise in March 2015, but it was uncertain when it would join the league, either 2017 or 2018. It should join MLS with Atlanta, bringing the league to 22 teams.
Minnesota, however, has yet to finalize its plans with the state Legislature to receive a property tax exemption for its proposed 21,500-seat stadium in St. Paul’s Midway neighborhood. The projected special Legislative session and St. Paul City Council is expected to meet the week of the MLS announcement and could help propel the stadium initiative. The $200 million stadium was initially planned to be online in 2018, and United is expected to play next season in the University of Minnesota’s TCF Bank Stadium.
The proposed stadium will be up for consideration later this month, as the St. Paul City Council is expected to discuss the matter on August 18. Under the current proposal, a new stadium will be built in St. Paul’s Midway and anchor a 34.4-acre “superblock” that includes additional development.
The Pioneer Press also reports that the team may shorten its name from Minnesota United FC to Minnesota FC.
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