Despite its continued USL success and recent strides toward MLS, it does not appear that Sacramento Republic FC is taking its MLS chances for granted.
With MLS approaching its December decision on expansion, Republic FC appears to be in a good position. The club has had its stadium plan approved by the city, and has seen signs that its strong fan support in the USL will carry over to MLS. In addition, it has a major partnership in place, as the club recently announced a binding jersey sponsorship deal with UC Davis Health.
In recent remarks, MLS commissioner Don Garber noted the progress Sacramento has made. However, as he has before, Garber singled out a few competing pitches in the process, and Sacramento officials do not sound as though say that they are not taking the club’s chances of a successful expansion bid for granted. More from The Sacramento Bee:
In the meantime, Sacramento has maintained its position as one of the front-runners. MLS Commissioner Don Garber continues to praise the city’s efforts, touting “great progress” in Sacramento during remarks at a Yahoo Finance summit on Wednesday.
However, Sacramento wasn’t the only city Garber mentioned this week – or in recent months. He said there’s also been “great progress” in Detroit, that Cincinnati was doing “a great job” and that Nashville was generating a lot of support for an emerging stadium plan. Other major U.S. cities remain interested, including Phoenix, San Antonio and the Tampa Bay region.
Sacramento leaders said they are aware the competition is tough.
“We are in a very strong position, but we cannot let up and we are not going to let up,” Mayor Darrell Steinberg said. “We have to make it clear to the league that we are hungry and that we are the perfect community for expansion.”
Republic FC is hoping to be included in MLS’ upcoming announcement of two expansion clubs, and the league is expected to announce an additional pair sometime next year. In our most recent expansion odds, Sacramento, Nashville, Detroit, and Cincinnati were highlighted as the top four contenders.