David Beckham's Inter Miami Will Host Galaxy In '20 Home Opener
David Beckham's MLS expansion club Inter Miami CF will "play its inaugural home game on Mar. 14, 2020" against the Galaxy, his former team, according to Michelle Kaufman of the MIAMI HERALD. The 2:30pm ET game will be played at the club's 19,000-seat "temporary home being built on the site of the former Lockhart Stadium, where South Florida's last MLS team -- the Miami Fusion -- played" from '98-'01. More than 300 construction workers are "working seven days a week to get the project completed on time." The East and West stands are "already in place, floor decking was being installed and the seats will come next." Scoreboards are "scheduled for the end of November." Construction also has "begun on the training facility and a three-deck VIP Club in the northwest corner of the stadium." Meanwhile, sod is being "installed in the main stadium, and will be rolled out on the training fields in the coming weeks" (MIAMI HERALD, 11/14). The AP's Tim Reynolds noted the Galaxy are a "fitting home debut opponent" for Inter Miami, as Beckham "has his new team in large part because of an arrangement he struck when playing" in L.A. The contract Beckham signed with the Galaxy in '07 gave him the "right to start an expansion franchise" for $25M. Inter Miami will play in Ft. Lauderdale for "at least its first two seasons and is still planning to build a stadium in Miami" (AP, 11/13).
BACK TO THE DRAWING BOARD: In Ft. Lauderdale, Susannah Bryan in a front-page story noted Miami city commissioners "voted against a plan to lease the city-owned Melreese golf course" to Inter Miami. The commissioners said that the "no-bid contract with Miami Freedom Park LLC needed to be revised after appraisals come in on the 73-acre parcel." Miami officials are "expected to vote on a new contract Dec. 12, but they may entertain a proposal to kill the deal altogether and put the entire project out to bid." Sources said that if the city "kills the deal," Lockhart Stadium "likely would be the team's home base beyond the current two-year schedule." The team already has a deal with Ft. Lauderdale to lease property near Ft. Lauderdale Executive Airport for 50 years. Inter Miami Managing Owner Jorge Mas "holds out hope that the Miami deal will get done" (South Florida SUN SENTINEL, 11/13).