Major League Soccer went from 12 to 10 teams following the 2001 season, and many wondered about the future of a top-flight league because of it. However, since then it has been nothing but uphill for the league and in the coming years they are looking add a 24th team to the fold.
One area to watch in the race for the 24th franchise appears to be the Twin Cities, and that’s because Minnesota Vikings owner Zygi Wilf is looking towards the league with the new stadium being built-in Minneapolis.
In a radio interview with WCCO in the Twin Cities, Vikings VP Lester Bagely made it clear that MLS is something on the owners radar.
To help gear themselves up for hosting an MLS team, Bagely and the Vikings are part of the team bringing a game between Manchester City and Olympiakos to TCF Bank Stadium on the campus of the University of Minnesota.
As for the MLS talk, Bagley admitted to working behind the scenes over the last few years with MLS leadership.
“We’ve been working with the MLS at the leadership level for the last couple of years,” said Bagely. “Now that we’ve kind of turned the corner on major construction of the new stadium and we’ve secured the Super Bowl for our market, we’re now kind of turning our full attention to MLS.”
The Twin Cities aren’t the only area looking toward securing the Sacramento, Las Vegas and others were mentioned directly by Bagely in his conversation on WCCO.
MLS will be adding New York City FC and Orlando City SC for the 2015 season, while Atlanta has been awarded a franchise to start in 2017 and Miami is tentatively in the mix as team No. 23 for the league.