Expansion teams make the MLS what it is today, and there’s really no point of pretending like that isn’t the case. We’ve seen sides like LAFC and Atlanta United come into the league in the last few years and make a real impact, and they’re only the tip of the iceberg. There are so many markets out there that feel like they deserve an MLS team in their city, and as we look ahead to the next few hours, it seems as if we might get a little bit of clarity on who could be the 28th MLS team.
As reported by Sacramento Bee, it certainly seems like the Californian city of Sacramento is well and truly in the running when it comes to claiming that elusive spot. A meeting will be held in Los Angeles today in order to discuss what may or may not happen regarding who gets that spot, with Sacramento being one of the frontrunners alongside St. Louis. Fans of the two cities have been going back and forth regarding who will get the nod, but Cali fans should prepare themselves because it looks like it could be good news.
Even FOX seem to believe that Sacramento’s high hopes are justified, and rightly so. They have the kind of infrastructure that is necessary to compete at the MLS level, and even better than that, the proof is in the pudding. Sacramento Republic, who don’t even play at that high of a level in the USL, average 10,000 fans per game – and you’d have to imagine that figure will rise even further if they get a Major League Soccer team.
In terms of major sports this potential new franchise would slot in pretty nicely alongside the Kings, who had a pretty solid season by their standards this year. Sure, they missed out on the playoffs, but they were scratching and clawing right up until the final stretch which is a testament to the heart of the city.
They’ve been considered an underdog town for far too long now, and it really does feel like they’re waiting to break out into the upper echelons. If the trigger is pulled on this move ahead of STL, which is far from a guarantee, then it’d be a great, great boost in momentum for all different kinds of sport in the area.
The stars are aligning
LA billionaire Ron Burkle has been one of the men leading the charge for this move, with the big plan being to buy a 31-acre plot in downtown so that they can build a suitable football stadium. Given how well they’ve laid out their objective thus far, and given what the rumour mill seems to be suggesting, all of the signs truly are pointed in the right direction.
This fast-growing city represents the best that California has to offer in more ways than one, which is saying a lot when you think about how many world class cities are located in The Golden State. It’s time, MLS. Let’s make the right decision here.