Tim Leiweke, the CEO and president of Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment (MLSE), has joined David Beckham’s Miami MLS investment group, Michelle Kaufman of the Miami Herald reports.
MLSE owns and operates MLS’s Toronto FC, as well as the Toronto Maple Leafs of the NHL and Toronto Raptors of the NBA. Leiweke was previously the CEO of the company that owns Beckham’s former MLS club, the LA Galaxy.
When Beckham signed with the Galaxy in 2007, his contract included a clause that granted him the right to own an MLS expansion franchise. He announced his intentions to operate a club in Miami in early 2014 but the inability to find a stadium to host the team has delayed the process. MLS has been adamant that it will not grant Beckham’s group an expansion franchise without a soccer-specific stadium in downtown Miami.
Over the summer, Beckham’s group held multiple meetings with Miami officials about finding a site for a stadium. The group favors a site next to Marlins Park in the Little Havana neighborhood. Kaufman reports the group hopes to have an agreement by Christmas.
- Dan Gartland