March 04, 2009

David Beckham's truncated contract arrangement with Major League Soccer, one that returns him to the U.S. in the summer to play perhaps 13 games left in the season, was apparently too little, too late to save the proposed Barcelona Miami MLS team that investor Marcelo Claure was working launch in Florida in 2010.

Though it has yet to be formally announced, a number of reports, including one from the Los Angeles Times, indicate that a deal is place for Beckham to remain with AC Milan until the Serie A season concludes this year.

He would then rejoin Los Angeles during the summer transfer window in July, which would leave just thriteen games of the regular season for him to play. At the end of the year, Beckham would excercise an opt-out clause in his contract that would have him completely out of the league before the Miami team would ever place a team on the field.

Though the English midfielder failed to help the Galaxy to the playoffs in either of his two seasons with the team, he was successful in drawing attention and crowds to games.

Apparently, the loss of these impressive attendance numbers contributed to Claure's decision to fold his Miami MLS campaign.

"The economic terms change if David Beckham does not return to MLS," said Claure in in interview with In the interview, given before the official announcement of the end of MLS Miami, Claure warned that there was little chance of the campaign moving forward

Claure may have been looking for an excuse to withdraw his bid, however. MLS has set the expansion franchise price at $40 million, with another $20 million that must be committed to starting costs and stadium development.

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