June 20, 2014
By Rick Horrow and Karla Swatek
MLS is in preliminary talks with an El Paso group regarding possible expansion into the market. MountainStar Sports Group, which owns the Triple-A El Paso Chihuahuas, has met twice with MLS Commissioner Don Garber. The league plans on expanding to 24 teams by 2020, and El Paso presents a unique opportunity to MLS given its proximity to Mexico.
Miami is another market being targeted for MLS expansion. There, David Beckham’s stadium hopes suffered a big blow after the city took his preferred site off the table. Beckham and his group plan on taking time to consider their remaining options, but MLS is insisting on a site in downtown Miami.
The El Paso group has made it clear that it’s on MLS’s timeline, and a conversation regarding where a stadium would be located hasn’t taken place. Beckham’s Miami team tentatively is the league’s 23rd franchise. If his stadium plans fall through, it represents a greater opportunity for El Paso, especially since MLS has openly considered adding another Texas-based team.