Tag Archives: Miami FC

Miami at the heart of Relevent Sports’ USSF lawsuit over league matches

Relevent Sports filed a lawsuit against the U.S. Soccer Federation on Monday. Photographic by Matthew Bunch.

Relevent Sports, LLC, an advertising and marketing firm responsible for bringing high-profile international and club friendlies to North America, has filed suit in New York state court alleging that the U.S. Soccer Federation is improperly prohibiting the organization from bring foreign league matches to the United States.

The lawsuit, which was first reported in the New York Times, is the culmination of months of frustration between Relevent and a number of national federations. Relevent, which is co-owned by Miami Dolphins and Hard Rock Stadium owner Stephen Ross, first attempted to bring a La Liga match between Barcelona and Girona back in January. That plan stalled until finally Barcelona withdrew from the LaLiga North America partnership, at least for this season.

The plan was opposed by the U.S. federation, but also the Spanish federation, FIFA and the Spanish players’ union.

It appears that, without fanfare, Relevent tried again, this time attempting to bring two Ecuadorean clubs (Barcelona S.C. and Guayaquil City) to Hard Rock on May 5. This time, the U.S. Federation more directly rejected the proposal.

According to the Relevent complaint, the federation’s refusal to sanction the game is in violation of Federation Bylaw 102, which states the federation’s purpose is, “to promote, govern, coordinate, and administer the growth and development of soccer in all its recognized forms in the United States for all persons of all ages and abilities, including national teams and international games and tournaments.”

USSF response

On Tuesday, the federation responded, claiming that sanctioning of the game would be in violation of FIFA’s guidelines. Therefore, allowing the game to be played would be detrimental to the game and in violation of Bylaw 102.

While the FIFA Council did make its opinion known on the Miami league game matter last year, that opinion has not yet officially been codified in FIFA’s Laws of the Game. The crux of Relevent’s argument is that the Council’s opinion should not be interpreted as official rule.

Copa connection

Interestingly, the court filing in New York Supreme Court (note: the state supreme court in New York is not the highest court, instead generally serving as a civil trial court) confirms reporting from last year that Relevent Sports made efforts to bring the aborted Copa Libertadores final to Miami, and lays the blame for the failure to land the game at the feet of the USSF president (and Miami resident) Carlos Cordiero.

“At the end of 2018, when fan violence prevented the finals of the Copa Libertadores from taking place in Argentina as scheduled, Relevent and Mr. Ross reached out to USSF and its President, Carlos Cordeiro, to offer to stage the final in Miami, Florida. USSF and Cordeiro effectively refused to engage.”

Legal limbo

This is the third Miami-adjacent lawsuit pending for the USSF. The now-defunct North American Soccer League has filed a lawsuit contending that it has violated anti-trust regulations, and a lawsuit spearheaded by local club The Miami FC to the Court of Arbitration for Sport is asking that promotion and relegation be introduced in the American club game.

The Miami FC finally defeats Miami United, open year with 2-0 win

The Miami FC forward Dario Suarez, left, hugs teammate Tomas Granitto after his "Olimpico" goal against Miami United FC on April 20, 2019. Photo via The Miami FC.

The Magic City Clasico entered its fourth act Saturday night on the campus of Barry University. In the previous three contests, Miami United excelled at frustrating The Miami FC. The rough tackles, the willingness to go to ground, and the physicality all carried over from 2018. There was absolutely zero love lost between the two sides. Unfortunately for United, the 2019 version of Miami FC responds to adversity far better.

Magic City Soccer podcast Episode 66: The Miami FC season kickoff live podcast!

In Magic City Soccer podcast episode 66, Matt (left) and Lee (right) speak to The Miami FC manager Paul Dalglish. Lee and Drew also speak to Lloyd Sam. Join us, won’t you? Photo by Caroline Gomez.

On this episode of the Magic City Soccer podcast, we are live from Concrete Beach Brewery in Wynwood for The Miami FC’s season kickoff event. Special guests (including Lloyd Sam and Paul Dalglish) and frivolity are sure to follow. Join us, won’t you?

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FXE Futbol, LLC presents vision for Lockhart Stadium renovation in town hall

FXE Futbol, LLC managing partner John P. Reynal addresses interested fans about his team's proposal to bring USL Championship football to a redeveloped Lockhart Stadium in Fort Lauderdale. Photo by Lee Ifans.

FXE Futbol, LLC has a sell to make in the next few weeks. The ownership group needs to convince the City of Fort Lauderdale and its commissioners that its plan for soccer at Lockhart Stadium is better than one proposed by Inter Miami CF. Before closing the deal with the city, however, the group attepted to close the deal with fans and supporters of soccer in Broward County on Wednesday night.

Magic City Soccer podcast Episode 65: Miami eyes drift north to Broward, as Inter Miami and FXE Futbol eye Lockhart

FXE Futbol, LLC managing partner John P. Reynal, right, sits down with Magic City Soccer podcast co-host Matthew Bunch to discuss his group's plans for Lockhart Stadium and the USL Championship. Photo by Lee Ifans.

On this episode of the Magic City Soccer podcast, Matt and Lee discuss two bids to redevelop Lockhart Stadium (and have a chance to talk to the managing partner of one of them, John P. Reynal of FXE Futbol, LLC). Friendlies involving The Miami FC and Miami United are also previewed. Join us, won’t you?

To subscribe to Magic City Soccer on iTunes, click here. To subscribe to Magic City Soccer on SoundCloud, click here.
To subscribe on Google Play, Listen on Google Play Music

Fernando Clavijo, National Soccer Hall of Fame member and former Miami FC director dead at 63

Fernando Clavijo reviews the Haitian National Team before its game at the Miami Orange Bowl in 2004. Via Associated Press.

Fernando Clavijo, a Uruguayan-born defender who rose to prominence in the United States as a player, manager and director, passed away Friday after a nearly five-year battle with multiple myeloma.

Fernando Clavijo came to the United States in 1979 to join the New York Apollo of the American Soccer League. He would stay in the U.S., eventually gaining American citizenship in 1987. That decision led to the unlikely role he played in the 1994 FIFA World Cup, where a 38-year-old Clavijo would start three of four games for the host Americans.

Clavijo’s coaching career began as a player-coach in 1991, but he would spend most of the rest of his life on the sidelines. His first journey to South Florida came in 1998, when he led the Florida ThunderCats of the National Professional Soccer League, an indoor team based at what is now the BB&T Center in Broward County.

He would spend time leading two Major League Soccer clubs (New England Revolution 2000-2002, Colorado Rapids 2005-2008) and one national team (Haiti 2003-2005).

After his stint with Colorado, he took a job with Traffic Sports USA, serving as the Director of Soccer for the company and for Miami FC, its entry into the United Soccer League.

From there, Clavijo became FC Dallas’ Technical Director. He remained in that position until his death in Fort Lauderdale on Friday.