MLS

Miami Soccer in Review: Clubs throughout the county position themselves for the next decade

Miami Soccer in Review | In 2019, Inter Miami CF announced a plan to build a stadium to serve as a temporary venue for its Major League Soccer team and a permanent home for a USL League One side. Photo via Inter Miami CF.

Magic City Soccer will take the last 10 days of 2019 to review the last 10 years of Miami-Dade County soccer. Today in Miami Soccer in Review, we take a look back at 2019. As the decade closes, Inter Miami CF, The Miami FC and more prepare for the next decade and beyond.

2019 began with Inter Miami CF targeting Miami Freedom Park and a not-yet-named temporary venue. The Miami FC was preparing for its second season in the National Premier Soccer League. And Miami United FC was gearing up for its sixth season at Ted Hendricks Stadium in Hialeah. By the end of the year, Inter Miami was nearly done building a stadium no one envisioned in January, Miami FC was onto its third league in 12 months, and Miami United moved across the county.

Miami Soccer in Review: Everything changes for Inter Miami CF in 2018

Miami Soccer in Review | David Beckham speaks to a crowd at Regatta Park in Coconut Grove before Fútbol Miami MLS makes it presentation in front of the City of Miami commission. Co-owner Jorge Mas is pictured to the left. Photo by Matthew Bunch.

Magic City Soccer will take the last 10 days of 2019 to review the last 10 years of Miami-Dade County soccer. Today in Miami Soccer in Review, we take a look back at 2018. Everything, from ownership to name to stadium location, was changed for Miami Beckham United (later Inter Miami CF).

As we covered yesterday, the fall of 2017 was a dark time for Miami Beckham United. No substantive, positive news had developed in more than a year. But a breakfast meeting and an e-mail brought Jorge Mas, CEO of MasTec, into the fold. By January 2018, the ownership group was appearing at the Adrienne Arsht Center to celebrate.

Changes came thick and fast, as Mas brought his local knowledge to the bid. Out was the Overtown bid. In was Melreese Country Club, which would require a lease with the City of Miami.

Local politics required local support, so the team tried to bring supporters to counter the supporters of the golf club. David Beckham and Mas rallied the troops outside the city commission’s chambers on July 12.

Later that evening, the commission would decide to punt for a week. After a week of further negotiation, a 3-2 vote allowed the residents of the city to vote on whether the commission could negotiate further.

More public support was now needed, and so the public relations campaign began. A Sporting Director (Paul McDonough) was hired, a logo and name were revealed and the team paid for a front-page wrap of the Miami Herald to announce it.

After nearly four months, more than 60 percent of city residents voted to allow the negotiations. Of course, if you don’t know by now, the project that would come to be known as Miami Freedom Park became one more giant hurdle that has yet to be cleared.

Miami FC NPSL-bound

Another entity that struggled with repeated challenges was the North American Soccer League. In 2018, the league, which repeatedly challenged the U.S. Soccer Federation, cancelled its season after failing to regain certification. The Miami FC took measures to keep playing, joining the National Premier Soccer League.

Paul Dalglish, taking over for Alessandro Nesta, had an enormous burden to carry. The club failed to produce another memorable cup run, but did claim the NPSL’s national title thanks to a 3-2 defeat of FC Motown from Morristown, New Jersey.

Miami United cup crazy

Now, why did The Miami FC fail to produce another memorable cup run? Two words: Miami United.

Miami United strung together a cup run nearly as memorable as Miami FC’s in 2017, defeating Miami and Jacksonville Armada (NASL exiles) before hosting Orlando City SC at Ted Hendricks Stadium in Hialeah. Orlando City, after failing against Fort Lauderdale Strikers and Miami FC, were loath to lose to a Florida team again. A 3-0 defeat ended the dream for Miami United, but not before lots of attention was paid to the pink and blue.

Miami United FC: South Florida’s Fresh Hope

Miami United FC is South Florida’s fresh hope in the 2018 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup. They face MLS side Orlando City this Wednesday!

International Champions Cup double-dip

Nothing could match the excitement of El Clásico Miami in 2017. However, another double dip of international friendlies came to Hard Rock Stadium. Manchester City saw off Bayern Munich on July 28, and three days later Manchester United upset plenty of Los Blancos fans, defeating Real Madrid 2-1.

2018 also saw the debut of the International Champions Cup Women’s Tournament in Miami. North Carolina Courage claimed the title, besting European giants Olympique Lyonnais; Manchester City claimed third place, beating Paris Saint-Germain.

Colleges

The FIU men entered 2018 with very high expectations. Two players ( Santiago Patino and Joris Ahlinvi) were named to the preseason MAC Hermann Trophy Watch List. Many expected a run similar to what we saw in 2017. However, the team found disappointment, finishing with a 7-10 record and a first-round tournament exit at the hands of Marshall.

If the FIU men were disappointing, the FIU women were shocking. The team fell to 0-17-1, and if not for a brace by Rayquel Berry against Louisiana Tech, it would have been a pointless season.

The Miami Hurricanes, in their first year under Sarah Barnes, weren’t much better. A win over FIU did avenge their 2017 loss, but a 5-9-2 record was not what Barnes was looking for in her debut.

High Schools

On the girls’ side, Lourdes again claimed a Class 5A title, defeating Oviedo 1-0. Miami Country Day reached the 1A state final, but lost to the juggernaut that is St. John’s Country Day.

On the boys’ side, Class 1A Palmer Trinity claimed another state title, downing Maclay 2-1. Miami Beach nearly edged Plant City for the Class 5A title, but fell in penalty kicks, 3-2.

Join us on New Year’s Day for the final post in Miami Soccer in Review.

Miami Soccer in Review: The Miami FC brings MLS to Miami in 2017 as Beckham bid nearly collapses

Miami Soccer in Review | The Miami FC forward Kwadwo Poku scores past Atlanta United defender Carlos Carmona to win the club's U.S. Open Cup tie at Riccardo Silva Stadium in Miami on June 28, 2017. Photo via The Miami FC.

Magic City Soccer will take the last 10 days of 2019 to review the last 10 years of Miami-Dade County soccer. Today in Miami Soccer in Review, we take a look back at 2017. The Miami FC makes an enthralling U.S. Open Cup run, and Jorge Mas offers a lifeline to a Miami Beckham United ready to quit.

When The Miami FC was announced in 2015. owner Riccardo Silva indicated that the U.S. Open Cup would prove to be as important as league performance. That wasn’t reflected in 2016, when the club was bombed out in its first game by Wilmington Hammerheads FC. In 2017, however, a magical run would show the potential that The Miami FC presented the South Florida soccer community.

Miami Soccer in Review: 2014 officially starts the MLS madness that would become Inter Miami CF

Miami Soccer in Review | From Left: MLS Commissioner Don Garber, David Beckham and Miami-Dade County mayor Carlos Giménez pose at Pérez Art Museum Miami on Feb. 5, 2014. Photo via Pérez Art Museum Miami

Magic City Soccer will take the last 10 days of 2019 to review the last 10 years of Miami-Dade County soccer. Today in Miami Soccer in Review, we take a look back at 2014. The announcement Miami’s been waiting for finally comes. And kicks off a half-decade of more waiting.

It was a picture-perfect moment for a picture-perfect day. Don Garber, commissioner of Major League Soccer on one side. Carlos Giménez, mayor of Miami-Dade County on the other. All around, the Pérez Art Museum Miami, a focal point for Miami’s modern development. And standing squarely in the middle: David Beckham.

Miami Soccer in Review: David Beckham begins Miami odyssey in 2013

Miami Soccer in Review: LeBron James shakes hands with David Beckham during Game 7 Of the Eastern Conference Finals. Beckham was in town to tour possible venues for a Major League Soccer team. Eventual partner Marcelo Claure stands to Beckham's right. Photo via Getty Images.

Magic City Soccer will take the last 10 days of 2019 to review the last 10 years of Miami-Dade County soccer. Today in Miami Soccer in Review, we take a look back at 2013. An international superstar started to sniff around Miami, but what many hoped would be the beginning of the end of Miami’s time without Major League Soccer would turn out to only be the beginning of the beginning.

It felt like Miami was the center of the sports world in the summer of 2013. The Miami Heat were on their way to a second consecutive NBA Finals win, and attracting attention from all corners. One of the interested parties was soccer superstar David Beckham, who sat courtside during Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Finals. He was the guest of a high-profile Miami-based CEO: Brightstar’s Marcelo Claure.

Their presence at that game on May 30 was a hint of a larger story to break the following week: Beckham, who retained a $25 million expansion fee clause with Major League Soccer, would look to bring a side to Miami-Dade County.

Miami Soccer in Review: The decade begins with 2010, an Annus Horribilis

Marcelo Claure, now an owner of Inter Miami CF, originally intended to bring a Major League Soccer team to Miami in partnership with Barcelona in 2010. Photo by Patrick Farrell, Miami Herald

Magic City Soccer will take the last 10 days of 2019 to review the last 10 years of Miami-Dade County soccer. Here, we begin our look back at a decade of Miami soccer in review with 2010, an Annus Horribilis.

The decade of the 2010s was supposed to open with a bang for the Miami soccer community. In October 2008, Barcelona announced that it would be partnering with Brightstar Corp. CEO Marcelo Claure to bring an Major League Soccer team to FIU Stadium, possibly as soon as 2010.

If you know anything about soccer in Miami this decade, you know this couldn’t have compared less favorably with what actually happened. In fact, the only constant was Claure, now involved in the ownership of Inter Miami CF.

So you want to follow the 2019 MLS Expansion Draft? History, process and more explained.

The 2019 MLS Expansion Draft will feature five selections from Inter Miami CF and Nashville SC each. Inter Miami will pick first, thanks to a coin flip on Oct. 6, 2019.

Major League Soccer has some terms that can be a bit intimidating to new fans as it relates to player aquisition. GAM (General Allocation Money), TAM (Targeted Allocation Money), DP (Designated Player). But one of the first terms every fan of a new team needs to learn is “Expansion Draft.” The 2019 MLS Expansion Draft will take place this evening. What is it? How does it work? And what does this mean for Inter Miami CF?