- Posted by Drew Epperley
- On March 16, 2009
- 6 Comments
- FC Barcelona, Philadelphia Expansion, Philadelphia Union
One day you have an expansion bid and the next day you may still have an expansion bid. According to the Sports Business Journal, FC Barcelona is exploring an investment in MLS’s Philadelphia expansion franchise. Yes no less than a few weeks after backing out of one expansion bid down south in Miami, the Spanish giants are looking to potentially get on board with a club that actually will play in MLS starting next year.
Joan LaPorta, president of FC Barcelona, visited Philadelphia on Feb. 28 and toured the site of the franchise’s future stadium being constructed in Chester, Pa. The tour took place days before FC Barcelona announced it wouldn’t pursue an expansion franchise in Miami.
MLS Commissioner Don Garber declined to comment on the visit but said, “FC Barcelona has expressed for some time an interest in Major League Soccer financially and strategically. They spent a great deal of time with us looking at Miami and are continuing to look at opportunities around the league.”
MLS Philadelphia CEO Nick Sakiewicz said he didn’t discuss investing in the franchise with LaPorta but acknowledged that the Philadelphia franchise is still looking for strategic partners.
There has been loads of talk surrounding the financial health of this expansion club. Adding a backing like Barcelona as we all know would be a huge step for this club. Plus for Barcelona you could see Philly being just as important to them as Miami was going to be.
Barcelona’s involvement could help ease the blow of some financial loss that the Philly owners are having right now. Plus having them as even a sister club would be huge.
More details will come of this soon. Either way we will see Barcelona help someone out here.