Orlando To Become MLS Expansion Team If Vote Is Approve

Orlando To Become MLS Expansion Team If Vote Is Approve

  • Posted by Drew Epperley
  • On October 21, 2013
  • 1 Comments
  • Features, MLS Expansion, Orlando Expansion
An artist's rendering of Orlando's proposed Major League Soccer stadium was released by architecture firm Woods Bagot. (September 30, 2013)

An artist’s rendering of Orlando’s proposed Major League Soccer stadium was released by architecture firm Woods Bagot. (September 30, 2013)

Major League Soccer executives are headed to Florida to lend their support for the upcoming vote for Orlando City’s stadium plans.

The Orlando Sentinel is reporting that MLS president Mark Abbott was in Orlando to meet with Orange County commissioners ahead of a vote tomorrow on stadium funding.

Abbott said  MLS officials will likely add Orlando ‘very quickly’ should the deal get passed. MLS will be adding four expansion teams before the 2020 season and Orlando has long been at the top of the list for expansion.

Orange County leaders will vote Tuesday whether to steer $20 million in county tourist taxes toward a new $84 million downtown soccer stadium. Orlando City Council leaders unanimously approved the deal earlier this month, in part, to help quickly land a MLS expansion team.

ESPNFC’s Jeff Carlisle wrote last week that the deal likely will come down to a tight vote.

But approval hinges on a vote by the Orange County board of county commissioners (BCC) set for this Tuesday. Multiple sources have told ESPNFC.com that at present OCSC doesn’t have the five votes (of the seven-member body) needed to pass the measure.

Two BCC members — Pete Clark and Fred Brummer — are currently in the “no” column. A third commissioner, Ted Edwards, said he hasn’t decided which way he’ll vote, but has admitted he has several issues with the proposed stadium deal.

Tomorrow will certainly be a telling day for soccer fans in Florida. Let’s all hope it goes smoothly and we can begin talking about the 21st club in MLS.