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03.03.2009 21:35

Barça end interest in MLS franchise


Barça, Major League Soccer and Marcelo Claure have all agreed to end any interest in setting up a franchise in Miami after lengthy negotiations surrounding the financial aspect of the bid, according to an official statement from the Catalan club.

Below is the official statement from FC Barcelona.

"Major League Soccer, FC Barcelona and businessman Marcelo Claure have jointly agreed to not pursue the candidacy for Miami to have a new franchise in the expanding MLS. After extensive talks and a joint evaluation, the decision was made because it is not viable at this time, due to the adverse market conditions, to start a new team in the south of Florida in 2010.

Despite that, FC Barcelona maintains its commitment with the MLS and the United States and will continue to work with them and with Marcelo Claure on other soccer-related projects.

"I would like to thank FC Barcelona and Marcelo Claure for the effort that they put in to trying to found a team in the city of Miami, MLS agent Don Garber stated.

"FC Barcelona is one of the biggest clubs in sport and is strategically very well placed within the industry and I think them for the opportunity of working both them and with Marcelo Claure over the past few months," he added.

The corporate director general of FC Barcelona, Joan Oliver, explained that the North American market continues to be a priority for the club. "We will continue with our agreement of promotion and marketing with Soccer United Marketing (the business that controls the commercial side of the MLS) and we will seek ways to strengthen our relationship with this organisation, as well as with the fans in the United States," he explained

Marcelo Claure also spoke as he said. "I would like to reiterate my confidence in the MLS and in the future of professional soccer within the United States, above all in the south of Florida. Despite not being able to move this initiative any further forward on this occasion, due to various reasons, I will continue to work with FC Barcelona on other soccer projects in the south of Florida."
Barça end interest in MLS franchise

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