(WFI) Nebraska wants Major League Soccer’s 20th team.
Omaha mayor Jim Suttle says his city would be perfect for an MLS franchise and referenced the success of a United Football League team as proof.
Suttle pitched the idea this week during a reverse trade mission, citing an average attendance of 23,000 at the UFL team’s first two games.
“We’re testing the market right now with what’s being done with the Omaha Nighthawks,” he told Omaha World-Herald reporter Ross
“Look at the success story, all of their games have been sellouts. That’s unheard of in [UFL] history.”
Unfinished TD Ameritrade Park, future home of baseball’s College World Series, would be perfect for an MLS squad, Suttle told the newspaper.
The 24,000-seat stadium sports a similar capacity to some of the league’s largest soccer-specific venues, Boettcher reported.
The size of the city, however, is a different story.
Omaha’s 850,000 residents are less than half the population of Columbus, Ohio, the smallest city with an MLS team.
The Portland Timbers and Vancouver Whitecaps FC will join the league next season, and the Montreal Impact will follow suit in 2012.
MLS could add a 20th franchise, likely a resurrected New York Cosmos or a southeastern U.S. team, as soon as 2012.
Philadelphia Tops US Bid City Leader Board
Philadelphia remains in first place in the US World Cup bid’s city-by-city leader board with 49 days to go until FIFA’s big decision.
The Pennsylvania metropolis increased its lead by more than 8,000 in the past two weeks, now boasting 92,557 of a total 1,118,490 supporters.
Indianapolis overtook former leader Houston for second place. Miami and Tampa Bay round out the top five.
The bid has added more than 230,000 new supporters since USA’s Round of 16 berth in this summer’s World Cup and reached its goal of a million well ahead of FIFA’s Dec. 2 vote in Zurich on the 2018 and 2022 World Cup hosts.
By INSIDER’s Matthew Grayson.
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