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Miami’s MLS stadium hits yet another potential snag

Bruce Matheson filed a lawsuit against Miami-Dade County

A rendering of David Beckham’s MLS Miami stadium concept in Overtown
A rendering of David Beckham’s MLS Miami stadium concept in Overtown

At this pace, David Beckham will have his MLS stadium constructed in Miami—-circa 2030.

The latest hiccup in what’s been a hurdle-infused four-year affair is wealthy local Bruce Matheson filing a lawsuit against Miami-Dade County over how a chunk of Overtown land was acquired, per the Miami Herald.

Matheson filed a suit last week over the planned $9 million no-bid sale of roughly three acres to Beckham’s team that’d allow them to build a 25,000-seat soccer stadium in Overtown:

Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez used the state’s economic-development law to sell the land without offering it up to other buyers. The Matheson complaint, filed in Miami-Dade Circuit Court, cites state law requiring that land sales go to “the highest and best bidder.”

Matheson has already played a role in blocking expansion of Key Biscayne’s annual Miami Open tennis tournament, which is housed on land his family once owned. The county’s response, via Mayor Gimenez’s communications director, Michael Hernández, has a humorous tone.

“It’s apparent that Mr. Matheson hates professional sports,” Hernández told the Herald. “He’s doing his best to drive out the Miami Open from Key Biscayne, and now he hopes to block Major League Soccer from coming to Miami.”

County commissioners approved the sale June 6 and Beckham has until mid-September to make a $500,000 down payment on the land. The main pushback is by residents of Spring Garden, which is near the stadium site.

Beckham’s team is awaiting league approval, which they expect to have by early August.