MLS Adds 20th Franchise with New York City Football ClubManchester City, Yankees Own Team That Will Kick Off in 2015; YES May Televise Matches 5/21/2013 8:33 AM Eastern
Major League Soccer will add a 20th franchise and a second in the New York metro area, kicking off in 2015.
Manchester City Football Club and the New York Yankees have acquired the New York City Football Club. Manchester City will be the majority owner of the new club, with the Yankees serving as an active member of the ownership group. The franchise is reportedly value at $100 million.
Given the Yankees' ownership stake, the YES Network, the regional sports network home of MLB's New York Yankees, could present NYCFC matches locally, when they don't conflict with Bronx Bombers' telecasts. New York Yankees president Randy Levine said it was a possibility that YES would air the soccer side's contests.
MSG is the long-time TV partner of the the area's other MLS team, the New York Red Bulls and its predecessor squad, the MetroStars. That RSN, which is currently has a multiyear deal with the Red Bulls, has aired the franchise’s games since MLS’s inaugural 1996 season.
The Yankees and Manchester City Football Club have an existing commercial relationship through Legends Hospitality, LLC, the international entertainment, hospitality and marketing organization. This Saturday May 25, Yankee Stadium will host Manchester City’s "friendly" against Chelsea FC.
NYCFC is scouting for a new permanent stadium in New York. Until then, the new team is arranging to play in an interim home for its first MLS season in 2015, which could play out at Yankee Stadium. Over the past year, MLS has held discussions with the City of New York and other stakeholders about the possibility of constructing a new stadium in Flushing Meadows Corona Park in Queens. The club's new management will continue these discussions with local government officials, community residents and businesses, soccer leagues, and MLS. The club will continue to review other potential sites as well.
"We proudly welcome two of the most prestigious professional global sports organizations to Major League Soccer," said MLS commissioner Don Garber in a statement. "This is a transformational development that will elevate the league to new heights in this country. The New York area is home to more than 19 million people, and we look forward to an intense crosstown rivalry between New York City Football Club and the New York Red Bulls that will captivate this great city."