Minnesota boss Adrian Heath has predicted that David Beckham’s Inter Miami will follow Manchester City ’s fast-track to success — with a cash-driven blitz of the MLS.
Former Everton striker Heath has been in American football since 2008 and managed Orlando City as well as his current side Minnesota United.
And he can’t remember more hype, expectation and excitement around a new MLS season since arriving in the USA – with Beckham’s Miami franchise set to change the landscape of the game in the US.
Beckham’s Eastern Conference side kick off their inaugural season with a trip to Los Angeles FC a week today.
Inter Miami might only be in its infancy, but Heath can already see that the game plan of Beckham and his big-money backers is in full swing as they look to bankroll Miami’s road to success as quickly as they can.
“The people involved in Miami are billionaires and they aren’t going to just dip their toe in the water and see how it goes,” said Heath.
“They are going to try and do a Manchester City and throw all their financial muscle at it to ensure they get where they want to be as fast as possible.
“They are building an incredible new stadium in Miami, but, until it’s ready, they’ve built a 20,000-seater arena in Fort Lauderdale to start off and then plan to give that to their second team.
“They’ve also spent close to £45million on a training complex, which, by all accounts, is absolutely fantastic and one of the best facilities anywhere.
“I know someone who has been in it and he said it’s incredible, so that’s going to help when they come to recruit big-name stars from the Premier League and Europe.
“There’s a salary cap, of course, with stricter and clearer guidelines than those which exist in Europe with Financial Fair Play, but on top of the infrastructure they’ve also spent more than £20m on their two designated players .
“They’ve signed Mexican international Rodolfo Pizarro, an attacking midfield player, and Matias Pellegrini a really promising Argentinian teenage midfielder from Estudiantes.
“That’s a statement in itself and there will be much bigger names to come, which shows they are serious about establishing themselves as a major force, just like Atlanta United did when they joined the MLS.
“Atlanta spent big money too – but the difference with Miami is that they are in an iconic city and Beckham is the frontman, so the potential is massive.
“That’s why there’s so much hype around the new season. We all know that when David Beckham goes into something, his success rate is good – and I’m sure he’ll want that to continue.
“Beckham and Jorge Mas, the billionaire Miami businessman backing him, have recruited top people in key management positions, much the same as Man City did. And I’m sure Miami’s plans for the future are just as ambitious.”
However, Heath can see pitfalls ahead, especially with Inter being a start-up operation – and facing fan-base problems.
“I was in at the start with Orlando when we went into the MLS and it’s not easy,” he added.
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