Sacramento, California - Today, Mayor Darrell Steinberg announced an agreement in principle regarding the acquisition of Sacramento Republic FC (SRFC) by Sac Soccer & Entertainment Holdings (SSEH) to present a united front to Major League Soccer (MLS) during the upcoming expansion process.
“I am extremely pleased to announce that we have reached an agreement in principle that ensures Sacramento Republic FC will be the future of MLS for Sacramento. I thank all involved for their commitment to our city and for putting the public first. By working together, we have the strongest bid and are committed to ensuring Sacramento Republic FC becomes the next MLS team,” said Sacramento Mayor Darrell Steinberg.
The Mayor continued by saying, “Thank you to both Kevin Nagle and Warren Smith for coming together with me these past two intensive days and thank you to everyone in this region whose passion and support have given us the beautiful gift of soccer in Sacramento.
Thank you to Warren Smith for pouring his blood, sweat, and tears into this city and region to bring us professional soccer. Without you – we would not have this opportunity. Sacramento Republic FC is part of our culture now and the indomitable spirit the fans embody is the exact kind of vibrancy we want to cultivate throughout the region.
Thank you to Kevin Nagle for investing in Sacramento – not just through sports, but through your numerous philanthropic endeavors. You have been an incredible partner for our city and region at each turn. Without you we would not be on the cusp of securing and building a state-of-the-art MLS stadium in the Railyards for the best fans and team around – the Sacramento Republic FC.”
“At long last, Sacramento stands before MLS as one team and one community,” said Kevin Nagle, Chairman and CEO of SSEH. “From day one, my hope and expectation was to come together with Sacramento Republic FC as a united front. While it took longer than I had hoped, we’ve now reached our goal and delivered the result that Sacramento and Republic FC fans deserve. I thank Mayor Steinberg for his leadership, and congratulate Warren Smith and his team for building something truly special in SRFC. It’s now time to finish what we started and fulfill Sacramento’s destiny as an MLS city.”
“On behalf of Sacramento Republic FC and all of its fans and supporters, I want to thank Mayor Steinberg for his leadership during these meetings,” said Warren Smith, President and Co-founder of Sacramento Republic FC. “His leadership was instrumental in bringing the parties together, and we are hopeful that the principle terms we discussed today can result in a definitive agreement that will lead Sacramento Republic FC to Major League Soccer. Thanks to our fans, supporters and indomitable city, Republic FC will be Sacramento’s MLS team.”
Under the agreement in principle, which culminated after two days of marathon negotiations facilitated by Mayor Steinberg, Sacramento Republic FC will become the name and brand of Sacramento’s potential MLS team.
Warren Smith and his current ownership group will continue to own and operate the USL franchise until the start of MLS play. Once MLS play begins, Kevin Nagle and SSEH will become the owners of the team. Nagle and SSEH will continue to lead the MLS expansion bid process, including ongoing progress on a proposed MLS stadium at the downtown Railyards.
The parties will draft and execute definitive documents in the coming weeks.
The MLS expansion process is currently ongoing. On January 31, SSEH submitted an expansion application to MLS on behalf of Sacramento. SSEH considered a leading contender for one of the next two expansion teams awarded by MLS. MLS has said that it intends to announce its next two expansion teams in 2017 with those teams beginning play in 2020.