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MLS Commissioner Says League Will Expand to 28 Teams, Impressed by Sacramento’s Bid

By sradmin, 04/14/16, 8:00PM PDT

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Commissioner makes announcement in front of well over 2,400 Sacramento Republic FC fans.

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (April 14, 2016) – MLS Commissioner Don Garber announced today that the league will be expanding to 28 teams, and that he that he was very impressed by Sacramento. Garber made the announcement today during an MLS Block Party before more than 2,400 Republic FC fans.
 

“I want to thank all of you for the support you have shown the Republic,” said MLS Commissioner Don Garber. “I want to thank Kevin Nagle and his partners for doing everything they have done to bring this city to the forefront for what we hope and expect to be an expansion market very, very soon.”

Mayor Johnson and Republic FC hosted Garber, and representatives from MLS, during their pitch for why Sacramento should be an MLS city. The visit consisted of series of meetings, a stop at the proposed stadium site at The Railyards and ended with a block party celebration that closed down parts of downtown Sacramento.

“It was a huge honor for us to be able to host Commissioner Garber in Sacramento today and we are so excited by his announcement,” said Republic FC Lead Investor Kevin Nagle. “While we are not at the finish line yet, we have shown that we are prepared to do whatever it takes to become an MLS city.”

Garber started his day meeting with Republic FC Lead Investor Kevin Nagle and Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson. Afterwards, Garber took a driving tour of Sacramento including stops at the current Republic FC stadium Bonney Field, the proposed stadium site at the Railyards and the Golden 1 Center. The commissioner then met with investors, corporate partners, Republic FC President Warren Smith and San Francisco 49ers President Paraag Marathe, before interacting with hundreds of fans at a block party celebration.

“Once again we saw the best of Sacramento, a city and region that rises to the occasion time and time again,” said Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson. “We set out to show the Commissioner first hand that we are built for MLS with an ownership group that is second to none, a stadium plan that is ready to go and a market that has the best fans on the planet and today we put it in the back of the net.”

Well over 2,400 Republic FC supporters attended the MLS Block Party, packing L Street between 15th and 16th streets from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. to welcome the commissioner to Sacramento. Mayor Kevin Johnson fired up the crowd before Garber answered questions from fans.

“Obviously everybody here is Built for MLS,” said Republic FC season ticket holder Tim Bloomgren. “We have been waiting for this announcement for a while now and hope to see it come to fruition in a couple of years. It validates all our hard work.”