Aston Villa's holding company, V Sports, will have to splash out hundreds of millions of dollars to secure Las Vegas Villains' spot in Major League Soccer (MLS), with the total cost of setting up the franchise potentially rising to $1 billion.

Wes Edens has been locked in talks with MLS officials in the hope of striking an agreement which could see Las Vegas Villains competing in the MLS by 2026, the same year the World Cup will take place in Canada, Mexico, and the United States.

Places in MLS must essentially be bought for a fee, with no automatic promotion or relegation to speak of, and the price of entry is eye-watering high and rising all the time: from $150m in 2019 to a reported $325m for Charlotte FC to start in the league last year. For that money, you could buy a well-established Premier League team outright.

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ESPN have reported that there are plans to house the team at a new 25,000-seater venue in Las Vegas, which would reportedly include the capability for games to be played indoors - MLS commissioner Don Garber has said that is a requirement for having a club in Vegas. The total cost of a new stadium, expansion fee and additional expenses could reach $1 billion, according to ESPN.

Garber said the decision on whether Las Vegas will be the league’s 30th team will come by the end of 2023. Las Vegas and San Diego are currently leading the race to get the next franchise.

Garber recently said: “San Diego and Las Vegas are the most likely. The 30th team will come at some point soon. We’d like to get that announced by the end of the year.”

Detroit, Phoenix, Sacramento and Tampa are also under consideration, but in January 2022, the MLS exclusive negotiating agreement with Villa's owners Edens and Nassef Sawiris to potentially land a team in Las Vegas.

V Sports recently bought a 46 per cent stake in Portuguese club Vitoria Sport Club. You can read more about the Primeira Liga club and our visit to Guimaraes HERE.


2023-03-30T12:05:06Z dg43tfdfdgfd