Soccer match at Busch Stadium seen as step to getting MLS team

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ST. LOUIS (KTVI) – There are reports the cost of joining the MLS could be twice the cost paid by recent teams. The new price tag could reportedly be in the $200 million range.

The news came as soccer fans filed into Busch stadium to watch a match featuring Liverpool FC and AS Roma. Soccer fans in St. Louis have turned out in large numbers for similar exhibition matches.  Many soccer fans believe St. Louis should be awarded a soccer team by the MSL.

“St. Louis is a great sports town, so I think St. Louis would definitely support a soccer team,” said fan.

Fans also point to the support for St. Louis FC as a reason the league should chose St. Louis.

“It’s great, said one fan at Busch Stadium Monday night.  “I went to a game at St. Louis FC and there was a lot of people, a lot of passion.”

Local soccer analyst Bill McDermott said the historical strikes against St. Louis being an expansion city include an absence of an ownership group and a lack of soccer only downtown stadium. He says the league believes downtown stadiums are best suited to attract millennia’s.

“They take urban transportation.  They want to be involved in things downtown,” said McDermott.

We have yet to hear publicly from a potential ownership group, but there have been behind the scenes efforts to line up investors to bring soccer to St. Louis.  What’s not clear is how much those investors are willing to pay, and how much taxpayers will be asked to fund.

McDermott remains confident the MLS will eventually expand to St. Louis.