Soccer

Beckham enjoys World Cup at Miami watch party until the end. Now, onto stadium pitch

David Beckham hosts World Cup watch party at The Wharf Miami

David Beckham hosts England vs Croatia watch party for hundreds of soccer fans at The Wharf Miami to watch
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David Beckham hosts England vs Croatia watch party for hundreds of soccer fans at The Wharf Miami to watch

On Thursday, David Beckham and his partnership group will present the Miami City Commission with a detailed proposal to replace the Melreese Country Club with his Major League Soccer stadium complex.

But first, he spent some time at The Wharf on Wednesday, cheering and celebrating with local soccer fans even though his native England lost 2-1 in extra time to Croatia in the World Cup semifinal.

The packed crowd broke out into cheers early on as England opened scoring in the fifth minute with a goal from Kieran Trippier off a free kick.

England held onto the lead into the second half until Croatia’s Ivan Perisic tied it in the 68th minute. Mario Mandzukic sent in the game-winner in the 109th minute.

Everything will be back to business for Beckham and Co. on Thursday when they present in front of the five-person city commission.

He hopes the meeting has a better result than what he watched happen to his homeland England on the pitch in Russia.

“People in Miami are very aware, actually globally people are very aware that this has been a hell of a journey, a long journey, one that had started when I was with the [Los Angeles] Galaxy and then when I finished playing and we decided to bring soccer to Miami, people know the obstacles that we’ve come up against,” Beckham said Wednesday on WQAM’s The Big O Show. “People expected us to just walk away, but that’s not what I’ve been about in my career, in my life, in my family life. These things that I know are worth waiting for — a risk always comes with hard work and with obstacles. We have had those, but we are finally here. We’re finally bringing football to Miami and that’s something to be excited about.”

The ultimate goal of Thursday’s presentation: To add a referendum to the November ballot that would allow voters to decide if they want to lease the public land to Beckham’s group.

The group shared a video Sunday showing how they plan to redevelop the Melreese Country Club, located at Northwest 37th Avenue and the Dolphin Expressway near Miami International Airport, into a complex that includes a 25,000-seat stadium, restaurant and retail space, soccer fields, a public park and a “golf entertainment facility.”

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