Major League Soccer is expanding to 30 teams in 2025 after San Diego was awarded rights to a new expansion team this week.
MLS Commissioner Don Garber made the announcement Thursday, introducing billionaire Mohamed Mansour and the Sycuan Tribe as co-owners of the team.
Confetti falls during the announcement of a new Major League Soccer team in San Diego Thursday, May 18, 2023, in San Diego. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)
“We are thrilled to welcome San Diego to Major League Soccer as our 30th team,” Garber said in a press release. “For many years, we have believed San Diego would be a terrific MLS market due to its youthful energy, great diversity and the fact that soccer is an essential part of everyday life for so many people.
“San Diego has been eager for another major league sports team, especially since the vacancy created by the NFL departure,” Sycuan Tribal Chairman Cody Martinez also told the outlet, referring to the Chargers, who moved to LA.
“Sycuan, my tribe, has thousands of years of history in the San Diego region, but also has decades of strong, solid support for sports in this town. And so it was really a natural evolution.”
Tom Penn, a former NBA executive and ESPN analyst who served as president of Los Angeles FC until 2020, was introduced as the club’s CEO.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.