Charlotte mayor and Panthers owner to meet with MLS commissioner for special announcement

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - Soccer fans in our state may have a new team to root for soon.

Major League Soccer Commissioner Don Garber will join Panthers owner David Tepper and Charlotte Mayor Vi Lyles for a “special announcement” Tuesday that is expected to be the recognition of Charlotte as the league’s 30th team.

WBTV previously reported that any announcement of a new team would take place in the city the club is awarded to.

The announcement is set for 10 a.m. at the Mint Museum in Uptown Charlotte.

Previously, an MLS spokesperson said no timeline had been finalized on an announcement about which city/proposal will be granted a team.

“Any announcement of a future MLS expansion club will take place in the city of the new team. A timeline to announce Major League Soccer’s 30th club has not been finalized," MLS Executive Vice President of Communications Dan Courtemanche said earlier.

Charlotte City Council members have reached a general consensus to provide public funding to renovate Bank of America stadium to equip it for an MLS team. But sources tell WBTV it is not a done deal and there are still significant aspects that need to be finalized.

Additionally, council has not voted publicly on the financing yet and sources tell WBTV there is not a set date yet for when that will happen, even though MLS plans to announce Charlotte as the newest team on Tuesday.

On November 21, Mayor Vi Lyles sent a letter to Major League Soccer Commissioner Don Garber welcoming MLS to the Queen City. She said the city was working with Tepper sports and their “plans together include”... “Modifications to Bank of America Stadium to support MLS and provide a world-class fan experience” and “$110 million in hospitality funds set aside to help ensure a successful venture over the next many years.”