Associated Press Soccer icon David Beckham and Miami-based cellphone mogul Marcelo Claure remain in serious discussions about bringing a Major League Soccer franchise to Miami, but nothing has been finalized, the stadium issue is still a question mark, and another interested ownership group emerged this week. According to a source with knowledge of Claure’s negotiations with Beckham, the two parties met in Japan last week and plan to meet again in the next few weeks in Los Angeles. Talks are “progressing nicely, but not a done deal yet,” said the source. Beckham retired from MLS last spring, and as part of his contract with the league, he has an option to buy a franchise for a sharply discounted price believed to be $25 million. He has said he plans to exercise that option, and Miami is his top choice. The option expires in December, so he would have to decide before then. He toured Miami in June with Claure, the Bolivia-born owner of Brightstar Corporation, and visited Sun Life Stadium and FIU Stadium, though neither of those is ideal, according to MLS sources. The league is looking for an intimate soccer-specific stadium, if possible. Dolphins owner Stephen Ross has also expressed interest in bringing MLS to South Florida. Meanwhile, a London-based investment group led by Italian financier Alessandro Butini made its pitch for MLS-to-Miami official on Tuesday, partnering with the University of Miami School of Architecture to develop ideas for a viable soccer-specific stadium, and launching a website — MIA4MLS.com — to drum up fan interest.
• Belgian teenager Adnan Januzaj scored twice in his first start for host Manchester United, rallying the Red Devils to a 2-1 win at last-place Sunderland 2-1 that avoided their first three-game Premier League losing streak since December 2001.