Foley builds Las Vegas soccer community links with Bournemouth hook-up

February 10 – AFC Bournemouth owner Bill Foley, who is building a portfolio of club ownerships worldwide, has stayed closer to home and focussed on community with his latest club involvement.

Foley owns the Golden Knights, the Las Vegas ice hockey team that won the Stanley Cup last season, and has a home base in Las Vegas.

He has now connected his Premier League club with Downtown Las Vegas Soccer Club, a local non-profit youth football organisation in the city.

Foley has in the past been rumoured to be looking at bringing an MLS team to Las Vegas. Certainly it is a market that the MLS want to be in, particularly as Las Vegas rapidly pivots towards being a major sports city.

While Foley said he had considered a Vegas franchise, he also said he felt that the cost of bringing a team to Vegas was prohibitively high. Franchise fees are currently at about $300 million while the cost of building a soccer-specific stadium could push the funding requirement toa billion dollars before you even have a team”.

Unless there was significant city support.

Foley has taken a different approach with soccer in the city with a grassroots hook-up, but ruling him out of any MLS franchise play might be premature. After all, this is `America and the sports business here moves considerably faster than anywhere else in the world.

Through the grassroots partnership, AFC Bournemouth will provide coaching education to the Vegas club’s staff and host a clinic for local players this summer, while having a visible presence within the DLVSC organisation and at its events.

“I’m excited to forge this connection between AFC Bournemouth and the City of Las Vegas that means so much to my family and myself,” Foley said.

“This fits our commitment to supporting youth sports as we have done with football in the Bournemouth area and hockey with the Vegas Golden Knights. It is a partnership that provides the Downtown Las Vegas Soccer Club coaches access to some of the top minds in the game and a professional club for its players to root on and aspire to play for someday.”

Strong professional football clubs are built on solid community and financial foundations. Foley has the money and is now gently involving his assets in community.

Foley has expanded his football team ownerships with the acquisition of a new Australian A-League franchise in Wellington, New Zealand, and has taken minority stakes in Ligue1’s Lorient and Hibernian in Scotland. A characteristic of each investment is a belief that the local community is hungry for a successful team and that the club structure has the capacity to build.

Gary Soresman, DLVSC Executive Director. “As a club that has long had a sense of pride in being a community-based organisation with decisions made in the best interest of our players, this feels like a great fit. We look forward to what lies ahead and the continued growth of this incredible game with the AFC Bournemouth team.”

Contact the writer of this story, Harry Ewing, at moc.l1721493103labto1721493103ofdlr1721493103owedi1721493103sni@g1721493103niwe.1721493103yrrah1721493103. Additional reporting by moc.l1721493103labto1721493103ofdlr1721493103owedi1721493103sni@n1721493103osloh1721493103cin.l1721493103uap1721493103