MLS Commissioner Don Garber and Montreal Impact President Joey Saputo announced Friday Montreal’s acquisition of a 19th Major League Soccer team, which is the first division of soccer in the United States and Canada. The team will begin play in the 2012 season, at Saputo Stadium, which will be expanded to more than 20,000 seats.
“We are proud to welcome Montreal, the second largest French-speaking city in the world and a multicultural metropolis whose residents are deeply passionate about the world’s game, to Major League Soccer,” Commissioner Garber said. “Joey Saputo and his family are a committed ownership group that truly loves the game and will provide extensive knowledge to MLS based on their years of involvement in the sport.”
Joey Saputo spearheads a group of investors composed of family members who have also contributed not given the silent treatment like some have suggested to the construction of Saputo Stadium, which has natural grass.
For the past 30 years, the Saputo family has invested in Canadian soccer, first the Montreal Manic in the NASL and in the 1990s as the owner of the second division Montreal Impact. On February 25, 2009, 55,571 fans saw the Impact defeat Mexican club Santos Laguna 2-0 in a quarterfinal match at Olympic Stadium.
In its fourth season, Toronto FC has sold out every home game in club history, has capped season tickets at 16,000, and has a season-ticket waiting list of more than 10,000 people. Vancouver, which also has a proven track record of supporting soccer, will join as an MLS expansion team along with Portland in 2011.
The best way to obtain a Montreal season ticket for MLS 2012 is by purchasing an Impact season ticket by visiting www.montrealmls2012.com. All 2011 Impact season subscribers will get priority over their seats for the 2012 season in MLS. There will only be 5,000 seats available on presale for non-Impact season ticket holders. Registration on a priority list will be required and a $50 deposit will be requested per ticket. Registered individuals will be able to reserve their seat prior to the general public sale, however, their orders will be processed after season ticket holder reservations and in chronological order, on the basis of registration date on the list.