Manchester City deny MLS franchise rumour

Man City bosses deny MLS link. Photo: PA

Manchester City have rejected speculation they are in discussions to buy a new MLS franchise.

City, who yesterday reported annual losses of £97.9million and increased turnover of £231.1million, were said to be on the brink of being awarded a franchise that would be based in the Queens district of New York.

It had been suggested David Beckham had been approached to be part of the scheme, which was to be named New York City Football Club and cost Blues owner Sheikh Mansour £100million.

However, Manchester City officials have today distanced themselves from the talk.

"Manchester City are not buying an MLS club," said City in the briefest of statements.

Sheikh Mansour has used his involvement with City, on which he has now lavished well in excess of £1billion, to raise the profile of Abu Dhabi.

It was suggested an involvement within the MLS would add to the work that has taken place turning City from a mid-ranking Premier League club into last season's champions.

A second MLS franchise in New York is set to be based in Queens, close to the site of Flushing Meadow, which currently hosts the US Open tennis tournament.