DAVID BECKHAM’s Inter Miami project hasn’t quite gone to plan – but at least they can guarantee some sun.
Their inaugural season as an MLS club ended up going out with a whimper with the club missing out on the 2020 playoffs..
It was hoped the arrival of former Manchester United team-mate Phil Neville as manager might improve things this term – but they are bottom of the Eastern Conference.
But it all started with bold ambitions.
At a press conference initially announcing the club, Becks made noises that he was regularly speaking to the world’s best talent to lure them to his project.
Olivier Giroud, who has just signed for AC Milan, was recently linked with a move to the club, and was reportedly offered a £4million apartment to live in.
While even Lionel Messi has hinted that he wants to play his final days in the US – with Miami favourites to land his signature.
So what can any prospective transfer targets expect from a life in Miami?
Join SunSport in lending the former Man United great a hand in making ‘The Magic City’ the go-to destination for the best footballers in the world.
While you may have to be wary of the odd tropical storm here and there, Miami weather is mostly perfect.
January averages around 20 degrees Celsius, while winter highs range between 23-27 degrees Celsius.
The wet season starts in May and ends mid-October, but the temperatures are between 27-35 degrees Celsius and it’s insanely humid.
Good job the football season starts in May, otherwise it would be hell playing in those conditions.
They say life’s a beach… Miami has several from Key Biscayne to North Beach, where prime athletes can bronze themselves on a daily basis.
There’s the 21st to 45th street beach, which runs alongside the Miami Beach boardwalk and South Pointe Park.
Some of the world’s best hotels and restaurants are nearby, so it’s the perfect spot.
Anyone feeling active could head to Lummus Beach where volleyball courts are available to rent or there’s thatched huts to lounge under.
Haulover Beach boasts white sands and a choppy sea, ideal for surfers.
On Tuesday nights there’s a food truck festival with live music and local foods for the whole family.
Miami’s cuisine is fit for a king and is influenced by the ocean with plenty of seafood on offer.
Latin American foods are key here, so most restaurants boast many Cuban-influenced dishes – most meaty based.
The most exclusive restaurants in town are Terrazza in the Shore Club Hotel, Zuma in the heart of downtown Miami and Jaya at the Setai Hotel.
Jaya is a favourite of the likes of Jay Z and Bono whenever they’re in town, with menu highlights including a whole branzino for a reasonable £27.
Terrazza’s Italian by-the pool fare will attract many footballers wanting to load up on carbs.
While Zuma’s light Japanese meals will have weight-conscious footballers frothing at the mouth.
Central to Beckham’s Miami franchise is a super stadium fit for the best players in the world.
The 18,000 all-seater arena is in the Overtown neighbourhood, near the Miami River, and was originally met with some controversy from the locals who didn’t think a stadium should be built on the site.
A world-class training centre sits next door to the stadium and boasts first class facilities.
However, be sure that it will be a state-of-the-art venue, not only fit for football, but ready to house concerts featuring the world’s leading pop stars.
Interestingly, it won’t be the biggest stadium in the country, but it’ll surely be a sellout week in/week out with Beckham involved.
THE CELEBRITY CULTURE
After all, this lot can’t be wrong.
The most famous faces in the world choose Miami as a holiday destination, pouring in on their private jets regularly during the summer.
Some celebrities even call Miami home, so any footballer who wants to embrace celebrity culture should look no further.
Anna Kournikova and Enrique Iglesias, Lenny Kravitz, Sean Combs, Matt Damon and Jennifer Lopez all have lavish homes in Miami.
Most opt for Star Island, so expect footballers to be checking out homes in that area.
With footballers making the crossover into movies and TV, major productions in the city are on the rise.
Could the team feature in The Rock’s show ‘Ballers’ in a future episode?
Anyone moving to Miami will have to be very aware of the sports culture that runs through the city’s veins.
Although the Miami Dolphins haven’t tasted Superbowl success since 1974, they’re steeped in NFL history thanks to legendary quarterback Dan Marino.
The NBA team Miami Heat was the one-time home of LeBron James when they picked up consecutive championships in 2012 and 2013.
They’re also represented in the MLB by the Marlins, who are co-owned by NY Yankee great Derek Jeter and have won two World Championships.
For shopping and dining, incoming footballers will look no further than taking a stroll along Bayside Marketplace.
Wrapping along the bay walls of the bank, it boasts designer shops, posh restaurants and a great vibe that encompasses all that’s great about Miami.
Incidentally, Miami Vice often filmed episodes here, so if it’s good enough for Don Johnson…
No doubt any big-name Beckham signing will be driving a fresh motor.
With that in mind, they’ll definitely want to cruise down Ocean Drive with its surrounding Art Deco hotels and bars.
The Clevelander Hotel, with its bar and massive swimming pool provide a great spot to grab a refresher in the hot heat.
You’ll be mad not to be impressed by the architecture.
It’s an amazing experience for any tourist and any future Beckham signing.
So, where do we sign up?
On the list of must-do things in Miami – and Becks doesn’t even need to sell the tourist haven – is the Everglades.
Unlike anything in the world, it’s your best chance of seeing a crocodile swimming in its natural habitat.
Over 1.5 acres long, the wetlands begin in Orlando at the Kissimmee River and end at Lake Okeechobee.