Inter Miami CF Enters Into Agreement with KIN

KIN Partners will be the exclusive sponsorship sales representation agency.

Miami, FL (Tuesday, February 5, 2019) by Kenneth Russo –

Club Internacional de Fútbol Miami (“Inter Miami CF”) continues to make impressive steps in its development, now with slightly more than one year before it kicks off play in North America’s Major League Soccer.

The club announced on February 1, 2019, that it has entered into a contract with the London-based firm, which is headed up by industry veterans Simon Oliveira and Matthew Kay, KIN recently expanded into Miami and Oliveira, the Managing Director of KIN, has previously worked on Beckham’s other business projects. Among KIN’s roster of international clients is Neymar, Jr.

KIN’s role will be to identify and develop sponsorship opportunities for the expansion club.

“Miami is recognised as a global city with a mix of wonderful cultures and we cannot wait to start working with both the vastly impressive ownership group and one of the most exciting properties in world sports today,” said Matthew Kay.

The announcement comes within days after Inter Miami put forward plans to build a training facility, including a multi-purpose stadium, on the site of the Lockhart Stadium, previously used by the now defunct North American Soccer League’s (NASL) Fort Lauderdale Strikers.

Given the transformational aspect of Miami Freedom Park, partnering with an international agency appears to be a smart move. Interest in Inter Miami CF has been high, and the home of the team, in addition to a 25,000 seat stadium, a public park and public soccer fields, will feature hotel, entertainment and retail space as well as a technology hub. It is a US$1 billion complex that will create thousands of jobs and generate millions of dollars in tax revenue to the city, county, state and school board.

© 2019 Russo Law & Soccer

Inter Miami CF celebrates its 1st birthday! A year of firsts. ¡Inter Miami CF celebra su primer cumpleaños! Un año de novedades.

Miami, FL (Tuesday, January 29, 2019) by Kenneth Russo –

Happy Birthday Club Internacional de Fútbol Miami! January 29, 2018. It has been one year. One year since David Beckham took the stage at the Knight Concert Hall at the Adrienne Arsht Center and delivered a famous speech in which he recounted how his academy coach once told him “You’ll never make it as a footballer.” “I never quit,” was Beckham’s reply. One year since Marcelo Claure also gave a speech recounting the story of the more than four years between the original announcement on February 5, 2014, during which he and David Beckham tried unsuccessfully to secure a stadium site and to find suitable investors in order to be able to launch the Miami Major League Soccer Club. About how he and David had concluded that the dream was “too big” and against their wishes, had decided to move on. One year since Jorge Mas gave an emotionally charged speech in which he told the story of how he had been contacted by MLS Commissioner Donald Garber, who asked him if he would be interested in co-investing and helping David Beckham get the Miami franchise off the ground, and what Miami has meant to his family and those of people who come here from other places to make a better life.

Between January 29, 2018 and September 5th, the club used the name “Fútbol Miami” as a placeholder while deciding on the actual name, colours and logo. We knew the owners were getting closer, and during the summer several potential team names appeared in trademark searches online at the USPTO. These names, trademarks by lawyers at the direction of companies connected to Miami Beckham United, LLC, included many outstanding names including Club Atlético Miami, Miami Mundial Club de Fútbol, and others. See USPTO Search. 

One of the biggest highlights of the year came before daybreak on Wednesday, September 5, 2018. In the predawn hours, a giant mural painted by local artist Alejandro Mijares was revealed on the walls of a building at the corner of SW 8th Street and SW 1st Avenue in the Brickell neighbourhood of downtown Miami, revealing the club’s name and badge.

The Wall of Club Internacional de Fútbol Miami in Brickell.

At the same time, the team had the front and back covers of the Miami Herald and El Nuevo Herald wrapped in pink with the team’s logo and explanations about the symbology. Mijares also painted the newly revealed logo on a wall in the Wynwood neighbourhood.

The morning papers on Sep. 5, 2018
Logo painted on a wall in Wynwood.

In the months since then, the club had many firsts. Soon after, plans were announced to redevelop Melreese Golf Course into the future home of Inter Miami CF and Miami Freedom Park. In July, we endured two full days of hearings before the City of Miami Commissioners, in a the effort by Miami Freedom Park, LLC to have a measure placed on the ballot to allow residents of the City of Miami to decide whether the City should negotiate to enter into a long-term lease of city-owned land at the Melreese Golf Course. In the end, three out of five commissioners approved.

On November 6, 2018, the club celebrated its biggest victory to date: the measure to transform Melreese Golf Course into a world-class stadium and Miami’s largest park, along with 23 acres of public soccer fields, an office/hotel complex with technology jobs and entertainment area passed with a strong majority of voters saying “Yes on 378.” “We won tonight!” are the now famous words of Jorge Mas.

It was also a year when the club made its initial moves on the soccer operations and business sides of the front office. Paul McDonough was the first staff member to be hired when he was appointed to the post of Sporting Director in August, just a few weeks before the unveiling of the club´s name and badge. A short time later, on September 20, 2019, Jurgen Mainka, who had previously worked at Concacaf and other MLS Clubs, was named as the club’s first Chief Business Officer. In October, the club named Dennis Sprenkle as the head of HR and Administration. At the beginning of January, 2019, Kurt Schmid joined as the first Technical Director, followed by Niki Budalic as the first Director of Soccer Operations. In the last couple of weeks prior to the one year anniversary, the club began laying the foundation of its Academy, adding Victor Pastora and Juan Carlos Michia, both of whom had been key figures in the famed Weston Football Club youth academy program.

Indeed, it was a year of many firsts. What lies ahead for Club Internacional de Fútbol Miami? A look at this video tells us: “Wait, that was just the beginning. We’re not done. Not by a long way.” It is going to be an exciting 2019.

© 2019 Russo Law & Soccer

What is a Homegrown Player?

Miami, FL (Monday, January 21, 2019) –  

The Homegrown Player rule is one of several manners for a Major League Soccer club to acquire players. But how does it work?

Follow this link where I explain this mechanism in detail. Continue reading What is a Homegrown Player?

Un futbolista mexicano más jugando en Europa: Traspaso del joven Diego Lainez al Real Betis desde América CF | ES/EN

El joven jugador mexicano se va a los Béticos con la transferencia más cara entre mexicanos que emigran a Europa.

Miami, FL (jueves, 10 de enero de 2019) – Kenneth Russo

El Real Betis Balompié y el América CF recientemente han concluido una transferencia más cara del jugador Diego Lainez, quien firmó un contrato de 5 años con los verdiblancos. Su contrato termina el 30 de junio de 2024 y fue condicionado por la aprobación del preceptivo reconocimiento médico.

Lainez será compañero de su compatriota Andrés Guardado, uno de los capitanes y referentes del Real Bétis.

Diego Lainez Leyva fue nacido en Villahermosa, Tabasco, México el 9/6/2000. Se ha formado en las categorías inferiores del Club América, y, escalando en los escalafones inferiores del equipo, debutó con el primer equipo de las Aguilas en 2017 a la edad de sólidamente 16 años.

Lainez ha sido internacional con México en las categorías sub-17, sub-20 y sub-21. En 2018, hizo su debut con la selección nacional, con el que ha disputado dos encuentros.

El Betis pagó alrededor de 14 millones de euros ($17 M USD). Con esta figura Bétis se hace 80% de la carta del joven mexicano, mientras que America recibirá el otro 20 % en caso de una transferencia del futbolista en el futuro.

Este cifra supone el récord como la mayor cantidad desembolsada por un equipo europeo para tener a un futbolista mexicano en su primera transferencia profesional hacia el Viejo Continente.

Lainez, con 18 años, jugó 50 partidos para Club America y anotó 5 goles. Con este fichaje, los Béticos adquiere un futbolista con velocidad y dribbling y los técnicos del Betis cree muchísimo en su potencial y alta calidad técnica. Se juegue en el extremo izquierdo pero jugar también por el derecho y medio centro ofensivo.

https://twitter.com/realbetis/status/1083486717741621248?s=12

Diego Lainez’ message to Betis fans

Real Betis Balompié and América Club de Fútbol recently concluded a record transfer of Diego Lainez, who signed a 5-year contract with the Green and Whites. His contract runs until June 30, 2024 and was conditioned on passing the appropriate medical test.

Lainez will be a teammate of fellow countryman Andres Guardado. a captain and one of the outstanding players on Real Betis.

Diego Lainez Leyva was born in Villahermosa, Tabasco, Mexico on June 6, 2000 was raised as a player in the academy at Club América. Rising through the ranks of the lower teams, he made his debut for the Eagles’ senior team in 2017, at only age 16.

Lainez has been capped with Mexico’s U17, U20 and U21 teams. In 2018, he made his debut with the senior national team, and has won two caps.

Betis paid around 14 million Euros ($17 million USD). They will hold 80 % of the card, while Club America will retain 20 % in the event of any future transfer of the footballer.

This signing marks a new record as the highest amount ever spent by a European club for a Mexican player in his first transfer from Mexico to the Old Continent.

Lainez, 18 years old, has played in 50 games for Club America and scored 5 goals. With this signing, Real Betis acquires a player with speed and dribbling and the technical staff at Betis believes in his huge potential and great technical ability. He is a forward who plays on the wide left but can play on the right side or in an attacking midfield role.

Continue reading Un futbolista mexicano más jugando en Europa: Traspaso del joven Diego Lainez al Real Betis desde América CF | ES/EN

¡Fichado! 19-year-old French “wonderkid” Signs on a free transfer from Toulouse FC

Miami, FL (Wednesday, January 9, 2019) by Kenneth Russo – 

He has the name that just sounds like a big-time player for Les Bleus. The quintessential compound first name.

Jean-Clair Todibo. And now ‘J-C’ Todibo has a big-time fútbol club to complement that classic name. He will join the Blaugrana when his contract with Toulouse Football Club expires on June 30, 2019.

Jean-Clair Todibo. You could not be blamed for asking “who?” Likewise, you may be asking yourself whether I have spent too much time with Football Manager 2019. Not so. Who?

The 19 year-old, right-footed, centre-back, born in Cayenne, French Guyana, is seen as one of the rising stars of French football. He has been capped twice for France’s U20 team. He has a market value of €8 million according to website Transfermarkt.com. Juventus was also in hot pursuit of Todibo’s services. He is described as a player who has a strong physical presence who can also play in midfield. Barcelona believe Todibo can serve as an alternative to Samuel Umtiti and Thomas Vermaelen, both of whom have struggled with fitness problems during their times at the Camp Nou. For his part, the young player explains that he is inspired and models his style after players like Andrea Pirlo in midfield and Thiago Silva on defense.

How rapidly has Jean-Clair Todibo arrived in the spotlight? Consider these facts: Todibo had not played a professional match prior to the beginning of the 2018-19 season, yet within the first few matches he rapidly established himself as a key figure for Toulouse. He played his first match in Ligue 1 on August 19, 2018, against Girondins de Bordeaux. His first professional goal came in September – a late equaliser against Rennes that showcased his importance to the side. He celebrated his 19th birthday on December 30, and has played a total of 10 matches for the Pink City club, 836 minutes of playing time. His last appearance for Toulouse was November 3rd away to Strasbourg.

Todibo joined Toulouse Football Club’s U19 team on July 1, 2016, having been trained at Football Club Les Lilas, a club in the eastern Paris banlieu of Les Lilas, Seine-Saint-Denis. (Link: Players who have been trained at FC Les Lilas) One year later in 2017 he was already promoted to the Toulouse B squad.

El jugador francés, procedente del Toulouse sin costo de traspaso, será nuevo jugador del FC Barcelona a partir del 1 de julio de 2019

The President of Toulouse, Olivier Sadran, was furious at the signing, saying the player had been “ill-advised” and disparaging Barcelona, added: “It is not very glorious coming from a big club, even if they legally have the right to. We also have our share of responsibility.” The best translation of this is that the Toulouse President is counting the Euros the club will not receive from Barça. Toulouse had tried to sign Todibo to a new contract, but talks broke down in November. Today, Sadran said in an interview with French sports daily L’Equipe that the deal is not complete. « Si vous m’appelez pour me demander si Todibo est à Barcelone et si je l’ai libéré, la réponse est non » (“If you call me and ask if Todibo is in Barcelona and if I have released him, the answer is no.”)

Barcelona was able to sign Todibo on what is commonly referred to as a “Bosman” signing, which takes its name from the famous Bosman ruling. Pursuant to Bosman, a player can now agree to a “pre-contract” with another club for a free transfer if the player’s contract with his existing club has six months or less remaining. The existing club does not receive a fee. As of January 1, 2019, the young centre-back was thus legally free to sign with a new team. Barcelona acted swiftly in presenting its offer to Todibo and his agent, BS & Partners.

Of course, nothing can guarantee that he will be the superstar envisioned. But given Barcelona and Juventus were in competition for his services, with Real Madrid reportedly also interested, it speaks to their belief in Todibo’s potential. Time will tell. You may not have heard the last of this name.

Más Información:

Enlaces aquí / Links here:

El nuevo fichaje de FC Barcelona para 2019-20

Las once cosas que debes saber sobre Todibo / 11 things you need to know about Todibo

“Estoy muy feliz haber firmado con Barcelona.”

Todibo was pleased to be moving on to Barcelona. Here’s what he had to say:

« Je suis très heureux de m’être engagé avec le FC Barcelone à partir de juillet 2019. C’est plus qu’un club et je les remercie de leur confiance. C’est sera un nouvel étape dans ma jeune carrière et je mettrai toute ma détermination pour y réussir de grandes choses. En attendant, je reste un joueur du Toulouse FC et je suis disponible pour aider mes partenaires tant que je reste sous contrat. Le Tef m’a permit de grandir et de découvrir la Ligue 1 et je leur en serai éternellement reconnaissant. Merci. »

” Estoy muy feliz de haber firmado con el FC Barcelona a partir de julio 2019. Es más que un club y les agradezco su confianza. Será una nueva etapa en este inicio de mi carera y voy a poner todo de mi parte para conseguir grandes cosas. En este momento soy jugador de Toulouse FC y estoy disponible para ayudar a mis compañeros todo el tiempo que me queda en este club. El Tef me permitió crecer y descubrir la Ligue 1 y siempre estaré agradecido. Gracias.”

Niki Budalic Named First Director of Soccer Operations for Club Internacional de Fútbol Miami – EN|ES|PT|FR

Miami, FL (Monday, January 7, 2019) by Kenneth Russo –

The making of the front office of Club Internacional de Fútbol Miami continued as the club announced today that Niki Budalic will join as the club’s first Director of Soccer Operations. Budalic, a Canadian citizen, will join the Inter Miami CF staff pending approval of his U.S. work permit.

Budalic’s role will be to manage and oversee all soccer operations. He will report directly to Sporting Director Paul McDonough and will work alongside Technical Director Kurt Schmid.

Sporting Director Paul McDonough was pleased to welcome Budalic, stating. “We want to welcome Niki to the Inter Miami family. Niki’s experience working alongside players and coaches at all levels will be an important addition to our technical staff, and one that will allow us to create an environment that cultivates success.”

Niki Budalic’s experience includes 3 years with Orlando City SC, where he served as General Manager of Soccer Operations for both Orlando City (MLS) and the Orlando Pride (NWSL). He joined Orlando City in January 2016 as Assistant General Manager and was promoted in December 2016.

Niki’s career has also included serving as Director of Soccer Operations for Kitchener-Waterloo United in the Premier Development League and leading the club to the 2015 national championship. He was also the Director of Football, North America, for Beswicks Sports.

Prior to working in soccer management, Niki was a professional player for various clubs in North America and Europe, including the Montreal Impact, Toronto Lynx, FK Haugesund in Norway, and Örebro SK in Sweden. Niki’s extensive soccer profile includes working in player representation, scouting, recruitment, consulting and coaching for both men’s and women’s soccer.

Niki holds a Master’s of Business Administration from Wilfrid Laurier University in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada.

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Club Internacional de Fútbol Miami Nombró a Niki Budalic Su Primer Director de Operaciones de Fútbol

Miami, FL (lunes 7 de enero, 2019) – por Kenneth Russo –

La estructuración de la gerencia del Club Internacional de Fútbol Miami continuó hoy cuando el club anunció que Niki Budalic se unirá como Directora de Operaciones de Fútbol del club. Budalic, un ciudadano canadiense, se unirá al personal del Inter Miami CF a la espera de la aprobación de su permiso de trabajo de los EE. UU.

En su rol con el club, Niki reportará directamente al Director Deportivo, Paul McDonough y trabajará junto con el Director Técnico Kurt Schmid en todos los aspectos de las operaciones de fútbol.

El Director Deportivo Paul McDonough tuvo el placer de dar la bienvenida a Budalic. “Queremos dar la bienvenida la más cordial a Niki a la familia del Inter Miami. La experiencia que Niki trae consigo gracias a sus años de trabajo con jugadores y entrenadores en todos los niveles, complementará de sobremanera a nuestro cuerpo técnico y también nos ayudará a crear una cultura de éxito en el club.”

La experiencia de Niki Budalic incluye 3 años con Orlando City SC, donde se desempeñó como Gerente General de Operaciones de Fútbol para Orlando City (MLS) y Orlando Pride (NWSL). Sus años en Orlando inició unió en enero de 2016 como Gerente General Adjunto y fue promovido en diciembre de 2016, después de solamente once meses.

Niki también se desempeñó como Director de Operaciones para el equipo del Kitchener-Waterloo United (Ontario) de la PDL, al cual llevó al campeonato nacional en el 2015. También fue el Director de Fútbol (América del Norte) para Beswicks Sports.

Antes de trabajar en la gestión del fútbol, Niki fue jugador profesional para varios clubes en América del Norte y Europa, incluyendo el Montreal Impact, Toronto Lynx, FK Haugesund en Noruega y Örebro SK en Suecia. El perfil extenso de Niki incluye experiencia más allá de la cancha, y toca aspectos de la industria como la visoria y el reclutamiento de talento, representación de jugadores, consultoría, dirección técnica y entrenamiento tanto para hombres como para mujeres.

Niki tiene una Maestría en Administración de Negocios (MBA) de la Universidad Wilfrid Laurier en Waterloo, Ontario, Canadá.

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Club Internacional de Fútbol Miami Nomeou Niki Budalic Seu Primeiro Diretor de Operações de Futebol

Miami, FL (segunda-feira, 7 de janeiro, 2019) – Kenneth Russo –

A criação da gerência do Club Internacional de Fútbol Miami continuou hoje quando o clube anunciou que Niki Budalic se unirá ao clube como seu Diretor de Operações de Futebol. Budalic, um cidadão canadense, se juntará ao time Inter Miami CF, aguardando a aprovação de sua permissão de trabalho dos EUA.

Em seu papel no clube, Niki se reportará diretamente ao Diretor Esportivo, Paul McDonough, e trabalhará com o Diretor Técnico Kurt Schmid em todos os aspectos das operações de futebol.

O Diretor Esportivo Paul McDonough teve o prazer de receber Budalic. “Queremos dar as boas-vindas a Niki para a família Inter Miami. A experiência que Niki traz com seus anos de trabalho com jogadores e treinadores em todos os níveis, vai complementar muito a nossa equipe de treinadores e também nos ajudará a criar uma cultura de sucesso no clube “.

A experiência de Niki Budalic inclui 3 anos com Orlando City SC, onde atuou como Gerente Geral de Operações de Futebol de Orlando City (MLS) e Orlando Pride (NWSL). Seus anos em Orlando começaram em janeiro de 2016 como Vice-Gerente Geral e foi promovido em dezembro de 2016, após apenas onze meses.

Niki também atuou como Diretor de Operações da equipe Kitchener-Waterloo United (Ontario) do PDL, que liderou o campeonato nacional em 2015. Ele também foi Diretor de Futebol (América do Norte) para Beswicks Sports.

Antes de trabalhar na gestão de futebol, Niki foi jogador profissional de vários clubes na América do Norte e Europa, incluindo Montreal Impact, Toronto Lynx, FK Haugesund na Noruega e Örebro SK na Suécia. O extenso perfil de Niki inclui experiência além do campo e aborda aspectos da indústria como recrutador de talentos, representação de jogadores, consultoria, direção técnica e treinamento para homens e mulheres.

Niki possui um Mestrado em Administração de Negócios (MBA) pela Wilfrid Laurier University em Waterloo, Ontário, Canadá.

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Club Internacional de Fútbol Miami A Nommé Niki Budalic Premier Directeur des Operations de Football.

Miami, FL (lundi, le 7 janvier 2019) – Kenneth Russo –

L’assemblage de l’équipe de management du Club Internacional de Fútbol Miami a continué d’évoluer aujourd’hui quand le club a annoncé que Niki Budalic se joindra comme le Directeur des Opérations de Football. Budalic, un citoyen canadien, rejoindra le personnel de Inter Miami CF en attendant l’approbation de son permis de travail américain.

Budalic aura pour rôle de gérer et de superviser toutes les opérations de football. Il relèvera directement du Directeur Sportif, Paul McDonough, et travaillera aux côtés du nouveau Directeur Technique, Kurt Schmid.

Le Directeur Sportif Paul McDonough a eu le plaisir d’accueillir Budalic. «Nous souhaitons la bienvenue à Niki dans la famille Inter Miami. L’expérience de Niki auprès des joueurs et des entraîneurs à tous les niveaux constituera un atout important pour notre personnel technique et nous permettra de créer une culture du succès.»

L’expérience de Niki Budalic comprend 3 années passées à Orlando City SC, où il a été Directeur Général des Opérations de Football pour Orlando City (MLS) et Orlando Pride (NWSL). Il a rejoint Orlando City en janvier 2016 en tant que Directeur Général Adjoint et a été promu en décembre 2016, seulement quelques mois après son arrivée.

La carrière de Niki a également a comporté le rôle du Directeur des Opérations de Football pour l’équipe Kitchener-Waterloo United de la Premier Development League où il a mené le club au championnat national en 2015. Il a également été Directeur du Football pour l’Amérique du Nord avec Beswicks Sports.

Avant de travailler dans la gestion du football, Niki était un joueur professionnel pour plusieurs clubs en Amérique du Nord et en Europe, notamment l’Impact de Montréal, le Lynx de Toronto, le FK Haugesund en Norvège et le Örebro SK en Suède. Le profil étendu de Niki dans le football inclut des activités dans la représentation des joueurs, le dépistage et recrutement des joueurs, la consultation et l’entraînement pour le football masculin et féminin.

Niki est titulaire d’une Maîtrise en Administration des Affaires (MBA) de l’Université Wilfrid Laurier de Waterloo, en Ontario, au Canada.