Miami has proven success in hosting the highest level of international football competitions and the game has been instrumental in uniting the uniquely diverse community. Whether you speak Spanish, English, Portuguese, or Creole, in Miami, everyone agrees on their love of football, and celebrate its premier event: the FIFA World Cup™. Miami’s grassroots football starts with diverse youth programs, including: recreational, travel, and competitive academies. Virtually every public and private high school and middle school in Miami fields both boys’ and girls’ football teams. Grassroots programs continue with college football, which thrives here.
The Miami football community has NCAA Division I and II men’s and women’s teams. It also has NAIA teams, including both men’s and women’s as well. The adult football infrastructure in Miami includes every level of participation: amateur, semi-professional, as well as a truly rich history of professional football organizations that have participated in nearly every major professional league since the beginning of organized pro football in the United States. Professional football in Miami started with the North American Soccer League’s Miami Gatos in the late 1960s and early 1970s, then with the Miami Toros in the mid-1970s, continuing with the Fort Lauderdale Strikers in the late 1970s and early 1980s. In 1998, Major League Soccer (MLS) created the Miami Fusion but the team dissolved in 2002. Today, Inter Miami FC Currently, owned by David Beckham, competes in MLS.
The city has hosted some of the most spectacular international clubs and national team matches in the United States, including Santos of Brazil in the early 1970s. Since 1968, Miami has proudly hosted an amazing ten Super Bowls. Among many other marquee events, El Clasico, the International Champions Cup, Miami Open Tennis, Orange Bowl, BCS National Football Championship, NASCAR Ford Championship, NFL Pro Bowl, NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament and WrestleMania XXVIII have all enjoyed successful events in Miami. The city will host Super Bowl LIV in 2020, a record-setting 11th Super Bowl to mark the 100th anniversary of the NFL. The recent match between Real Madrid and Barcelona drew a sold-out crowd to Hard Rock Stadium. Miami hosted a post-FIFA World Cup™ match between the national teams from Brazil and Colombia, which sold out at 73,429 fans.