NYCFC, Islanders keen on Belmont Park site for new stadium – report

Major League Soccer franchise New York City FC is reportedly set to battle it out with NHL ice hockey team the New York Islanders for the right to build a new stadium on the site of the Belmont Park horse-racing facility in Elmont, Long Island.

NYCFC has played its home matches at Yankee Stadium (pictured), home of Major League Baseball team the New York Yankees, since it joined MLS in 2015. So far the team has been unsuccessful in finding its own home.

The Islanders’ future at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, meanwhile, remains up in the air after reports emerged earlier this year that the arena had opted to end its association with the team.

The Islanders moved to the Barclays Center in 2015 having spent more than 30 years at the Nassau Coliseum in Long Island. The team is said to favour a move back to Long Island.

The New York Post newspaper, citing sources familiar with the matter, said that both NYCFC and the Islanders are readying bids to build a ground on the Belmont Park site.

The Post said that NYCFC would work with developer Related Co. on its project, while the Islanders would join forces with Sterling Project Development and Oak View Group. The report added that the teams are seeking to build a stadium where underused parking lots are currently located adjacent to the Belmont Park racetrack.

On Saturday, NYCFC was forced to play a home game at the Pratt & Whitney Stadium in Connecticut, some 110 miles from Yankee Stadium, after a Yankees match had to be rescheduled. The three-day turnaround period between soccer and baseball fixtures left NYCFC with no option but to play its match against Houston Dynamo elsewhere. The game finished 1-1.

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