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Sacramento Republic owner Kevin Nagle vows to keep fighting for MLS expansion

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First reaction from Republic FC after Burkle’s departure.

Utah Jazz v Sacramento Kings Photo by Rocky Widner/NBAE via Getty Images

The news that Ron Burkle was officially pulling out as the majority investor in Sacramento’s MLS expansion team Friday was certainly a shock, and it appears it was at least somewhat unexpected within Sacramento Republic FC as well.

While the club has not released a statement as of publication on Friday evening, current club lead owner Kevin Nagle did make a statement on his Twitter account Friday in response to the bombshell news, which puts the club’s aspirations to go to MLS in major doubt.

It’s probably worth stepping back and explaining the ownership situation in some detail here for context. Nagle is currently the lead owner of Sac Republic. He is involved in helping to bring Republic FC to MLS, too, but the idea with Burkle was that Nagle would be a minority co-owner, alongside entertainment executive Matt Alvarez and possibly others, while Burkle would be the lead owner in MLS.

As a result, there’s been a bit of a split between the USL Championship-existing team operations and the future of the MLS effort. And now, with Burkle walking away, Sacramento are effectively back at the drawing board, unless there is another billionaire or group of very rich people waiting in the wings right this minute.

Is that backup plan there? That’s the many hundred million dollar question right now. We’ll see what happens.

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