Major League Soccer team D.C. United is close to finalizing a sponsorship deal with casino giant Caesars Entertainment Corp. that could, among other things, include the addition of a sportsbook at Audi Field.
Reports about a potential partnership between the soccer club and the Las Vegas-headquartered casino operator first emerged last November.
A spokesperson for D.C. United told the Washington Business Journal in an emailed statement that the team and Caesars were in the final stages of forging a partnership but declined to provide further details about the deal.
Speculations about the scope of a potential tie-up intensified after MLS unveiled the new jersey designs for 25 of its 26 franchises just over three weeks ahead of the start of the new season. The new D.C. United kits include a sleeve ad that shows a laurel wreath that looks just like the one in Caesars’ logo. The ad also reads ‘Caesars Sports’.
It should also be noted that D.C. United confirmed their kit branding deal with the major casino company in a Thursday post on their Facebook page.
Including D.C. United, four MLS franchises have now secured sleeve sponsorship deals for the upcoming season, which is scheduled to kick off on February 29.
Partnership Could Include Sportsbook at Audi Field
Sources familiar with the ongoing talks between Caesars and D.C. United said back in November that the partnership between the gambling operator and the MLS club would also include the addition of a Caesars-operated sports betting facility at Audi Field.
The 20,000-capacity stadium is located in Southwest Washington and has been hosting D.C. United’s home games since its opening in the summer of 2018.
It is still unknown whether the sportsbook would occupy existing space at the venue or would be part of new construction at the site. Late last year, contractors worked on scheduled upgrades and other renovations at the soccer-specific arena and some suggested that the betting facility was part of those upgrades.
According to sources, the sportsbook would also include a restaurant and a bar and would look more like “a beer garden of the future” than what bettors are usually welcomed to in traditional sports betting facilities.
While the partnership between Caesars and the soccer team is yet to be announced, signs that an announcement would pop any moment now are all around.
Back in November, Caesars Executive VP for Communications and Government Relations Richard Broome said that thy were interested in a partnership with D.C. United, but weren’t there yet. D.C. United Chief Business Officer Andy Bush said back then that they were “absolutely excited” about the opportunity to partner with Caesars and that such a partnership would be “an incredible opportunity to engage with our fans.”