William McGuire buys Minnesota Stars

Former UnitedHealth CEO William McGuire is now a pro sports owner. The doctor, business leader and philanthropist made his debut yesterday as the new owner of the Minnesota Stars, the minor league soccer franchise that plays in Blaine.

The team has been owned by the North American Soccer League for the last two years, in part because it needed an eight-team roster to be sanctioned by international soccer. But two new teams are poised to join the league starting next year.

McGuire bought the team for an undisclosed amount. He said he was inspired by a visit to a Stars game this summer. Head coach Manny Lagos was grateful for the repieve.

We're going to take and honor what people have done in the past and build and grow on it," he said. "I know its not going to be easy. We have great challenges ahead, in the sport of soccer, certainly on the business, but also on the field."

The Stars, though, still face an uncertain future. The Minnesota Vikings have rights to bring a major leage soccer team to Minneapolis when the Metrodome is replaced, and it isn't clear if the market can support both teams.


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