Major League Soccer announced late Friday that Cleveland Browns owner Jimmy Haslam was part of a group that will purchase the Columbus Crew, keeping the team in the state capital.
Anthony Precourt, the current owner of the Crew, has been working with the league and the city of Austin, Texas to relocate the franchise. Precourt, unhappy with the current stadium situation in Columbus, is expected to still receive an MLS franchise in Austin.
“MLS is committed to keeping Crew SC in Columbus,” MLS announced, “should we continue to make progress on these critical components and agree to key terms with the investor group.”
Haslam is joined by a group of Columbus-area investors, led by Pete Edwards Jr.
Some reports indicate the Crew will retain their name, logo, colors, players, and team records.
The Crew currently play at Mapfre Stadium, near the Ohio State Fairgrounds in Columbus.
This is great news for the City of Columbus. As I have said repeatedly over the past year, the Crew SC belongs in Columbus. There are many details to work out, but I am grateful for the Columbus Partnership, Dee and Jimmy Haslam, Pete Edwards, Jr. and all of the loyal fans. pic.twitter.com/D01JNatd6G
— Mayor Andrew Ginther (@MayorGinther) October 12, 2018
A statement from Dee and Jimmy Haslam on the Columbus Crew: pic.twitter.com/tSovbEKZ8G
— Cleveland Browns (@Browns) October 12, 2018