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What MLS coming to Cincinnati means for Columbus

Columbus Crew SC scoreboard file photo.jpg
FC Cincinnati fans, along with political, business and community leaders, packed inside a sweltering Rhinegeist Brewery for the announcement the team was joining Major League Soccer. (WSYX/WTTE)

CINCINNATI, Ohio (WSYX/WTTE) -- FC Cincinnati fans, along with political, business and community leaders, packed inside a sweltering Rhinegeist Brewery for the announcement the team was joining Major League Soccer.

"It's my great pleasure to announce that Cincinnati, Ohio, is officially granted the newest expansion club in Major League Soccer," MLS commissioner Don Garber.

The announcement means Ohio now has two cities with MLS teams.

"This is the culmination of almost a lifelong dream," said one FC Cincinnati fan.

The arrival of Major League Soccer to Cincinnati comes at a time when Columbus could lose Crew SC potentially to Austin, Texas.

ABC 6/FOX 28 reporter Bryant Maddrick traveled to Cincinnati for Tuesday's announcement and asked MLS commissioner Don Garber if Cincinnati's gain of a pro team comes at Columbus' loss.

"No, absolutely not. There are decisions that are absolutely independent of each other and no league wants to or likes moving professional sports teams. We're going to work to see if there's a solution there," said Garber.

One solution state and Columbus officials believe they have is legal action. A joint lawsuit has been filed against MLS and Crew SC owners Precourt Sports Ventures in an effort to keep the team in the capital city.

It's a lawsuit Garber believes has no merit. But he does see merit in the Queen City.

"Seeing the success in Cincinnati, we hope to see that success in Columbus and we haven't."

One excited fan of FC Cincinnati is hoping Crew SC stays in Columbus for the creation of an in-state rivalry.

"We want you as our chief rival. We want you to be where you are in Columbus so we can go to your place and you can come to our place and we can have a party and a battle and then a party."

FC Cincinnati will begin playing in 2019.

Meanwhile, Crew SC is among the league's best this season. The team hasn't lost a match since April 14th.

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