Report: FC Cincinnati to join USL in 2016, hire Harkes as head coach

Report: FC Cincinnati to join USL in 2016, hire Harkes as head coach

USL

Report: FC Cincinnati to join USL in 2016, hire Harkes as head coach

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By DAN KARELL

After months of rumors, professional soccer looks set to be returning to Cincinnati.

Calling themselves FC Cincinnati, the club released a promotional trailer on Youtube on Tuesday morning, with the team allegedly set to join USL and have former U.S. Men’s National Team midfielder John Harkes as the team’s head coach. Cincinnati’s NPR station, WVXU, was the first to report the story on Tuesday.

USL declined to comment on the video.

FC Cincinnati currently has a website and a Twitter account, though nothing has been posted on either site. The color scheme from the Twitter account shows an orange and blue scheme with a crest in the shape of a shield, with a Dutch Lion at the bottom.

Cincinnati is currently home to the Cincinnati Saints NPSL team and has had a number of other soccer teams in the Southwest Ohio, Northern Kentucky area, including the USL PDL Cincinnati Kings and the Cincinnati Exile from the American Indoor Soccer League.

WVXU is reporting that a formal announcement is expected on Wednesday and that the Lindner Family, which once owned the Chiquita brand and the Cincinnati Reds, will own the team. The report states that former Cincinnati Bengals executive and former city councilman Jeff Berding will be FC Cincinnati’s president and general manager.

Local Cincinnati blogger Wrong Side of the Pond broke the story that USL was coming to Cincinnati last May.

Outside of the Columbus Crew based in the center of the state, professional and semi-pro soccer has struggled to gain a foothold in Ohio, with PDL teams in Cincinnati and Cleveland folding and the Dayton Dutch Lions leaving USL Pro after the 2014 season.

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What do you think of this news? Excited to see professional soccer come to Cincinnati? Do you believe there is a market for a local team?

Share your thoughts below.

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