FC Cincinnati attorneys busy trying to finalize contract with Major League Soccer

Dotting 'I's' and crossing 'T's'
Posted at 11:14 AM, Dec 21, 2017
and last updated 2017-12-22 11:34:36-05

CINCINNATI –  So what’s stopping Major League Soccer from accepting FC Cincinnati’s bid for an expansion team? 

Bill Wolf thinks it could be one word in this statement by MLS Commissioner Don Garber:

"There really isn't a hitch or impasse in anyway,” Garber said after accepting Nashville’s entry Wednesday. “We want to have finalized agreements before we announced teams.”

The key word, Wolf said, is  ”agreement.”

Agreement means a finished contract, Wolf said in his blog for Cincy Soccer Talk.

FC Cincinnati Vice President and General Manager Jeff Berding talked on 700 (WLW Radio) yesterday about an inches-thick contract the lawyers were looking at and that's the agreement, Wolf said.  

Cincinnati's bid was submitted 10 days ago and there hasn't been enough time to finish it - and the holidays mean lots of people are on vacation.

 “This isn't something like buying a car. This is multiple corporations and hundreds of millions of dollars,” Wolf said.

FC Cincinnati's offices will be closed next week, but their lawyers will be working overtime. They're trying to finalize an agreement with major league soccer and dotting the "I’s" and crossing the "T’s" take time.  

The team and MLS want to move carefully to avoid a financial or public relations mistakes.

 “I imagine there's changes on both sides of the contract that are being made or proposed and they have to come to some sort of agreement before they are willing to make it public,” said Joe Cobbs, Northern Kentucky University Assistant Professor.

Sources say the focus is on the Oakley Station and Newport Ovation sites for the planned $200 milllion soccer stadium and not anything in the West End right now.

Major League Soccer tweeted a statement Thursday saying it will not announce the second team awarded expansion until after the new year.

MLS announced Nashville was awarded expansion on Wednesday; Cincinnati, Detroit and Sacramento are all vying for the second and final selection for MLS expansion this year.