MLS side Columbus Crew are one step closer to remaining in Ohio thanks to some help from NFL franchise the Cleveland Browns.
Browns owner Jimmy Haslam is part of an investment group that is trying to keep the Crew in Columbus.
Crew's current owner Anthony Precourt has made it clear in recent months he would like to relocate the team to Austin, Texas. He reportedly wanted to put the team in either Columbus or Austin, whichever one would build him a stadium.
MLS, though, is still planning to introduce an Austin team, saying "there is a clear path forward" to operate a franchise in the area.
Haslam and the Columbus Partnership released a statement along with the MLS announcing their intentions on Friday.
"Major League Soccer and the Columbus Partnership have been working together for several months on a plan to keep the Crew in Columbus and we have made significant progress," MLS said in a statement.
"MLS, the Columbus Partnership and the investor group all agree that for the club to be successful, it requires strong local owners, long-term corporate support, a strong season ticket base and long-term plans for a stadium, practice facilities and associated sites.
"MLS is committed to keeping the Crew in Columbus should we continue to make progress on these critical components and agree to key terms with the investor group."
A statement from Dee and Jimmy Haslam on the Columbus Crew: pic.twitter.com/tSovbEKZ8G— Cleveland Browns (@Browns) October 12, 2018
Haslam, the Columbus Partnership and Dr. Pete Edwards released a joint statement.
"While there are many details to be worked out, our alliance is working diligently and collaboratively with [MLS] to keep the Crew in its community," the statement read.
"We are very excited about the quiet but deliberate progress that has been made to date and will keep the community updated as this process moves forward."
Haslam added: "We value and appreciate the benefits of a professional sports franchise can bring to a community and are hopeful to be part of the solution to keep the Crew in Columbus.
"We would invest a strong infrastructure within the Crew organisation so that we can continue our focus and commitment to building a winning Cleveland Browns football team in Northeast Ohio. We look forward to seeing how this process evolves."
|TJ Watt hopes to win NFL sacks race with brother JJ|
|Steelers´ Roethlisberger texted Bell but ´didn’t hear back´|
|Durant keeps details of Green spat ´in-house´ but envisages resolution|
|Warriors drop Hawks as Green serves suspension|
|Former NBA star McGrady says Carmelo Anthony should retire|
|Celtics´ Smart: We have to look at ourselves in the mirror|
|Melvin, Snitker win manager of the year awards|
|Warriors´ Green suspended for Hawks clash|
|Ludwigsburg stun high-flying Murcia in BCL|
|Rams v Chiefs moved to LA due to Mexico City field conditions|
|Bell fails to report to Steelers, will sit out rest of season|
|LeVert avoids need for surgery, should return this season|
|All I ever wanted to do is win, says Sixers signing Butler|
|Hue Jackson joins Bengals staff as ´special assistant´|
|It´s just team spirit - Livingston not worried by Durant-Green exchange|
|Nets offer support to LeVert following serious leg injury|
|Anthony Davis leads Pelicans, Clippers hold off Warriors in OT|
|Giants too good for 49ers in crunch time|
|Thibodeau discusses Butler trade: We thought this was the best deal for us|
|Acuna, Ohtani win rookie of the year awards|
|LeBron James on Lakers’ early season struggles: ‘I almost cracked’|
|Rams WR Kupp out for season with torn ACL|
|Jimmy Butler trade: 76ers acquire Timberwolves star in blockbuster deal|
|Saints sign Marshall following Bryant injury|
|Very troubling times - LeBron James alarmed by gun violence|
|Rockets GM denies Anthony will be waived|
|Norman says Washington home crowds ´just don´t really care´|
|Bucks beat Nuggets to finish gruelling schedule stretch|
|Titans stun Patriots, Browns upset Falcons|
|Browns´ Chubb relishes record-breaking performance: It definitely is very special|
|Fitzgerald overtakes Owens in career receiving yards|
|Brees leapfrogs Favre on all-time list for touchdown passes|
|Jones fastest in NFL to reach 10,000 receiving yards|
|Mahomes breaks Chiefs´ single-season TD record|
|Embiid and Simmons excited at Butler arrival|
|The Sunday Seven - 7 Key Opta facts for NFL Week 10|
|LeBron James among Lakers to be affected by Sacramento smoke|
|Spurs top struggling Rockets, Harden|
|Shanahan discusses Giants-49ers matchup amid possible postponement|
|76ers ´agree Jimmy Butler trade´ with Timberwolves|
|76ers unsure over rookie Smith´s return following allergy issue|
|Embiid: They call me ´Clutch´ for a reason|
|Butler: Timberwolves in ´big-time hole´ and can´t take criticism|
|Hayward expected boos on Jazz return|
|Celtics forward Gordon Hayward booed on return to Utah|
|Embiid saves 76ers in overtime to down Hornets|
|Long-time Twins star Mauer announces retirement|
|Lakers guard Ball tweaks ankle in practice, may miss game against Kings|
|Gronkowski, Michel ´questionable´ for Pats|
|Warriors coach Kerr encouraged by Curry MRI results|
|Irving praises Celtics´ resiliency in stunning comeback|
|Panthers safety Reid puzzled by ejection|
|Curry set for MRI as Kerr bemoans Warriors complacency|
|Thunder cruise to win over Rockets, Anthony struggles in return to OKC|
|Roethlisberger helps Steelers thrash Panthers|
|Pierce thinks Duke could beat Cavaliers|
|Martinez becomes first player to win Silver Slugger at two different positions|
|Kanter upset with Hawks over ´childish´ tweet about his scary fall|
|Lakers coach Walton on addition of Chandler: We needed the help now|
|This Week in U.S. Sports: Dez Bryant finds a home, Bryce Harper turns down big offer|
|Manning focused on much-needed Giants win|
|Eagles´ Jenkins: Defending champions relish being underdogs again|
|Lakers signing Chandler plans to ease LeBron burden|
|Leonard scores 25 in return to help Raptors top Kings|
|Cowboys running back Elliott calls matchup with Eagles a must-win game|
|Promitheas beaten but Bologna stay perfect in Group D|
|Yankees re-sign CC Sabathia to one-year deal|
|Saints sign Bryant to one-year contract|
|Atlanta Falcons swoop to sign Bruce Irvin|
|Trail Blazers hand Bucks second loss behind McCollum´s big game|