Massive Report can confirm the Grant Wahl report that Anthony Precourt is planning to move Columbus Crew SC to Austin, Texas beginning with the 2019 MLS season if the team is unable to secure a new downtown stadium to replace MAPFRE Stadium.
MLS secured trademarks for an Austin MLS team in August. The names were Austin FC and Austin Athletic.
Columbus has examined stadium options publicly for nearly a year after engaging Barrett Sports Group, LLC to survey stakeholders on October 17th of last year. The team has been quiet about the results of the survey.
Anthony Precourt purchased Crew SC and MAPFRE Stadium for $68 million in July 2013. Crew SC has played in MAPFRE Stadium since 1999 and has a 25 year lease that is due to expire after the 2023 season.
Team President Andy Loughnane spoke about the team’s revenue issues in an interview with Massive Report in August. Currently Crew SC has the lowest ticket prices in the league coupled with the flagging attendance means that the team has the lowest ticket revenue in MLS.
Editor’s Note: This article has been expanded