MLS expansion hopefuls FC Cincinnati have reached a partnership with Mercy Health, a Catholic health ministry serving Ohio on Kentucky, that would see Mercy Health become the team's jersey sponsor, should the team's application to join MLS be successful.
Should Cincinnati's application be approved in December – when two MLS expansion teams will be announced – the partnership would, according to the team, represent one of the largest jersey sponsorship commitments in MLS, on par with Atlanta United's deal with with American Family insurance. Per FCC and Mercy Health policy, specific terms of the deal were not disclosed.
“Mercy Health’s partnership with FC Cincinnati reaffirms the strength of the business community’s support for FC Cincinnati’s MLS vision. With an assist from Premier Partnerships, two incredible organizations are coming together for the benefit of our community by bringing MLS to the Queen City,” said Carl H. Lindner III FC Cincinnati majority owner, in a statement provided by the team.
Cincinnati is one of 12 cities bidding for four available spots in the next round of MLS expansion. Two of the teams are expected to be announced in December, with the following two teams to be announced at a later date.
In addition to their partnership with Mercy Health, FC Cincinnati are approaching a finalized soccer-specific stadium plan, according to team president Jeff Berding. He told a local radio station last week that the plan should be finalized shortly and would not include new taxes on local residents.