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Professional soccer coming to Lexington in 2023


Lexington is set to become the home of a professional soccer team. The formal announcement came downtown Tuesday. The United Soccer League expansion club is scheduled to begin play in the 2023 season.

The first season of soccer will be played at a local collegiate facility. The majority owner of Lexington Pro Soccer is Tower Hill Sports, founded by area horseman Bill Shively. “We’re going to have a soccer team here and it’s going to be a pro soccer team and we’re going to win the games. I’m very competitive, in case you don’t know," he said. "So, this is going to be a winning team."

Lexington Pro Soccer will respond to the request for proposal for the High Street Development Project with plans to build a soccer-specific stadium at the site. The venue would be available for other events like concerts and festivals.

Lexington Mayor Linda Gorton said a local pro club will create jobs and attract jobs. She said a built-in audience for soccer exists in Lexington. “My husband and I, we supported international students for 20 years at the University of Kentucky and every one of them came to us already playing soccer and knowing the game,” said Gorton.

The current USL season involves 12 teams playing 28 games. Other expansion markets already announced are found in Central Valley California, Northern Colorado, and Spokane Washington.

Copyright 2021 WEKU. To see more, visit WEKU.

Stu Johnson is a reporter/producer at WEKU in Lexington, Kentucky.