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Austin FC Acquires 19-Year-Old Midfielder Sebastian Berhalter on Loan Ahead of 2021 MLS Season

Austin FC retains option to trade for Berhalter on a permanent basis at end of the 2021 season; Berhalter won MLS Cup in 2020 with Columbus Crew SC

Austin, Texas - Austin FC, the 27th club in Major League Soccer (MLS), announced today that the Club has acquired 19-year-old midfielder Sebastian Berhalter on loan from Columbus Crew SC for the 2021 season, with the option to trade for the player’s rights on a permanent basis at the conclusion of the ‘21 season. Additional conditional GAM could be achieved based on performance-based benchmarks.

“Sebastian is a young and talented midfielder who will add depth to our growing roster,” commented Claudio Reyna, Austin FC Sporting Director. “We are excited to have him join the Club and look forward to his continued professional development with Austin FC.”

“I’m excited for this new opportunity and looking forward to the challenge,” commented Berhalter. “I can’t wait to get started.”

The former University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill midfielder arrives from Columbus Crew SC, where he was signed as a Homegrown Player in 2020. With Crew SC, Berhalter made nine (9) appearances (four (4) starts) in 2020 as a member of the team that won MLS Cup.

Berhalter (Pronounced “BURR-hall-ter”) made 103 appearances (97 starts) for Crew SC’s Academy (2014-19), scoring 11 goals and helping the team to a third-place finish in the USSDA U-19 Tournament. At the collegiate level, Berhalter made 17 appearances (nine (9) starts) in 2019 for the Tar Heels. Internationally, Berhalter has featured in three (3) U.S. U-16 Men’s National Team matches (one (1) start).