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Major League Soccer coming to Portland

PORTLAND, Ore. - Portland has won its bid for a Major League Soccer team. League officials joined new franchise owner Merritt Paulson on Friday for the widely expected announcement that the league will have a team in Portland. The team expects to begin play in 2011.

Portland city officials approved a financing deal last week that would renovate PGE Park for soccer and build a new ballpark for the Triple-A Portland Beavers baseball team. The city still must come up with a plan to raise $15 million of about $89 million needed for the project.

Portland will join a new franchise in Vancouver, British Columbia, as part of the MLS expansion.

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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