With the constant number of audience and spectators around the world, football has always been one of the most profitable sports. Other than the well-known David Beckham, there are other celebrities who are very interested in this sport and would like to invest in it.
Football is one of the most popular sports in the world, with teams playing famous matches and clubs generating millions in revenue. Such is their fame that some sports stars are themselves famous brands. Thus, it only makes sense to invest and earn returns as the teams are performing superbly.
Businessmen, actors, and sports personalities have invested in football, with some even taking over the reins of teams. However, it is not new for the celebrities on the first list to buy and participate in famous gyms. With the likes of LeBron James, Sir Elton John and Ryan Reynolds jumping on the bandwagon, the game has become a lucrative and thriving business.
Here are some of the famous stars who have invested in soccer teams
Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenny
In November 2020, actors Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenny shook hands to take ownership of Wrexham AFC. With both Reynolds and McEllini being lesser-known football fans, the move came as a huge surprise to their followers.
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– Wrexham AFC (@Wrexham_AFC) October 26, 2021
Representatives submitted their proposal to the Wrexham Supporters Trust earlier in November 2020 and stated their plans to invest $2.5 million in a full acquisition. The famous Welsh Football Club is one of the oldest and holds high ranks in the National League.
Reynolds and McElhenney have taken it upon themselves to strengthen the team further to earn big points at the league table. So far, the team has not lost in 17 home games – its highest level since 2015. They intend to pump more money to take the team to the upper echelons of English football.
Natalie Portman, Serena Williams, Jay Shetty, Christina Aguilera, Rachel Zoe and others
Angel City FC has many famous investors and owners who not only raise the profile of the team but also help simplify the pool of sponsors. Designed by Academy Award-winning actress Natalie Portman in 2020, this women’s soccer team has an ever-growing list of investors that includes some of her best friends like Jennifer Garner, Eva Longoria, Serena Williams, and Jessica Chastain.
Recently, the list has been joined by A-list celebrities such as author and life coach Jay Shetty, actor Gabrielle Union, her young daughter Kavya James, Olympic gymnast Shawn Johnson East and fashion designer Rachel Zoe.
The team made its home debut in April 2022 but has already garnered a lot of attention and cheers. They won an NWSL game against North Carolina Courage 2-1, at Bank of California Stadium, Los Angeles. The team will face Orlando Pride in their next match on May 9, 2022.
The Los Angeles Lakers star is not only a die-hard football fan or an ardent spectator of the Champions League, but has also invested in the premier football club – Liverpool.
The four-time NBA winner bought 2% of the football club in 2011 for US$6.5 million. according to interested in trade In the report, his stake was reportedly valued at around US$32 million in 2018 and is on the rise.
Since then, Liverpool have won the Champions League and Premier League titles, boosting the team’s global value to more than US$4.1 billion as of April 2021, according to Forbes. These accomplishments and high value have driven the price of LeBron James’ stake to nearly $46 million, according to 2021 BBC Report.
David Beckham is a famous name in football and has played for some of the most famous clubs. Co-owner of electronic talent development agency, Guild Esports, retired from the field in 2013 only to invest in the game.
The former England captain and Manchester United legend is co-owner of Major League Soccer (MLS) team, Inter Miami, along with Jorge and Jose Mas. In September 2021, Beckham increased his ownership stake and was pivotal in finalizing the deal to buy Marcelo Clore and Masayoshi Son.
According to a 2021 press release issued by Inter Miami, Beckham said: “We are very proud of the progress we have made over the past year and a half in Major League Soccer, and we are grateful to have Marcelo and Masayoshi with us on the first part of our journey.” He also acquired opponent rights to the MLS team as part of his 2007 contract, during which he played for the league as part of the Los Angeles Galaxy.
That’s not all for the stellar midfielder. He joins his former teammates, who are best known as the ’92 Class’, and bought a 10% stake in Salford City Football Club in 2019. The ’92’ class includes Gary Neville, Phil Neville, Ryan Giggs, Paul Scholes and Nicky Butt along with Together with Beckham, they are the majority of the team’s shareholders.
2019 saw Salford City defeat AFC Fylde to secure their first promotion to the Football League, which was a huge boost to the team.
One of America’s most popular comedians, actors, and game show hosts, Drew Carey was among the first from the United States to take ownership of a football team when he purchased a 7.5 percent stake in the MLS franchise Seattle Sounders in 2007.
The price is right Starr is also the president of Seattle Sounders FC, the club’s member association. Carey developed a talent for the game when he watched the LA Galaxy game live in 2003 and has attended almost all of the team’s matches so far. The team won its first MLS Cup in 2016.
In 2019, quarterback Russell Wilson joined the popular Seattle Seahawks and his wife, Grammy-winning singer-songwriter Ciara, as well as rapper Macklemore and his wife Tricia Davis to the club’s ownership group. It was the same year the team won their second MLS Cup.
In 1976, Elton John, a singing icon and legend, took the reins of Watford and became its owner and chief executive. During his tenure, the club was promoted from the Fourth Division to the First Division, which can be considered the equivalent of the English Premier League in the 1980s. However, he lost to Liverpool in 1983 but reached the FA Cup Final the following year.
In 1987, John sold the club to businessman and philanthropist Jack Beachy. However, he returned after a decade as president in 1997 but resigned in 2002. He remains honorary president for life of the football club, and although he is no longer a majority stakeholder, he has a great personality in the game with financial interests .
Elton John plays regularly in Watford’s home matches and also has a podium named after him at Vicarage Road.
For many, it might be hard to believe that Hollywood comedian and actor Will Ferrell is a hardcore football fan. Such is his obsession with the game that Saturday Night Live Star invested in his local team Los Angeles FC, better known as LAFC, and became a co-owner of the MLS franchise in 2016.
Nicknamed “Black and Gold”, the team also has other entertainment and sports stars as its co-owners. These include basketball legend Ervin “Magic” Johnson, motivational speaker Tony Robbins, YouTube co-founder Chad Hurley, and American TV personalities Allen and Mark Shapiro.
In addition, the United States Women’s National Team (USWNT), legend Mia Hamm Garciaparra and her husband and MLB All-Star Nomar Garciaparra own minority stakes in the club.
(Main image credit: kingjames/Instagram, David Beckham/@davidbeckham/Instagram; Featured image credit: David Beckham/@davidbeckham/Instagram)
This story first appeared in Lifestyle Asia Kuala Lumpur.