Washington Spirit, Lyon owners form women’s soccer group

Michele Kang, proprietor of National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) facet Washington Spirit, has agreed a take care of the owners of Olympique Lyonnais Féminin to create a world women’s soccer group encompassing the 2 groups.

The deal will see Kang turn out to be majority proprietor and CEO of the corporate, the first-ever woman-owned and led multi-club soccer group, slightly greater than a yr after she acquired the Spirit in a reported document $35 million deal.

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The deal entails OL Groupe contributing its women’s staff and Kang providing her majority share of the Spirit to the brand new enterprise, the 2 events mentioned on Tuesday.

“This deal represents a major step forward in the history of women’s professional football,” Kang mentioned in a press release.

“It brings together the unparalleled tradition of the 8-time Champions League winning OL Féminin and the dynamism of the 2021 NWSL Champion Spirit to usher our sport into a new era.”

The platform will look to amass further golf equipment in different international locations in Europe, the Americas and Asia.

OL Groupe has begun the method of promoting its NWSL facet OL Reign to keep away from potential battle, months after a misconduct scandal compelled one other NWSL staff, the Portland Thorns, to hit the market.

“Over the past 20 years, OL Groupe has played an important role in growing the game of women’s football. Today the sport’s popularity is exploding in Europe, the US, and around the globe,” mentioned OL Groupe CEO and Chairman John Textor.

The two sides mentioned every membership will retain their distinct id, with a watch towards upgrading present infrastructure and rising their respective fan bases.

Investments in sources for efficiency science and know-how, knowledge analytics and workers growth could be shared throughout the groups.

“The combination represents hope, determination, and the necessary business steps towards shaping the future of women’s football,” mentioned Kang.

The all-stock deal comes at a pivotal time for the women’s sport, with the 2 sides calling it “a clear sign that the investment and resources in women’s football are taking a major step towards equality with men’s teams.”

The NWSL mentioned earlier this yr that it could carry again the Utah Royals and add an growth staff to the Bay Area in 2024. Commissioner Jessica Berman mentioned she expects so as to add one other two groups for the 2026 season.

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