Natalie Portman, Serena Williams, and Former USWNT Players Invest in New Soccer Team
Los Angles- Actress Natalie Portman and Serena Williams are among the names that have invested in a new women's soccer team in Los Angeles that will start up in 2022.
The increased viewership and buzz surrounding women soccer have been astonishing for the past five years and Portman, Williams, and others wanted to bring that excitement to Los Angeles. "Today we take an exciting step by announcing the first women majority-owned and led ownership group," Portman said in an NWSL statement."I am thrilled by the opportunity to partner with this incredible group of people to bring a professional women's soccer team to Los Angeles."
This is the first time a team will be majority-owned by a group of women. As of right now, there is no definite name for the team, but Williams and Portman will be releasing the name later in the future. Right now, they are strategic planning to maximize the success the USWNT has had and wants everyone to be excited. During the USWNT route to winning the 2019 World Cup, attendance increased by 22%.
"The growth trajectory of the NWSL is incredibly exciting, but we also need to be strategic and thoughtful about how fast we expand and the communities we partner with," NWSL Commissioner Lisa Baird said in a statement."We've long sought the right partner in LA considering the NWSL fanbase that already exists in the region and the massive interest in women's soccer in general. Those factors, along with an incredible ownership group make this an ideal situation and we couldn't be more thrilled to move forward."
Williams' daughter Alexis Olympia Ohanian Jr. is now the youngest child to be an owner, at the age of two years old. Here are the rest of the familiar faces that will be part owners in this team: Julie Foudy, Rachel Buehler, Shannon Boxx, Amanda Cromwell, Lorrie Fair Allen, Ronnie Fair Sullins, Joy Fawcett, Angela Hucles, Shannon Mac Millan, Tisha Venturini Hoch, Saskia Webber, and Mia Hamm.
This new team will be now the eleventh organization that will be playing in the NWSL.