It might surprise many sports fans to learn just how many celebrities are now involved in soccer ownership groups. However, there is good reason for this celebrity interest. First, soccer teams are often good investments. Second, owning a team is more appealing to athletes than investing in things like oil or gas. Third, celebrity ownership is often good PR for the clubs involved.

Which celebrity just bought a soccer team?

Former NFL quarterback Tom Brady was recently part of the takeover of the English Championship’s Birmingham City club. This deal became official on Aug. 3, 2023.

The 10 Biggest Celebrities who own Soccer Teams

Elton John’s soccer team: Watford FC

Sir Elton John, the world-famous musician, can also be known as Mr. Watford. A lifelong supporter of the club based in the suburbs of London, John became Watford chairmen in 1976, invested in the team, and watched it climb the league ladder all the way into the English First Division.

Elton John has been the team’s owner on and off ever since, and he also performs an occasional concert at Watford’s ground Vicarage Road. In 2014, the club opened the “Sir Elton John Stand.”

Michael B. Jordan’s soccer team: AFC Bournemouth

In 2022, AFC Bournemouth was taken over by Black Knight Football Club, a holding company led by American businessman Bill Foley, who owns the NHL’s Vegas Golden Knights.

The group is also fronted by actor Michael B. Jordan, who attended his first game in December 2022. It is very common for billionaires such as Foley to recruit a celebrity counterpart to serve as the face of a takeover, which often helps win local fans’ support for the change. Bournemouth fans were ecstatic to welcome Jordan.

Will Ferrell’s soccer team: Los Angeles FC

Actor Will Ferrell became a co-owner of MLS expansion franchise Los Angeles FC (LAFC) back in 2016, almost two years before the club played its first game. In 2022, LAFC became MLS Cup champions, and the actor who recently starred in “Barbie” drank straight out of the cup.

Magic Johnson, Mia Hamm, Nomar Garciaparra, Mark Shapiro, and Joe Tsai also have ownership stakes in LAFC, but Ferrell certainly is the face of the group.

Matthew McConaughey’s soccer team: Austin FC

Matthew McConaughey’s adopted hometown is famously Austin, Texas. The former “True Detective” star loves the city so much that he decided to invest in the Austin FC project nearly two years before the club played its first professional match.

Austin FC currently sits fifth in MLS’ Western Conference standings.

LeBron James’s soccer team: Liverpool FC

LeBron James has a deal with the Fenway Sports Group (FSG) hedge fund to globally market the NBA superstar. As part of the deal, James was given a minority stake in one of FSG’s two crown jewels: Liverpool FC (the other is baseball’s Boston Red Sox).

James became an FSG partner in 2021 and claims to be a Liverpool fan, occasionally promoting the club on his social media. He has also released Liverpool-colored shoes, and Liverpool has released a LeBron-inspired clothing line.

Ryan Reynolds’s soccer team: Wrexham AFC

Canadian-American actor Ryan Reynolds and American actor Rob McElhenney became the co-owners of Welsh non-league club Wrexham in November 2020. The pair partnered with Hulu create the show “Welcome to Wrexham,” which chronicles the club’s hopeful rise up the English football pyramid.

Under Reynolds’ ownership, Wrexham achieved promotion to League Two (the fourth tier of English soccer) for the first time since 2008 and is among the favorites to earn a promotion up to League One (where the team hasn’t played since 2005).

Tom Brady’s soccer team: Birmingham City

On Aug. 2, 2023, former NFL star quarterback Tom Brady became a part-owner of English championship soccer outfit Birmingham City. The club’s new majority owner is Selby Companies Limited, a UK subsidiary of Knighthead Capital Management.

As an investor in Knighthead, Brady is now a minority owner of Birmingham City, and he has already released a nice promotional teaser for his new team.

Natalie Portman’s soccer team: Angel City FC

Actress Natalie Portman is not just the owner of NWSL team Angel City FC -- she’s also the founder. Her all-female group of co-owners includes former Olympic gold medal-winning gymnast Shawn Johnson.

Many other NWSL teams have celebrity investors. Former U.S. Open tennis champion Naomi Osaka has invested in the North Carolina Courage, and Chelsea Clinton has a stake in the Washington Spirit. 

David Beckham’s soccer team: Inter Miami

Perhaps the most prominent member of this list, David Beckham’s Inter Miami, has really been in the spotlight recently. Why? A guy named Lionel Messi might be the answer, as the star Argentine’s debut in MLS has created huge intrigue and increased worldwide viewership for the club.

Owning an MLS team was always part of the plan for Beckham. In fact, the right to own a future MLS franchise was included in his contract when he joined the LA Galaxy back in 2007. Will Messi follow a similar path?

Beckham’s current Inter Miami ownership stake is 30 percent.

Kevin Durant’s soccer team: Philadelphia Union

Basketball star Kevin Durant joined the Philadelphia Union’s ownership team back in 2020, bringing yet another celebrity owner into the MLS community.

Durant’s deal came with a 5 percent ownership stake and the option to purchase an additional 5 percent. He often shares Union highlights on social media.

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