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News Every Day |

A-list stars who invested in football clubs, after Hollywood hunk Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenney takeover Wrexham

FOR A-list celebrities money is no object – which makes them perfect candidates to invest in football clubs.

Everyone knows you don’t dip into your pocket and plough cash into a side if you are looking for handsome returns.

Instagram @southshieldsfc
Little Mix’s Jade Thirwall has invested in South Shields FC[/caption]
Instagram @southshieldsfc
Jade was named South Shields’ honorary president in August 2020[/caption]
Splash News
Jade Thirwall has had phenomenal success in girlband Little Mix after they won X Factor in 2011[/caption]

But many Hollywood actors, pop stars and big names have chosen to divert their wealth into football teams for a variety of reasons.

Little Mix’s Jade Thirwall is the latest superstar to cough up after she became a shareholder in her local non-league side South Shields FC.

SunSport takes a look at the other celebs to have dabbled in footy ownership.

RYAN REYNOLDS – WREXHAM

Reuters
Canadian Deadpool actor Ryan Reynolds recently completed a takeover at Wrexham[/caption]
Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenney voice their plans for Wrexham on Zoom

Hollywood hunk Ryan Reynolds and pal Rob McElhenney shocked the world in 2020 when they announced their intention to take over Wrexham.

The A-list duo intend to make the club a ‘global force’ while producing a Netflix-style documentary and boozing with fans.

The supporter-owned National League club voted in favour of Deadpool star Reynolds and It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia actor and producer McElhenney’s proposed takeover after they voiced their plans over Zoom.

The duo are prepared to use their own money to resurrect the club they see as a ‘sleeping giant’ and want to kickstart the side’s route into league football using their resources and exposure.

LOUIS TOMLINSON – DONCASTER

Rex Features
Tomlinson’s takeover bid with ex-chairman John Ryan collapsed[/caption]
Nigel Bennett
One Direction’s Louis Tomlinson appeared for Doncaster’s reserves in 2014[/caption]

One Direction pop sensation Louis Tomlinson joined boyhood side Doncaster Rovers as a PLAYER after impressing in a charity game.

He appeared off the bench for the reserve side in 2014 – living out a childhood dream.

The 1D singer – who had run a pub team called Three Horseshoes while growing up in the area – made a bid to takeover the club with former chairman John Ryan in the same year.

But the deal collapsed despite the pair exchanging contracts on the deal after the Football League said they were not presented with a satisfactory business plan.

NATALIE PORTMAN – ANGEL CITY

Hollywood celebs Natalie Portman, Eva Longoria and Co are 'extremely passionate' about setting up the Angel City women's team
Natalie Portman, Eva Longoria and other celeb pals are ‘extremely passionate’ about setting up the Angel City women’s team
Getty Images - Getty
Star Wars actress Natalie Portman is founding Angel City[/caption]

Star Wars actress Natalie Portman is pushing ahead with plans for her new women’s football team Angel City.

The Oscar winner has drafted in a bunch of her A-lister pals Eva Longoria, Jessica Chastain, Jennifer Garner, Uzo Aduba and America Ferrera as owners.

The side are due to kick off in the NWSL in 2022.

WILL FERRELL – LOS ANGELES FC

Splash News
Will Ferrell is a part-owner in MLS team Los Angeles FC[/caption]

Comedian and actor Will Ferrell bought a stake in MLS side Los Angeles FC in 2016.

But the funnyman’s reputation meant many people didn’t actually believe he was on the board of LAFC – who began their inaugural season in 2018.

LEBRON JAMES – LIVERPOOL

Bradley Ormesher - The Times
Basketball icon LeBron James owns a stake in Liverpool[/caption]

Basketball colossus LeBron James became a part owner of Liverpool in 2011.

The La Lakers icon received a 2 per cent stake in the Reds when his marketing firm signed off on a joint venture with Anfield owners Fenway Sports Partners.

James’ initial investment of around £5million was valued at over £24m by Bloomberg in 2019.

Baller James was delighted when Liverpool switched kit provider to Nike in August as he is sponsored by the Oregon-based sports giants and can now don the colours of the Premier League champs.

MATTHEW McCONAUGHEY – AUSTIN FC

Actor Matthew McConaughey is a part owner of Austin FC and visited Chelsea in 2019

American actor Matthew McConaughey is part owner of future MLS team Austin FC.

He revealed he was on the search for players during a visit to Chelsea in 2019 to watch compatriot Christian Pulisic play.

Austin FC will begin their journey in the MLS in 2021 with McConaughey – who won an Oscar for his role in Dallas Buyers Club – as one of the investors in the burgeoning outfit.

ELTON JOHN – WATFORD

Getty Images - Getty
Sir Elton John at Vicarage Road[/caption]

Singing legend Sir Elton John became Watford’s chairman and director in 1976 and appointed Graham Taylor as manager.

He bankrolled the club as they jumped three leagues into what then was the First Division.

Sir Elton sold to Jack Petchey in 1987 but remained president before buying his beloved Hornets back in 1997 and returning as chairman.

The lifelong fan stepped down in 2002 when the club needed a full-time chair but again continued as president.

DIPLO – PHOENIX RISING FC

Getty Images - Getty
DJ Diplo invested in Phoenix Rising FC[/caption]

Superstar DJ Diplo led a group that purchased a minority stake in Phoenix Rising FC.

The music star was one of the side’s initial investors in 2014 – when they were known as Arizona United.

The club play in the USL Championship – the second tier of the US system.

HUGH JACKMAN – NORWICH

Getty - Contributor
Hollywood actor Hugh Jackman missed the chance to invest in Norwich[/caption]

It doesn’t always work out for celebs, with X-Men star Hugh Jackman revealing he regretted not investing in Norwich.

The Australian actor revealed in 2011 that his mother lives in Norfolk and he is a self-proclaimed Canaries fan.

He told BBC Radio 5 Live: “Sometimes I make big mistakes.

“I got a letter about a year ago saying, ‘Being such a huge Norwich City fan would I like to be a celebrity investor?’, like a small part-owner.

“I said, ‘I think that’s a little stretched, I’ve been to Carrow Road once, my mum took me’, so I decided not to invest.”

Jackman is one of a number of celebrity canaries alongside joint majority shareholder and chef Delia Smith, actor and writer Stephen Fry and BT Sport’s Jake Humphrey.





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