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.
Little Mix’s Jade Thirwall has invested in South Shields FCCredit: Instagram @southshieldsfc
Jade was named South Shields’ honorary president in August 2020Credit: Instagram @southshieldsfc
Jade Thirwall has had phenomenal success in girlband Little Mix after they won X Factor in 2011Credit: Splash News
But many Hollywood actors, pop stars and big names have chosen to divert their wealth into football teams for a variety of reasons.
SunSport takes a look at the other celebs to have dabbled in footy ownership.
RYAN REYNOLDS – WREXHAM
Canadian Deadpool actor Ryan Reynolds is trying to buy WrexhamCredit: Reuters
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 supporter-owned National League club are voting on 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
Tomlinson’s takeover bid with ex-chairman John Ryan collapsedCredit: Rex Features
One Direction’s Louis Tomlinson appeared for Doncaster’s reserves in 2014Credit: Nigel Bennett
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
Natalie Portman, Eva Longoria and other celeb pals are ‘extremely passionate’ about setting up the Angel City women’s team
Star Wars actress Natalie Portman is founding Angel CityCredit: Getty Images – Getty
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
Will Ferrell is a part-owner in MLS team Los Angeles FCCredit: Splash News
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
Basketball icon LeBron James owns a stake in LiverpoolCredit: Bradley Ormesher – The Times
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.
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
Sir Elton John at Vicarage RoadCredit: Getty Images – Getty
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
DJ Diplo invested in Phoenix Rising FCCredit: Getty Images – Getty
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
Hollywood actor Hugh Jackman missed the chance to invest in NorwichCredit: Getty – Contributor
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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