Kang enters partnership with Lyon for multi-team women's soccer organization

LYON, France (AP) — Washington Spirit owner Michelle Kang has struck a deal to lead an international multi-team women's soccer organization that will include her National Women's Soccer League team and French club Lyon.

Kang's agreement with OL Groupe and Eagle Football Holdings, OL Groupe's majority owner, was announced Tuesday.

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

Kang will become the majority owner and CEO of the new organization. She will also join OL Groupe’s board of directors.

The organization plans to eventually expand to include other international clubs.

The all-stock deal comes after American businessman John Textor bought a majority stake in Lyon under his Eagle Football Holdings in December. Textor also has a stake in Crystal Palace.

Lyon's women will continue to use OL Groupe facilities, including Groupama Stadium.

OL Groupe announced last month that it intends to sell the NWSL club OL Reign. The Seattle-based Reign are among three NWSL clubs currently up for sale, including the Chicago Red Stars and the Portland Thorns.

The deal is subject to approval by the NWSL and is expected to close at the end of June.


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