Welcome to the NWSL, Angel City

New Angel City NWSL team sponsors Natalie Portman

Well, it’s finally happened. After all the wishing, speculating, and rumors… Los Angeles is getting a women’s soccer team in 2022. Welcome to the NWSL Angel City.

That’s not actually the team’s official name. That will be announced later this year. And you might be wondering, so what’s the big deal? The NWSL has had expansion teams before. Yes, but usually the NWSL team is owned by or somehow affiliated with the city’s MLS team. This club, however, will be built from scratch. Angel City isn’t owned by the same entity that owns the MLS team, LAFC. Angel City is founded mostly by women and led by Academy Award winning actress Natalie Portman. Yes, THAT Natalie Portman. “Together, we aim to build not only a winning team on the field, but also to develop a passionately loyal fan base,” Portman stated. “ We also hope to make a substantive impact on our community, committing to extending access to sports for young people in Los Angeles,” she continued. But she isn’t the only big name invested in this team. Serena Williams, her daughter and husband, Uzo Aduba, Jennifer Garner, America Ferrera, Lily Singh, and Jessica Chastain are involved as well.

https://twitter.com/jes_chastain/status/1285608482448855041?s=20

Former USWNT members Julie Foudy, Mia Hamm, Rachel Buehler, Shannon Boxx, Lauren Cheney Holiday, Abby Wambach and her wife Glennon Doyle are also part of Angel City’s founding investor group. NWSL commissioner Lisa Baird mentions the NWSL fan base that already exists in Los Angeles. And she’s right, we’re hungry for a women’s soccer team. The problem was never lack of interest. It was lack of investment in women’s sports. Angel City is being built from the ground up by female-led group. The president of the group, Julie Uhrman, mentioned in a statement that the group has had hundreds of conversations with owners, players, activists, union leaders, and fans. She also states that they will “make a positive impact on our local community.”

Any LA native can tell you that positive impact is sorely needed. How this will be executed remains to be seen. And while we wait for more news, we can have some fun coming up with the starting 11 for this new team. Who do you think will follow captain Christen Press onto the pitch? Is is a bit presumptuous to assume Press will wear the armband? Maybe so. But she deserves to captain her hometown team.