Eli Manning
The Knoxville News-Sentinel

Eli Manning now owns part of a local professional soccer team. The Giants legend has purchased a minority stake in the NWSL’s NJ/NY Gotham FC, joining a recent parade of high-profile investors.

New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy and his wife, Tammy Murphy, are the majority owners.

“I have lived and worked in this community for almost two decades. It’s home to me, and Gotham FC is my family’s favorite soccer club,” Manning said in a statement. “Combine that with the organization’s strong leadership, talented roster, and sustained growth, and it became clear that joining this great group was a fantastic opportunity.”

According to the team website, “Manning will act as a consultant and advisor to boost the club’s profile in local, national, and international markets. He will also collaborate with his fellow owners and club leadership on a variety of club initiatives to promote the club and support its players and community.”

Manning has remained busy since his retirement in early 2020. He now works in a business operations and fan engagement role for the Giants to go with his various other ventures (Eli’s Places on ESPN, the Monday Night Football Manningcast, et cetera).


Several athletes (current and former) have now purchased stakes in the NWSL team. The rundown:

Sue Bird. The WNBA star became an investor last month.

The team website states the following: “As an owner, Bird acts as a consultant and advisor to boost the club’s profile in local, national, and international markets. She also collaborates with Tammy Murphy, Managing Owner Ed Nalbandian, and club leadership on a variety of club initiatives to promote the club and support its players and community.”

Kevin Durant. The Nets star (who may not be in New York much longer) and his business partner, Rich Kleiman, are also investors. Durant and Kleiman are the co-founders of Thirty Five Ventures. Durant also has a 5% stake in the MLS’s Philadelphia Union.

Carli Lloyd. The New Jersey native, former Rutgers star and USWNT goes from the pitch to the office. She retired from Gotham FC last year and has since purchased a stake. Her role will be similar to Bird’s, according to the team site.

Listen to ESNY’s Wide Right Podcast on Apple here or on Spotify here.

Ryan Honey is a staff writer and host of the Wide Right Podcast.