Chicago Sky rookie Angel Reese continues to add to her résumé, becoming the newest member of the DC Power Football Club’s ownership group

The No. 7 pick in the WNBA draft joins an group that includes the MLS team DC United as well as other DC-area community members and business owners. One of the USL Super League’s inaugural clubs, DC Power FC is set to begin play in August. 

"I want to help grow women's sports and elevate female athletes across the board," Reese, who's from Maryland, said in a statement. "We're taking over, and I'm honored to be able to support Power FC and invest in women's soccer in the DMV (District, Maryland, Virginia) community."

The USL is a sanctioned Division I league, meaning that it is on par with the NWSL and MLS in the United States. The league's eight current clubs are Brooklyn FC, Carolina Ascent FC, Dallas Trinity FC, DC Power FC, Fort Lauderdale United FC, Lexington SC, Spokane Zephyr FC, and Tampa Bay Sun FC.

DC Power FC will also be playing their home games in a familiar location: Matches will be hosted at DC’s Audi Field in partnership with MLS side DC United. Audi Field also home to the NWSL’s Washington Spirit.

"Angel's decision to be a founding investor alongside us in Power FC is groundbreaking," Jason Levien, DC United's CEO and co-chair, said in a statement. "As a Maryland native, Angel is so passionate about being a catalyst for positive change in women's sports in the DMV as well as globally while inspiring the next generation of female athletes. We're looking forward to her partnership in the boardroom as an equity partner."

It's been speculated that the Super League ultimately intends to compete outright with the NWSL. But in its first year, the league will focus on featuring the depth of women's soccer talent in the US.

Former NWSL players like Taylor Aylmer (Spokane), Jordyn Listro (Tampa Bay), Erika Tymrak (Tampa Bay), and Domi Richardson (Tampa Bay) have already announced a return to professional soccer via the USL.

The league is aiming to provide counter-programming to summer women's sports in the States, with a season running from fall to spring like the European calendar.

In a social media post, Reese said that she’s "grateful & blessed" to be part of the new ownership group. It’s the latest move in what has been a whirlwind spring for Reese, which included getting drafted, attending the Met Gala, signing a new partnership with Good American, and debuting with the Chicago Sky, among other achievements.

"Looking forward to creating new opportunities for women in professional soccer," she tweeted. "I’ve always had to desire to invest in a local team as a Maryland native!"

Reese is the latest female athlete to buy into a women’s sports team, joining the likes of Naomi Osaka, who owns a stake in the North Carolina Courage, and Serena Williams, who's part-owner of Angel City FC. 

Other pro athletes involved in women's sports team ownership include Patrick Mahomes, who shares ownership responsibilities of the Kansas City Current with his wife Brittany. Kevin Durant and Eli Manning are part-owners of Gotham FC, while NFL superstar Tom Brady is part-owner of the WNBA’s Las Vegas Aces.

The United Soccer League will launch a new professional women’s league in 2024 with plans to compete directly against the NWSL.

The USL Super League will kick off in August 2024 with 10 to 12 teams. Eight franchise locations already have been announced:

  • Charlotte, North Carolina
  • Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas
  • Lexington, Kentucky
  • Phoenix, Arizona
  • Spokane, Washington
  • Tampa Bay, Florida
  • Tucson, Arizona
  • Washington D.C.

The D.C. franchise will operate in conjunction with the city’s MLS club D.C. United. Other franchises, including Phoenix, will have connections to USL men’s clubs. Four other cities are expected to join in subsequent seasons, with Chattanooga, Indianapolis, Jacksonville, Madison and Oakland among the possible locations, The Athletic reported.

Initially, the USL had announced in 2021 that it would apply for Division II sanctioning for the new league, which would put it a step below the NWSL. Instead, it will now apply to U.S. Soccer for Division I sanctioning.

“The USL Super League will sit at the top of our women’s pyramid with strong ownership groups, modern stadiums, and passionate fans that will deliver immediate viability and long-term sustainability,” USL CEO Alec Papadakis said in a league statement.

The league will run on a fall-to-summer schedule, putting it on the same calendar as most international soccer leagues. That will put the Super League in contrast with the NWSL, which runs on a spring-to-fall schedule.

In response to news of the USL Super League, an NWSL spokesperson told the Wall Street Journal that they “welcome more opportunities for women to play professional soccer in the United States.”

USL Super League president Amanda Vandervort did not respond to questions about whether the league could be too much growth for the women’s pro game in the United States in such a short timeframe. The NWSL recently announced that it would add two more teams in 2026 to bring its total to 16, on top of two teams being added in 2024.

“The United States has 12 professional women’s teams but is about the same footprint and population as all of Europe, and they have over 150 top-tier professional women’s teams,” Vandervort told The Athletic. “There’s so much opportunity in this country. Ultimately I believe we’re filling an opportunity gap, and it’s our responsibility to do it at the highest standard.”

The Super League will operate without a salary cap, with the aim to compete on the global market. The current minimum salary in the NWSL is $36,400. Top player salaries sit at nearly $300,000 per year.

The USL hopes to capitalize on increased viewership for women’s sports, and has hied Octagon to help with their media rights deal.

“I think then we’re seeing it from a commercial standpoint, from a fan standpoint, fan engagement is off the charts. Decades of work have gone into where we are today and amazing people have been investing their lives in this journey along the way,” Vandervort said. “And I’m excited that we have now these ownership groups that are prepared to invest at the levels that they’re ready to invest.

“From building and upgrading incredible stadiums across this country to really investing in the experience for both players and fans, I think it’s an incredible moment in women’s soccer.”