Bowing to pressure from players, fans, and at least one minority owner, Washington Spirit controlling owner Steve Baldwin said Thursday he would sell his stake in the NWSL team.
The announcement follows calls from the team’s players to sell the team to minority owner Y. Michele Kang.
Last week, Spirit coach Richie Burke was removed and prohibited from working in the NWSL following a harassment investigation. Spirit leadership was barred from participating in league governance for failing to address that situation.
Baldwin resigned as CEO, a move Spirit players saw as insufficient.
“The person we trust is Michele,” the players wrote, adding “you have always said you intended to hand the team over to female ownership. That moment is now. Please sell to Michele at a reasonable price.”
Kang bought a 35% stake in the team last December.
- In July, the Wilf family, owners of the Minnesota Vikings, bought the Orlando Pride and Orlando City SC for up to $450 million.
- The previous month, Ted Segal, founder of real estate and financing company EJS Group, bought the Houston Dynamo and Dash for a reported $400 million.
Baldwin said a sale of his stake should be wrapped up by the end of the year.