MLS accepts DC United ownership changes

Swansea City investors join forces at Audi Field.

MLS accepts DC United ownership changes

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The board of governors of Major League Soccer (MLS) has approved changes made to the ownership of American soccer club DC United.

While Jason Levien, who is also a co-owner of former English Premier League club Swansea City, will remain one of the main investors at the club, Erick Thohir is no longer part of the group, according to a report in the Washington Post.

Thohir, an Indonesian businessman and minority shareholder at Italian soccer team Inter Milan, owned 78 per cent of United. He was involved with the club for six years, partnering with Levien in funding the construction of the team’s US$400 million Audi Field home. At this stage, it is unclear how Thohir's former holding has been split, with Levien purchasing his stake with the intention of forming a new and diversified group.

The report states that Levien, the club’s chief executive, will be joined by US businessman Steve Kaplan, who is also a majority shareholder at Swansea, who were relegated from the English top tier at the end of last season. Kaplan is also vice chairman of National Basketball League (NBA) team the Memphis Grizzlies.

Al Tylis, who is also a minority owner of Swansea, will buy a stake in DC United as well. Other investors are believed to have links to the Welsh club, but have not been identified in the report.

One name not present is that of Los Angeles Times newspaper owner Patrick Soon-Shiong, who had been linked with a stake in the club. He is said to have been in recent discussions with Levien.