Skip to content

Red Stars owner to sell team after report of abuse in NWSL

Whisler's decision comes two months after the team's board of directors voted to remove him as chairman and forbid him from participation in team operations. Players also called on him to sell the team.

Associated Press
Associated Press
| 2 min read
Red Stars owner to sell team after report of abuse in NWSL

Embed from Getty Images

CHICAGO (AP) — Chicago Red Stars owner Arnim Whisler announced Monday he is selling his stake in the team following an investigation that found emotional abuse and sexual misconduct were systemic in the National Women’s Soccer League.

Whisler's decision comes two months after the team's board of directors voted to remove him as chairman and forbid him from participation in team operations. Players also called on him to sell the team.

Whisler said in a statement he made the decision to sell the team after 15 years “with a heavy heart."

“I have proudly poured our hearts, time, resources and efforts into founding the NWSL and transforming the Chicago Red Stars into one of the top women’s soccer clubs in the world," he said. "It is clear now that we needed to provide greater support for our players and we deeply regret that we didn’t do more sooner.”

Former acting U.S. Attorney General Sally Q. Yates and the law firm of King & Spaulding released results in early October of an investigation that detailed the series of abuses and misconduct that impacted multiple teams in the league, including the Red Stars. The report stated that Whisler was aware of the emotional and verbal abuse by former coach Rory Dames dating to 2014 and dismissed the complaints by players.

Dames resigned following the 2021 season when The Washington Post published allegations of verbal and emotional abuse. Dames was one of five NWSL coaches who either were fired or resigned last season amid allegations of misconduct.

Whisler said his group is working with New York City investment bank Inner Circle Sports to facilitate the sale and will try to find ownership that “represents the diversity of Chicago.”

Portland Thorns owner Merritt Paulson announced last week he is putting the team up for sale, and coach Rhian Wilkinson resigned following a request by players. Wilkinson said she was investigated and cleared of wrongdoing by the NWSL and its players union after she self-reported that she and a player had developed feelings for one another but never acted upon them.


Subscribe to the Chicago Journal


The Chicago Journal needs your support.

At just $20/year, your subscription not only helps us grow, it helps maintain our commitment to independent publishing.

CLICK HERE TO SUBSCRIBE

If you're already a subscriber and you'd like to send a tip to continue to support the Chicago Journal, which we would greatly appreciate, you can do so at the following link:

Send a tip to the Chicago Journal


Subscribe to the Chicago Journal

Sports NewsSportsNews

Associated Press Twitter

News and content from The Associated Press, which has been covering the world's most important stories since 1846.


Related Posts

Zach LaVine scores 36 as Bulls beat Trail Blazers 129-121

Zach LaVine scored 36 points and the Chicago Bulls beat the Portland Trail Blazers for their 3rd win in 4 games.

Zach LaVine scores 36 as Bulls beat Trail Blazers 129-121

Fire causes $1.25m in damage at historic Illinois mansion

A fire at the historic Haley Mansion in Joliet caused $1.25 million in damage, authorities said.

Fire causes $1.25m in damage at historic Illinois mansion

Chicago announces best monikers in snowplow naming contest

Chicago city staff chose 50 finalists and the mayor's office received more than 80,000 votes. Staff ultimately chose seven winners.

Chicago announces best monikers in snowplow naming contest