Rickie Fowler keen to invest in Leeds United amid 49ers group takeover

Golfer Rickie Fowler said he is hopeful of becoming an investor in Leeds United following last week’s announcement that the second-tier English club would be taken over by the investment arm of the NFL’s San Francisco 49ers.

Leeds said Friday that 49ers Enterprises, which already owned 44% of the club, had reached an agreement to purchase the remaining 56% stake held by current owner Andrea Radrizzani’s Aser Ventures.

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Speaking ahead of this week’s U.S. Open in Los Angeles, Fowler said that he, along with fellow PGA Tour golfers Jordan Spieth and Justin Thomas, were eager to be a part of the new ownership group.

“There is the group that’s moving forward with being involved with Leeds. Myself, J.T. [Thomas] and Jordan [Spieth] potentially will be a part of it,” he told Sky Sports.

The trio have seemingly been turned onto Leeds by fellow golfer Matt Fitzpatrick‘s Leeds-supporting caddie Billy Foster, though Fowler said Foster wasn’t involved in the initial discussions.

“It’s cool to have those opportunities,” Fowler added. “I know we are looking into it. It will be fun if we get to be a part of it. If not, we’ll continue to root for Leeds to see if we can help out Billy.

“Obviously they got relegated, but to be able to go to a Premier League game, Champions League. I feel like, obviously you call it football over there, we call it soccer here, it’s a massive sport.

“I feel like it’s continuing to get bigger in the States, but since I haven’t been to a game I don’t have the true appreciation until I’ve actually been able to go and be there and feel that energy.”

Leeds were relegated from the Premier League following a tumultuous season that saw them led by four different managers — including American Jesse Marsch, who was fired in February. They finished second from bottom in the standings on 31 points and will now compete in the EFL Championship next season.