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NYCFC and Man City: What is the connection between Football Group clubs?

4:02 am AEDT 25/1/23
Magno NYFC Haaland Manchester City GFX
New York City FC and Manchester City are the primary holdings of a global football network, and GOAL explains the exact nature of their connection

City Football Group isn't subtle about the shared ownership of NYCFC and Manchester City. Those sky blue jerseys are unmistakable.

But there's more between the MLS and Premier League teams than overlapping brand identity, and in the years to come, the Premier League heavyweights could gain increased utility from their MLS partner.

Below, GOAL takes a look at the ways NYCFC and Manchester City work together...

Is NYCFC owned by Manchester City?

No, not exactly. Both teams are part of the same City Football Group investment portfolio but Manchester City doesn't own NYCFC (even if their global success helps raise the latter's profile).

Ferran Soriano is the CEO of City Football Group and is closely involved with leading both NYCFC and Manchester City, along with the rest of City Football Group's holdings.

City Football Group created what would become an MLS expansion team in NYCFC in 2013.

Which clubs does City Football Group own?

As of January 2023, City Football Group has significant ownership stakes in the following 11 clubs:

  • Manchester City
  • Melbourne City FC
  • Yokohama F. Marinos
  • Montevideo City Torque
  • Girona
  • Sichuan Jiuniu
  • Mumbai City FC
  • Lommel SK
  • Troyes
  • Palermo

NYCFC and Manchester City's business partnership

The biggest asset for City Football Group clubs is the ability to use a shared scouting network and transfer players and coaches as needed between clubs.

There's a uniformity implemented to help people adjust when moving between teams that goes beyond matchday kits, as training centers, signage and more are kept consistent.

And staff members keep track of how partner clubs perform. Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola watched from a restaurant as NYCFC won the championship in MLS in 2021, and he revealed his affection for then-NYCFC star Valentin Castellanos.

"What I saw when the scouting department talked to me, I know he's a quality player and ready to make the next step to Europe and we will see where," Guardiola said, foreshadowing the player's eventual loan to fellow City Football Group side Girona.

On the MLS Cup final, Guardiola added: "We watched it in the restaurant and we couldn't believe it. I was really impressed with the way they handled the extra time. When you concede a goal with 10 seconds left before finishing the game and being champions and have extra time you can be destroyed.

"But in extra time, wow, they were much, much better. That shows how strong these players are, and the manager. It's a huge compliment for the organization for New York City because it is the first time and always the first time is special."

City Football Group's future

Backed by the funding of Sheikh Mansour, City Football Group expects to expand its holdings in the comings years while making its lesser-known teams more formidable.

It's been reported that the company will take a majority stake in Brazilian club Bahia this year, which would give it a greater foothold in the talent-rich South American region.