The longtime couple announced they are investing in two Italian soccer teams, Campobasso 1919 and Ascoli FC, and will take on a co-ownership role with Campobasso to help restore its success in the Italian soccer league.
"The Campobasso project is the quintessential underdog story," Consuelos, 51, said in a statement on the announcement, shared with PEOPLE. "When I sat with [North Sixth Group's chairman] and heard the story about these fans being at risk of losing the sport they love, Kelly and I wanted to get involved and be part of the solution."
Campobasso 1919 — founded over 100 years ago and the most popular team in the Molise region of Southern Italy — has found some success, climbing up to the second tier of the Italian soccer league and defeating some of the most successful and well-known teams such as Juventus, AC Milan and Lazio. The team was even promoted to the third tier of the league in 2021 for the first time in 32 years.
However, the team suffered a stroke of bad luck when it was denied re-entrance to the league in 2022 because of "administrative failures." It was unknown whether the team would be able to compete again for their fans in the 2022-23 season, until it was purchased by North Sixth Group.
Consuelos and Ripa, 52, said they would work with North Sixth Group to build the team's media presence, and increase its commercial activities and sponsorship opportunities.
"This is a story of redemption, rebirth and hope that will be playing out on the football pitches of Italy, and we are truly proud to play a role as co-owners," said Consuelos.
Matt Rizzetta, Chairman of North Sixth Group, said the company is "thrilled" by Consuelos and Ripa's commitment to the team in another statement.
"Beyond football, we view Campobasso 1919 as a platform to represent the immigrants, ex-pats, and underdogs across the world who can relate to the pain and suffering these fans have endured, but also to the importance of perseverance on the journey to achieving dreams" Rizzetta said.
Campobasso 1919 will start off in the fifth tier of the new season, but North Sixth Group said it has plans to help the team climb up the ladder of the Italian soccer league.
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Consuelos and Ripa also invested in Ascoli FC, a team currently in Serie B of the Italian soccer league, through North Sixth Group. North Sixth Group said additional details on Consuelos and Ripa's investment on Ascoli FC will be revealed in upcoming weeks.
Ascoli FC has seen some success in recent years, finishing sixth last season in Serie B and qualifying for the promotion playoffs to Serie A before getting defeated.