- In November 2023, KRU Esports owner Sergio Aguero announced that Lionel Messi is now co-owner of the esports league.
- In response, Rebels owner David de Gea said he's officially inviting Cristiano Ronaldo to join his league.
The esports business was valued at $1.39 billion in 2022 and the end-of-year reports for 2023 are expected to show even greater growth headed into 2024.
You know there's money to be made when world-famous athletes, like Lionel Messi, are looking to cash in on the phenomenon.
The Argentinean soccer legend just announced his partnership with Kru Esports as co-owner, teaming up with fellow countryman and field rival Sergio Aguero.
Who is KRU Esports' original owner?
While Lionel Messi is widely known on the global stage, soccer fans will also be familiar with Segio Aguero as well, who is a Premier League legend. The striker holds the record for most Premier League hat tricks ever at 12, along with the distinction of being Manchester City's top-scorer of all time to date.
While Messi and Aguero were rivals on the field, the two have been known to be good friends off of it; in fact, they used to room together. And when Argentina won the world cup in 2022, although Aguero wasn't able to participate in the games, he was present as a supporter of his national team.
Augero founded KRU in 2020, and the team participates in a ton of widely played online titles like FIFA, League of Legends, Valorant, and Rocket League, enlisting top talent for each of the respective titles to rep KRU in competitive play.
In an Instagram video highlighting all of the successes of the team along with its expansions, events, and victories, and what Aguero called an "incredible" growth since it began (including its female Valorant squad), he then told viewers he is no longer the owner of Kru.
He takes a sip of water and then coyly smiles into the camera, explaining that the reason why he's no longer KRU's owner is because the esports team now has two owners. It's at this point in the video that the camera transitions to Lionel Messi sitting at an iPad with a pair of headphones.
He simply says, "OK, let's play," before taking a sip of water himself and then looking into the camera and smiling.
It seems that the announcement has already garnered some hype around another esports team attempting to enlist another high-profile soccer talent.
Rebels owner David de Gea posted in response to Aguero's clip that he's officially inviting Cristiano Ronaldo to join his league, which could potentially create a healthy rivalry, and some buzz, around the two esports teams if they were to face off in competitive play.
Ronaldo hasn't officially given a reply to the call-out, but regardless, there are tons of people in both the esports and soccer community who are buzzing about Messi's involvement with KRU.
In fact, KRU plans on getting in Counter Strike 2, Valve's ridiculously popular and long-running multiplayer team-based first person shooter. Perhaps Messi lending his weight to KRU could help enlist some of the world's best CS2 players?
What is KRU Esports' net worth?
Sportskeeda reports that while KRU ESports has accumulated some $465,000 in tournament winnings, that influencer earnings along with merchandising and sponsorship deals from various tech and gaming companies more than likely factor into the team's total value.