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Wednesday 20 February 2013

Gill to stand down as Manchester United chief executive

Chief executive to leave post after 10 years this summer and will be replaced by Ed Woodward

  • David Gill pays homage to Sir Alex Ferguson on his 25th anniversary as United manager

After 10 years in the role, David Gill is to step down from his post as chief executive of Manchester United plc, the club have announced.

"After 10 years in charge I believe it is appropriate for someone new to pick up the baton"
David Gill

The 55-year-old, who was appointed the vice chairman of The Football Association in October 2012 and has been nominated as its candidate in the upcoming UEFA Executive Committee elections in May 2013, will resign his position with effect from 30 June this year.

Gill joined the Man Utd board in February 1997 as finance director and has been its chief executive since September 2003. He will, however, remain a director of the club, while executive vice chairman Ed Woodward will assume Gill's responsibilities.

"It has been the greatest privilege to serve Manchester United for 16 wonderful years - the last 10 of which as its chief executive," Gill told the club's website. "I have worked alongside the finest manager in the history of the game and been part of what I consider to be the best club in the best sport in the world.

"It has been a very hard decision because I love this club and, as the fans' banner says, it is 'more than a religion'. I've experienced some incredible highs, such as the treble in 1999 and the League and Champions League double in 2008, and lows, like losing the title with the last kick of the season last year. But that is what makes this club and this sport so compelling.

Changing of the guard

"However, I have always been conscious of the fact that, as a member of staff, I was always just a temporary custodian of this marvellous institution. I am also of the view that all businesses need to refresh themselves with new management and ideas and after 10 years in charge I believe it is appropriate for someone new to pick up the baton. 

"I’m delighted Ed has accepted the role. I have worked with him for more than seven years and in that time he has built up knowledge of football matters, which will hold him in good stead for the future.

"I am looking forward to continuing my involvement on the club board. And I hope to be able to make a contribution to the game on a wider national and European level."

"David has been a magnificent chief executive"
Sir Alex Ferguson

United manager Sir Alex Ferguson said: "I have been at United for over 26 years and for 23 of those years my boss has been one of only two men: Martin Edwards, who brought me to the club, and David Gill. I have enjoyed working with both.

"David has been a magnificent chief executive. Of course, we have had a million arguments, but I have always enjoyed them because I know that David has two great qualities: he is straight and he always puts Manchester United first. No disagreement is ever personal with him. He always wants the best for United, whether it's the players, the training ground or the staff.

"He is someone that has a reputation for decency and integrity and a man that has engendered the loyalty and total commitment of staff. He has been an invaluable confidant and adviser in the last eight years. I am very pleased he has agreed to remain on the board, so that his experience and counsel is not lost to us.

"I hope that the decision he has made will be to the benefit of the game in Europe as a whole, as he seeks election to UEFA's Executive Committee."

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Key Points

  • Manchester United chief executive David Gill is to step down in June
  • Gill's duties to be undertaken by executive vice chairman Ed Woodward
  • The 55-year-old hopes to be elected on to the UEFA Executive Committee in the May elections