Tributes paid to EFL’s Andy Williamson OBE

16 Jun 2024
Andy Williamson

Richard Masters praises "great contribution" made by highly respected EFL administrator

The Premier League is saddened to learn that Andy Williamson OBE, one of the EFL’s most experienced and respected administrators, has passed away.

Andy - a life member of the EFL - retired from full-time employment in 2016 after 45 years of unbroken service to The Football League.

Williamson started at the EFL in 1971, when at the age of 17 he joined the Player Administration Department. He went on to serve in virtually every department within the organisation.

During his career he was involved in many of the EFL’s important moments, including the introduction of three points for a win in 1981, the League’s first title sponsorship in 1983, and the introduction of the playoffs in 1986. The playoff finals moved to Wembley in 1990 at his personal instigation.

He also provided leadership to the League and its Member Clubs in challenging circumstances, including the Bradford fire (1985), the Hillsborough disaster (1989), the formation of the Premier League (1992) and the collapse of ITV Digital (2002).

Williamson, who retired at the end of the 2015/16 season, was then awarded the Contribution to League Football Award at the EFL Awards for his incredible unbroken service to the EFL and its clubs.

He also played a key role in the formation of League Football Education (LFE) and was a trustee of the organisation.

Outstanding service to football

In 2012, he was awarded the OBE in recognition of his outstanding contribution to football.

Trevor Birch, the EFL Chief Executive, said: "Today is an extremely sad day for the EFL, league football and anyone whose path may have crossed Andy's over the years. He was a much-loved member of the EFL family, a fantastic individual who dedicated his working life to the game and he will be greatly missed by us all.

"It cannot be overstated the contribution Andy made to football in this country, the diligence he consistently applied to dealing with Member Clubs and the inspiring legacy he left. You only have to look at the many and varied areas of the EFL as an organisation and Andy's influence is there for all to see."

Premier League Chief Executive Richard Masters also paid tribute to Williamson, acknowledging his outstanding contribution to football.

“Every football organisation needs someone like Andy Williamson," said Masters. "He loved football and always put its best interests ahead of short-term gain or politics.

"He made a great contribution to our game over so many years and he will be very sadly missed.”

Everyone at the Premier League sends their condolences to Andy's family and friends during this difficult time.

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