Liverpool have announced that the club’s sporting director Michael Edwards will leave the club.
Edwards has been credited with a huge role in the Reds’ recent success, acquiring the likes of Sadio Mane, Mohamed Salah and Andy Robertson for relatively low fees in recent years.
The transfer expert, who has been in his role at Anfield since November 2016, is now set to leave the club this summer, a huge loss for Jurgen Klopp’s side given his impressive business acumen in the transfer market.
A statement from Liverpool read: “We have today announced future changes to the structure of our football operations leadership, with the news that Michael Edwards will step down as sporting director at the end of this season.
“The 42-year-old has given notice to the club’s ownership of his wish to pursue a new challenge when his contract ends, allowing for a carefully managed and orderly transition to take place.
“Julian Ward, currently assistant sporting director, will be promoted after Edwards’ departure, taking on the more senior role. The 40-year-old previously held the position of director of loan management.”
Edwards has been renowned as one of the toughest negotiators in the Premier League, often receiving hefty transfer fees for fringe players before using that windfall on first-team acquisitions.
He was able to sell the likes of Rhian Brewster, Danny Ward and Dominic Solanke for a total of £55.2 million despite the trio making a combined seven Premier League starts during their respective tenures with the club.
Arsenal fans have called for the club to hire Edwards as a replacement for current technical director Edu in the past, however, that seems unlikely given the Brazilian’s summer signings have been crucial for the Gunners on their road to a run that sees them unbeaten in their last ten outings.
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Elsewhere, Tottenham only appointed Fabio Paratici as the club’s managing director over the summer whilst Chelsea transfer guru Marina Granovskaia is also highly regarded as a top-level negotiator.
Given Edwards reportedly wants a fresh challenge, a move to Newcastle United could be on the cards given the Magpies’ new ambitious owners appear to be on the lookout for a transfer chief in the coming weeks.
However, Eddie Howe said at his unveiling as Newcastle United’s new head coach that he “knows nothing about Michael Edwards’ future”.