Premier League

Premier League chairman resigns amid Newcastle takeover controversy

Krishan Davis
Toby Cudworth
Hoffman is set to leave his post
Hoffman is set to leave his post / Visionhaus/GettyImages
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Premier League chairman Gary Hoffman has resigned just 18 months after taking the job amid a backlash from clubs following the controversial Saudi-backed takeover of Newcastle United.

A consortium consisting of Saudi Arabia's Public Investment Fund, PCP Capital Partners and RB Sports & Media completed their purchase of the Magpies for £305m in October.

The Premier League have come under intense scrutiny for their handling of the takeover, and news broke on Tuesday that Hoffman would be stepping down from his role.

Confirmation has now come via a Premier League statement, with Hoffman saying of his exit: "It has been a privilege to lead the Premier League through the last two seasons - when the spirit of English football has been more important than ever.

"Now, I have decided the time is right for me to stand aside to allow new leadership to steer the League through its next exciting phase."

The Premier League added their gratitude for Hoffman's service and said he'd led the league during the most challenging period in its history - departing with the organisation now in a stronger place.

His departure comes with a wide-ranging review of the regulation of English football due to be published next week by former sports minister Tracey Crouch.

Therein Crouch will recommend that the Independent Regulator for English Football (IREF) is set up, which will give new powers to regulate the governance and ownership of professional football clubs.

Hoffman and the Premier League came under fire for not keeping other sides in the loop about the progress of Newcastle's takeover. Some club executives were aggrieved that the purchase was allowed to go through at all in light of the Saudi regime's poor human rights record, although those complaints fell on deaf ears on the grounds of confidentiality obligations.

Hoffman currently chairs online bank Monzo, having previously worked for Barclays and chaired Visa Europe.

The 61-year-old assumed the Premier League role in June 2020 before English top-flight football's restart following the first coronavirus lockdown.

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