Christian Purslow: Aston Villa appoint ex-Liverpool MD as chief executive

Christian Purslow
Christian Purslow is a Cambridge graduate with an MBA from Harvard Business School

Aston Villa have appointed former Liverpool managing director Christian Purslow as their new chief executive.

Purslow will replace Keith Wyness, who was suspended in June and is now suing the Championship club for constructive dismissal after he decided to leave.

Aston Villa say the 54-year-old will "take over the day-to-day running of the club with immediate effect".

Villa suffered financial issues after losing last season's play-off final to Fulham, including an unpaid tax bill.

But billionaire businessmen Wes Edens and Nassef Sawiris bought a stake in the club on 20 July, with owner Dr Tony Xia becoming co-chairman.

"I am delighted to welcome Christian, who will work closely with Nassef, Wes and myself to move the club in a better direction. I look forward to seeing him shine at our football club," Dr Xia said in a statement.

"This is an important step on our journey to return Aston Villa back to the elite of English football," added Sawiris and Edens.

Purslow has a history of improving the commercial success of clubs - as managing director he negotiated Liverpool's initial shirt sponsorship deal with Standard Chartered in 2009, which was worth £80m at the time.

He left Liverpool in October 2010 after helping facilitate the £300m sale of the club to current owners Fenway Sports Group.

He joined Chelsea as head of global commercial activities in October 2014 and negotiated a number of lucrative commercial deals, including a £900m agreement with sportswear firm Nike and a £200m shirt sponsorship contract with Yokohama Tyres.

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