Martin Glenn to step down as the English Football Association Chief Executive

By Jonathan Copping, Stone King LLP, London, UK

Prior to Christmas, the English FA Chief Executive, Martin Glenn, announced his intention to resign from his role after the end of 2018-19 season. By the time his resignation takes effect, Glenn will have been in post for four years.

There has been substantial on-field success during Glenn’s tenure, including England’s senior men’s team reaching the World Cup semi-finals for the first time since 1990; as well as England under-17s and under-20s men’s teams winning their respective World Cups; and England’s senior women’s team reaching the semi-final of the FIFA Women’s World Cup in 2015 and, eventually, going on to finish third.

Glenn has also overseen successes off the field of play, including introducing a two-week mid-season break for Premier League and Football League teams in February each season. The break will be introduced from the 2019-20 season and see the fifth round of the FA Cup moved to midweek, as well as the removal of fifth round replays, being replaced with extra-time and penalties in the original tie.

However, Glenn’s tenure has not been entirely successful.

He presided over the appointment of Sam Allardyce as the England men’s coach, who subsequently resigned after 67 days and only one match in charge, following an investigation by the UK Telegraph newspaper that published results of an undercover investigation showing Allardyce negotiating a fee of £400,000 to represent an overseas firm that was hoping to profit from football transfers.

Additionally, the Eni Aluko racism and bullying claims, as well as the much-criticised potential sale of Wembley Stadium to Shadid Khan have occurred under Glenn’s time as CEO.

In announcing his intention to resign, he stated:

Running the FA has been a huge honour and a privilege but I have only been able to achieve what I have been able to thanks to everyone who works here. I would like to take this opportunity to thank all my staff for their commitment and dedication to running our national game.

“Football has a role in society far bigger than the game itself and undeniably makes us richer on many levels whether it be mass participation for both men and increasingly women, or the tremendous global appeal of our professional game. It has been a pleasure playing a part in this wonderful game”.

Praising Glenn, the chairman of the FA, Greg Clarke, stated:

On behalf of the board of the FA, I would like to thank Martin for building and leading a senior management team that has transformed our organisation. His integrity, commitment, energy and passion for football has underpinned the improvements on and off the pitch. The resulting commercial success has funded hugely significant change in the women’s game, St.George’s Park, the FA Cup and the national teams

The FA is yet to announce who will succeed Glenn.

Jonathan Copping may be contacted by e-mail at ‘JonathanCopping@stoneking.co.uk’