Emenalo ends decade-long association with Chelsea

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Michael Emenalo

London, November 7: Former Premier League champions Chelsea's Technical Director Michael Emenalo has quit his post.

The 52-year-old left Stamford Bridge after playing a key backroom role for a decade.

The former Nigeria international has been one of Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich's key lieutenants, overseeing player and manager recruitment during a turbulent period during which he worked with 10 head coaches.

"This has been a very difficult decision to make, but one I believe is right for both myself and my family, and the club," Emenalo said in a statement.

British media reported that relations had been strained between Emenalo, director Marina Granovskaia and manager Antonio Conte, who made clear his unhappiness at the club's failure to sign top-level players in the last transfer window.

Chelsea failed to secure Conte targets Romelu Lukaku, Leonardo Bonucci and Alex Sandro.

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Ross Barkley also declined moves to Stamford Bridge in the frantic final few days of the transfer window.

Chelsea chairman Bruce Buck paid rich tributes to Emenalo, "It is with regret that the owner and board of directors accepted Michael's resignation this week. He has had a tremendous impact on the club over the past 10 years and this is evident in everything we have achieved.

"We are sorry to see him go but understand his desire to move on and explore new challenges."

Story first published: Tuesday, November 7, 2017, 11:33 [IST]
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