Liverpool fans have been left shocked after it emerged that Julian Ward will step down from his role as the Reds’ sporting director at the end of the season.
It was in the summer that Ward replaced Michael Edwards as Liverpool’s sporting director. However, according to various outlets, including GOAL, he has informed the club of his decision to leave at the end of the current campaign.
As per GOAL, the 41-year-old’s decision has left those within the club surprised and disappointed. He, though, is firm on his stance and intends to take a break from football after he leaves.
Liverpool are not concerned about Ward’s attitude and trusts him to do his job for the rest of the season. It now remains to be seen who will replace the Englishman as the club’s new sporting director.
The Anfield outfit is said to have made an effort to convince Ward to change his mind but to no avail. Changes in the organizational structure at the club and a possible takeover have reportedly prompted him to make the decision.
It emerged earlier this month that the Fenway Sports Group (FSG) has put Liverpool up for sale. Club director Mike Gordon has since taken a back seat, with CEO Billy Hogan assuming greater power. This is said to have influenced Ward’s decision.
Ward initially joined the Reds from Manchester City in 2012, taking charge as their European scouting manager. He then moved on to the role of loan pathways and football partnership manager three years later.
The former midfielder continued to grow in stature at Anfield and eventually became the assistant to then-sporting director Edwards in 2020. The club lined him up as the eventual successor to the role.
Edwards stepped down from his role in the summer, leaving Ward to take over. However, just months into his stint as Liverpool’s sporting director, he has decided to leave the club.
The sudden nature of the news has left the Reds faithful stunned. Here is how they reacted to it on Twitter:
Some supporters want to see the club bring Edwards back to replace Ward.
Ward was responsible for the signing of Luis Diaz and Darwin Nunez at Liverpool
While Ward officially took over as the club’s sporting director in the summer, he was involved in transfers last season as well. He was largely responsible for the Reds signing Luis Diaz from FC Porto in January.
The Englishman also pulled the strings to acquire Darwin Nunez’s services from Benfica in the summer. Tying Mohamed Salah to a new deal is another important contribution of his.