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Resignation of David Pleat, appointment of Frank Arnesen

Posted on 19 May 2004  - 12:00

Tottenham Hotspur (Spurs) Football Club is located in North London. The club is also known as Spurs. Tottenham's home ground is White Hart Lane. The club motto is Audere est Facere (To dare is to do).

The Club today announced that David Pleat, Director of Football, will step down from his current role and Board position at the Club with effect from 31st July. The Club also announced that Frank Arnesen, 47, would be joining the Club as Sporting Director, with effect from 1st July. This is a senior management role reporting to the Board.

Commented Chairman Daniel Levy: "I have spent a considerable amount of time, and spoken to many heads of major European clubs and International managers, assessing what Tottenham needs to change in order to lay the best foundations for success.

"For many years now, not just for the time I have been here, this Club has failed to achieve a League position commensurate with the financial investment that has been made in the team.

"Quite clearly we are operating in an international market and it is vital that we put in place an appropriate management infrastructure and expertise to achieve our aspirations. It is important that we have stability and a consistent strategy for First Team and youth development. I firmly believe that this can be best served under a new continental structure and that Frank Arnesen is immensely qualified to oversee this for us.

"This decision is the result of a major review and it would be wrong to align it simply to this last season when David took over as caretaker manager.

"I should like to thank David for his contribution to our Club over the years. I think it is too easy in the business of football to forget to give credit where it is due and David has brought young players to this Club who have gone on to establish themselves in the first team squad. He shall be a welcome visitor to the Boardroom on matchdays to watch their progress."

David Pleat said: "I have enjoyed working at the Club and I wish everyone much success in the future. I particularly hope that the younger element can go on to major achievements. They represent an excellent foundation for the Club. I am sure that Frank Arnesen will prove a most successful appointment."

A former Danish International of some note (52 caps, scoring 14 goals), Frank Arnesen joins from PSV Eindhoven, where he has had responsibility as Technical Director for all footballing issues including scouting, youth development and player transfers.

He joins Tottenham in a role which will see him in charge of all matters relating to the footballing side of the Club and the recruitment of key personnel. He will have responsibility for developing and implementing youth, scouting, medical and international policy. Additionally he will oversee the trading of players in consultation with the First Team management.

"Frank’s knowledge of the international transfer market is excellent and no club can operate without that in today’s market place. He has a proven track record of working successfully alongside some of the world’s top managers. The appointment of our first team management progresses as before and will be announced in due course," continued Daniel Levy.

Frank Arnesen enthused: "I am delighted to get the opportunity to work for a big club like Tottenham and in the most exciting league in the world. A club of this stature should be competing regularly for honours and that is what we shall strive to achieve. I know the club because I played for Anderlecht in the UEFA Cup final at White Hart Lane in 1984 and was beaten on penalties. I should say though that I left the pitch after 80 minutes when we were still 1-0 up!"

During over 10 years in his role at PSV Eindhoven, the Club has qualified for the Champions League every season (the only Club in Holland to do so) and won 12 major domestic honours. Fluent in five languages, Frank Arnesen has worked closely with coaches such as Dick Advocaat (current Dutch National Coach), Sir Bobby Robson (whom he brought back to the Club as manager in 1998) and most recently with Guus Hiddink (World coach of the Year 2002).

Known for his ability to discover and develop young talent, Frank Arnesen brought a whole host of players to the Club who went on to perform at the highest level including, Boudewijn Zenden (on loan at Middlesbrough from Chelsea), Jaap Stam (AC Milan), Arjen Robben (who will join Chelsea from PSV this summer), Philip Cocu (Barcelona) and Eidur Gudjohnsen (Chelsea). In addition he was also credited by Sir Bobby Robson with the discovery and signing of Ronaldo (Real Madrid) and Ruud van Nistelrooy (Manchester United).