Anthony Fry appointed new chairman of the Premier League

Fry's appointment is a surprise in that he has had little previous connection with football,

The Premier League has announced that Anthony Fry, a businessman who sits on the BBC Trust, is to become its new chairman.

Fry's appointment is a surprise in that he has had little previous connection with football, and the 57-year-old will succeed Sir Dave Richards in July and stand down from his position as chairman of the Finance Committee of the BBC Trust.

Chelsea chairman Bruce Buck, who led the Premier League's nominations committee, said: "We have appointed an individual with the correct blend of experience, skills, attitude and demeanour to represent the best interests of the Premier League."

Other leading candidates included Football Foundation chairman Gary Hoffman, a former Coventry vice-chairman, and Sir Keith Mills, the London 2012 Olympics vice-chairman who is a director at Tottenham.

Instead, the nominations committee have chosen in Fry, who is also chairman of Dairy Crest and the Cala Group, a person who has no formal connection with football.

Buck added: "There were a number of outstanding candidates, any of whom would have made a fine Premier League chairman, but in Anthony Fry we have appointed an individual with the correct blend of experience, skills, attitude and demeanour to represent the best interests of the Premier League.

"Anthony's CV speaks for itself, but we were particularly impressed by his aptitude for and understanding of the role, as well as believing his style to be particularly well-suited to developing effective working relationships with both the member clubs and the executive of the Premier League."

Fry himself said: "The opportunity to become chairman of the Premier League is one that appealed hugely to me for obvious reasons.

"I have a deep-seated and long-held passion for sport and believe the skills and attributes I have developed throughout all aspects of my career will serve both the Premier League clubs and the executive extremely well.

"The league is one of the country's great success stories of recent times having overseen a period of rising playing standards, substantial investment in infrastructure and development, significant growth in attendances and viewing figures as well as the marked commercial success that has benefited the English game as a whole."

PA

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