EPL Chairman Sir Dave Richards to Step Down at End of Season

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured ColumnistAugust 26, 2012

LONDON, ENGLAND - AUGUST 09:  England General Manager Franco Baldini (L) and England Manager Fabio Capello (C) and Dave Richards (R) chairman of the Football Foundation and the FA Premier League watch the action during the FA Community Shield match between Manchester United and Chelsea at Wembley Stadium on August 9, 2009 in London, England.  (Photo by Phil Cole/Getty Images)
Phil Cole/Getty Images

It's been a long, impressive run for Sir Dave Richards as chairman of the English Premier League. That run will come to an end at the conclusion of the 2012-13 season, however.

From Harry Harris of ESPN:

The colourful reign of Sir Dave Richards, one of the most powerful men in English and world football since the start of the Premier League, will finish at the end of this season, ESPN can reveal.

Richards, who is currently the vice-chairman of the Football Association; chairman of the International Committee and an Executive Board member; and president of the European Professional Football Leagues' body, will stand down in his role at the Premier League at the age of 68.

To call Richards a colorful figure in English football would be an understatement. In March, he claimed that FIFA and UEFA "stole" football from England, annoyed that England's bid for the 2018 World Cup was denied.

As Harris notes in his report, he has also been the biggest proponent adding Financial Fair Play to the Premier League, essentially capping salaries for managers and owners to level the financial playing field.

Though he has stuck his foot in his mouth more than a few times in the past, Richards was an excellent ambassador for the game and did more for English football than any of his contemporaries. The Premier League is one of, if not the most powerful sporting league in the world, in large part due to his accomplishments.

It will live on without him, but certainly will miss him.

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