Michael Edwards has provided a glowing review of his successor, Julian Ward’s, abilities and suitability for the role of sporting director.
The 42-year-old is set to step down from his employment at Liverpool, believing change will be beneficial both personally and for the Merseyside-based outfit as a whole.
“As my wife would testify, I’m not great at the here and now. I’ve always looked ahead and for the past couple of years I’ve known that the time for me to leave this role was approaching and I think it is entirely fitting that the person to take over from me is Julian Ward,” the Englishman wrote in an open letter to the fans, as reported by liverpoolfc.com.
“As was the case with myself, I doubt you will hear much from him, but on this occasion I will speak on his behalf in the knowledge what I have to say will be greeted with widespread agreement by everyone who has come across him both inside and outside the club.
“Julian has been building up the skill set for this role for many years and there are countless elements of his development that could be highlighted, none more so than the outstanding work he did in creating our loan department six years ago.
“It was during this period that he not only laid the groundwork for a long-term process that continues to provide significant benefit to players and club, he also accelerated his learning on many of the aspects you deal with as a sporting director.
“Last year, he took on the role of assistant sporting director and over the past 12 months he has been introduced to other facets of the role that are vital to its success.
Again, Julian’s elevation is wholly in keeping with what I believe to be a key factor of the Liverpool Way, with promotion from within ensuring expertise, experience and institutional knowledge are cherished in the way that they should be.”
The former performance analyst at Portsmouth enjoyed a highly successful period overseeing the club’s transfer policy, helping bring in a swathe of the Reds’ current top-performing, world-class talents currently excelling under Jurgen Klopp’s tutelage.
Considering the calibre of the names Edwards has brought in, one can entirely understand the apprehension some fans are feeling about the executive’s impending departure.
That having been said, the revival an important element of the old boot room – continuity – can only mean good things for the long-term running of the club.
Having spent a year already learning directly from our incumbent sporting director, we’re very much looking forward to seeing where Julian Ward can take the role and, hopefully, help reignite the ‘Liverpool Way’.