Chelsea have announced the departure of their chief executive Ron Gourlay after ten years at the club.
Gourlay, who replaced Peter Kenyon as chief executive in 2009, has left the club to find a new challenge.
In a statement on the club's official website, the club said, "The club, and in particular the owner and directors, wish to thank Ron for his many years of service to Chelsea and support his desire to seek new challenges. Ron’s efforts have helped the club to achieve its position as one of the leading football clubs in the world."
"Pending additional appointments, Chairman Bruce Buck and Director Marina Granovskaia will assume additional executive responsibilities."
Gourlay himself added: ‘It has been a privilege to have played a role in the club’s considerable achievements both on and off the pitch over the last 10 years, but I feel the time is right to move on to other challenges. I would like to thank Mr Abramovich, the directors, the manager and players and all the staff for their support during my time at the club, and wish them much continued success in the future.’
Gourlay's tenure as chief executive saw him work with five managers, four of which he was responsible for appointing, including current manager Jose Mourinho, who made his return to the club in 2013.
He first joined the club in 2004 as owner Roman Abramovich's reign was just beginning, and helped Chelsea emerge as one of the biggest clubs Europe, winning three Premier League titles and the Champions League amongst other trophies during that time.