Chan resigns as Valencia president

Chan Lay Hoon will step down from her post as Valencia president and chairman of the board of directors from July 1. Her successor will be current executive director Anil Murthy. Valencia are currently 12th in La Liga.
Chan Lay Hoon will step down from her post as Valencia president and chairman of the board of directors from July 1. Her successor will be current executive director Anil Murthy. Valencia are currently 12th in La Liga.

After more than two years at the helm, Chan Lay Hoon announced her resignation as president of Spanish football club Valencia. The Singaporean will also step down from its board of directors.

The resignation, announced on Valencia's official website and social media platforms yesterday evening, will take effect on July 1. Anil Murthy, the club's executive director, will succeed her.

The club's statement read: "Layhoon Chan has presented her resignation from the position of chairwoman, as well as from the board of directors at Valencia CF, effective from July 1st, 2017. Anil Murthy, the current executive director at the club, will take on the role of chairman following that date."

Chan's resignation marked another tumultuous chapter at a club that has seen a raft of officials, coaches and players depart.

In October 2014, fans crowded around the Mestalla Stadium to cheer the arrival of Peter Lim, after the Singaporean billionaire took over the debt-ridden club. The new era began brightly as the youthful team finished fourth in the league in 2015, qualifying for the lucrative Champions League.

With Valencia hamstrung by Uefa's Financial Fair Play rules, the club was unable to spend big in the transfer market while several players left for other clubs.

In the last summer window, striker Paco Alcacer and midfielder Andre Gomes were sold to Barcelona, while defender Shkrodan Mustafi signed for Arsenal.

The current season began on a low note with the club suffering four consecutive defeats right from the start, resulting in the sacking of coach Pako Ayestaran.

During Christmas, Chan apologised to the fans for the team's poor results, in a video on the club's website. But in another twist, former Italy coach Cesare Prandelli lasted just 91 days on the job before quitting on Dec 30.

The Italian resigned after a dispute with the board over transfer targets. He was Valencia's third full-time coach in 2016 after Gary Neville and Ayestaran.

At the start of this year, Valencia were 17th in the 20-team table and facing the threat of relegation. The sale of key players, the coaching revolving door, and the lack of star signings led to unhappy fans staging protests against Lim and Chan.

But results have improved in recent weeks. Caretaker coach Voro has led the team to three straight victories, including Sunday's 3-1 win at Granada. The club are currently 12th in LaLiga on 39 points.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 11, 2017, with the headline 'Chan resigns as Valencia president'. Print Edition | Subscribe