On this day in 2003: Peter Ridsdale resigns as Leeds chairman

Ridsdale Leeds AGM
(Image credit: Gareth Copley)

Peter Ridsdale resigned as chairman of crisis club Leeds on this day in 2003.

In a statement released to the Stock Exchange, the 50-year-old announced he was standing down after five years in the post.

Ridsdale said: “After five years as chairman I have decided to step down and hand over the reins as chairman to Professor John McKenzie who has my full support.”

Liverpool v Leeds Rio Ferdinand

Leeds had a team full of stars including Rio Ferdinand (John Giles/PA)

Ridsdale had come in for increasing criticism from fans after a season which had seen a host of top stars leave the club, as well as the departure of manager Terry Venables.

Rio Ferdinand, Robbie Keane, Lee Bowyer, Olivier Dacourt, Robbie Fowler and Jonathan Woodgate had all been sold off since David O’Leary’s exit the previous June.

The previous 14 months had been a turbulent time for Leeds. From topping the Premier League in January 2002, the Elland Road club experienced a decline which had rapidly increased since the turn of the year.

Bolton v Leeds United

But the club were relegated in 2004 (Phil Noble/PA)

Things went from bad to worse thereafter. Leeds were relegated in 2004 and even spent two seasons in League One.

The good times are finally returning, though, after the club returned to the Premier League last season under Marcelo Bielsa. They currently lie 11th in the table.

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