FA loses key man as Dan Ashworth leaves for Brighton

Dan Ashworth, who has served as the Football Association’s technical director since 2013, is set to leave his role to take up the same position at Premier League side Brighton and Hove Albion.

Ashworth had been viewed as a key figure within the FA, overseeing the elite men’s and women’s teams as well as FA education and coaching, bridging the gap between the business and sporting sides of the body.

His time was also marred by controversy, however. He was responsible for the appointment of Mark Sampson as the women’s national team manager, who was later sacked after evidence of “inappropriate and unacceptable” behaviour with female players in a previous role emerged.

FA former board member Dame Heather Rabbatts called Ashworth’s position “untenable” in the aftermath, claiming that Ashworth and the FA failed to carry out due diligence on Sampson.

Ashworth will remain with the FA until the end of 2018, joining up with Brighton early next year. The search for his successor will begin “immediately”, said the FA in a statement.