The Premier League has named Guardian Media Group CEO David Pemsel as its new Chief Executive.
The 51-year-old replaces executive chairman Richard Scudamore, who drove the leagues huge commercial success over the last 20 years before retiring in November 2018.
It ends a drawn out process to fill the post which saw Susanna Dinnage accept the job then but withdrew just before she was due to start to return to her old post with the Discovery television group. Senior BBC executive Tim Davie was also reported to have turned down an offer at the start of the year.
Pemsel was described by Bruce Buck, Chairman of Chelsea Football Club and Chairman of the Premier League Nominations Committee as the 'ideal person to lead the business' having turned the Guardian's news business back into a profit-making operation for the first time in 20 years in 2019.
Buck said: We are delighted to welcome David to the Premier League. His straightforward style and personal integrity make him an ideal person to lead the business.
At the Guardian, he has shown strong leadership through a period of change and transformation.
Returning the group to profit is an impressive achievement and has demonstrated that he can develop and execute a transformational plan in an ever-changing business landscape.
In addition, he has worked with the big players in digital and media and has managed diverse groups and constituencies.
?We are looking forward to working with David and are sure he will be a great asset to the Premier League.?
Pemsel, a Chelsea fan, will take up his new role no later than April 2020, with interim chief executive Richard Masters reverting to his post as managing director at that point.
He said: I am thrilled to have been offered this incredible opportunity.
The Premier League is the most-watched football league in the world and I am very excited to be a key part of that.
As a football fan, I understand just how important the game is to supporters and our national identity and I am honoured to take the helm of such an influential and prestigious organisation.
"I have enjoyed my eight years at Guardian Media Group and want to thank everyone for their support and friendship, but now is the perfect time for me to take on the next challenge. I am really looking forward to meeting the team and working with them on the evolution of the Premier League."
The Premier League hope Pemsel's strong broadcasting background, having also served as marketing director at ITV before moving to the Guardian, will help it continue to thrive in a changing media environment, after Scudamore helped secure a series of record breaking domestic and overseas television deals.
Sky and BT Sports agreed to pay ?4.64billion to show 160 games between 2019-20 and 2021-22, while the overseas rights earned the league a further .2billion.