Ansell Departs

A statement to the Stock Exchange said that Ansell, who was also the club's financial director had left the club: "Today, by mutual consent, Mark Ansell left Aston Villa plc.

"Aston Villa plc has instructed a leading national firm of head hunters to appoint a chief executive replacement for Mark who Aston Villa thank for all his efforts during his six years with the company and wish him all the success he richly deserves in the future.

"Doug Ellis, chairman, will relinquish his role as chief executive in the New Year when the new chief executive takes up his post."