Ryan departs Doncaster Rovers: Ex-chairman ‘gives up 24% stake and writes off £4m loans’

John Ryan: Praised by club in a statement
John Ryan: Praised by club in a statement

John Ryan’s long and eventful association with Doncaster Rovers is over.

The former chairman - who oversaw what he calls a ‘golden decade’ in the club’s history - issued a statement yesterday revealing he has given up his 24 per cent stake in Rovers.

Ryan says he has also written off his loans - worth in the region of £4 million.

“I am very proud of my 15 years as chairman,” said Ryan in a statement.

“First saving the club from oblivion and fulfilling my four promises, namely: returning the football club to the league, building a new stadium, getting to a major cup final and returning the club to the second tier.

“The standout moments for me were beating Leeds United at Wembley, Bristol Rovers at the Millennium and beating Manchester City and Aston Villa before going out to Arsenal on penalties in the League Cup. Brentford wasn’t bad either.

“Four promotions, one cup and one relegation in ten years will always be a golden decade for Rovers.

“I have now handed my shares and loans back to the club I love and know that Terry and Dick will do a splendid job. They have both put considerable amounts of money into the club and it’s now up to the fans to back them to the hilt.

“I have supported the club since 1958 and only wish it success for the future. I ask the fans to be patient and thank them for their brilliant support I received over my years as chairman.”

Doncaster Rovers said in a statement: “The owners and the board of Doncaster Rovers would like to thank John Ryan for his time, commitment and professionalism in driving this club forward during his reign here which has now come to a close.

“John has made the decision to end his time with the club. We, as a board, are keen for you all to know that John Ryan remains a friend of us all and of Doncaster Rovers Football Club.

“The commitment of the board to the success of the club and to act in the interests of our wonderful supporters continues as we now actively look to develop the infrastructure of the first team, the youth and development, the matchday showcase and the brand of Club Doncaster. We have something very unique here and we are actively working on making the fundamental changes required to take this club to the next level, both on and off the pitch.

“This is the start of a new era and we are immensely excited about it.”