Business Directory

Browse the Directory

Sign Up to the Directory

FC Business Twitter
FC business Linked in
FC Business facebook
FC Business Youtube

100 Most Influential People In Football: 80-61

Fri 31st Mar 2017 | Football Governance

To celebrate 100 issues of fcbusiness magazine, we’ve compiled a list of the 100 most influential people in the business of football since 2004.

fcbusiness launched in September 2004, and since then a lot has changed in football for better and worse. The game today is very different from what it was then, with new stadium technology, increased business and operational awareness and advances in player performance to changes in football governance and financial management.

But who have been the people behind these developments? We count down from 80 to 61.


80. Peter Kenyon

Former CEO

Manchester United, Chelsea

Kenyon’s ability to deliver commercial growth at both United and Chelsea has understandably afforded him huge influence in world football.


79. Kelly Simmons

Participation & Development Director

The FA

Both architect and significant driving force behind the development of the women’s game, also a member of UEFA’s Grassroots Panel and the FIFA Women’s Committee.


78. Heather Rabbatts

Independent Director

The FA

The former Millwall executive deputy chair became the first woman to be appointed to The FA board in 2011.


77. Ken Bates


Chelsea, Leeds, Sheffield Wednesday

After selling Chelsea to Roman Ambramovich in 2003, Bates bought a stake in debt-ridden Leeds United in 2005, before the club entered administration. He would then sell the club to GFH Capital in 2012.


76. David Beckham

Former Footballer

Brand Beckham has taken the love of a footballer from the usual clothing deals to global UN ambassador status, representing the sport he loves at the top table of international diplomacy, and could soon to be an MLS franchise owner too.


75. Mike Ashley


Newcastle United

A controversial figure on Tyneside, Mike Ashley’s time in charge of Newcastle United has had its ups and downs. He has faced scathing criticism over his running of the club.


74. Mike Newell

Manager turned whistleblower

Newell’s allegations of a ‘bungs’ culture in football led to an FA inquiry headed by Lord Stevens 2006.


73. Jeffrey Webb



Disgraced Webb told The Times: “I abused my position to obtain bribes and kickbacks for my personal benefit.” He’s since been banned from all football activities.


72. Chuck Blazer

Executive Committee


A power broker in American soccer, Blazer would turn informant for the FBI’s investigation into widespread corruption at FIFA.


71. Malcolm Clarke


Football Supporters Federation

As FSF chair, Malcolm Clarke has campaigned strongly on a range of important issues affecting fans, including away ticket pricing and the 39th Game.


70. Dan Jones

Lead Partner

Deloitte Sports Business Group

An authoritative voice in football and editor of the annual review of Football Finance and the Football Money League.


69. Jack Dorsey

Founder and CEO


How much impact can 140 characters have in football? The answer is a lot!


68. Mark Zuckerberg

Founder and CEO


Whether or not it was his intention when he created Facebook, it cannot be denied the impact this platform has had on the way football engages with fans and advancements such as live streaming, will further open new broadcasting opportunities.


67. Richard Bevan


League Managers Association

Under Richard’s leadership, the LMA has become a valued defender of the increasingly beleaguered football manager. He gave sacked bosses a voice by launching the now infamous LMA statement released after they have gone. The LMA has also strived to provide improved education and support to current and past football managers.


66. Prince Ali Bin Al-Hussein


Jordan Football Association

Former FIFA vice president, Prince Ali stood against Sepp Blatter in the 2015 FIFA presidential elections but withdrew in the second round of voting.


65. Duncan Revie


Created a platform to bring together business & football.


64. Osian Roberts

Assistant Coach

Football Association of Wales

Not only Chris Coleman’s right-hand man, but also the man who has helped develop the coaching careers of former Premier League players such as Thierry Henry, at Dragon Park. A great student of the game who started his career in the Welsh Premier League and went to the US to increase his sports knowledge.


63. Fatma Samoura

General Secretary


Samoura was appointed as FIFA’s Secretary General in 2016, the first female to hold the position.


62. Neil Doncaster



Has dealt with league reorganisation and the financial issues of Rangers. Has tried to increase revenue with global TV deals and opening up the Scottish challenge cup to sides from Wales and Northern Ireland.


61. Issa Hayatou

Former President


Head of the Confederation of African Football (CAF) for 29 years, Hayatou (as longest serving FIFA ExCo member) assumed position of Acting FIFA President in 2015-2016. Has been subject of accusations of bribery.


Have your say on social media using #fcbusiness100

Top 100 people 60 to 41

Posted by: Aaron Gourley 

If you have any football business related news stories you’d like to share then please contact us – agourley@fcbusiness.co.uk

To subscribe to our range of football newsletters including news, products and jobs CLICK HERE.

Add to: Google Google | Yahoo Yahoo | Live Live | del.icio.us del.icio | Digg Digg |

Related Articles

The Football Business Academy & streetfootballworld Join Forces

Tue 29th Aug 2017 | Football Governance

The Football Business Academy and streetfootballworld join forces to further promote the idea of football for good and ensure that the next generation of football leaders embraces Corporate Social...

London FA Overhauls Board To Reflect Capitalís Diverse Football Community

Fri 18th Aug 2017 | Football Governance

The London Football Association (LFA), the largest of the County Football Associations, is undertaking a transformational overhaul of its Board and inviting applicants from diverse backgrounds to...

Karl-Heinz Rummenigge will not run for re-election as chairman of the European Club Association

Thu 10th Aug 2017 | Football Governance

Karl-Heinz Rummenigge will not run for re-election as chairman of the European Club Association. The 61-year-old informed his colleagues on the ECA board of his decision during their meeting in Madrid...

FC Barcelona Appoint New Strategic Advisor In America

Thu 13th Jul 2017 | Football Governance

Former U.S. Ambassador to Spain and Andorra signs agreement with the club to serve in the new role. FC Barcelona and James Costos, the former United States Ambassador to Spain and Andorra, have signed...