AS Monaco Appoints Fomer Nigeria Player, Emenalo As Sporting Director


French Ligue 1 club, AS Monaco have appointed former Nigerian international, Michael Emenalo, as their new sporting director.

Emenalo resigned from a similar position at English champions Chelsea on 6 November, citing a desire to spend more time with his young family as one reason why he left the post he had occupied since 2011

The French Ligue 1 defending champions confirmed the appointment on Monday afternoon and said that the 52-year-old will take charge of all sporting matters at the club. They currently sit in third place in the French top-flight standings.

Emenalo will now report to Monaco vice-president Vadim Vasilyev in his new role of sporting director at the club.

Statement issued by AS Monaco, published on its website:

AS Monaco are pleased to announce the appointment of Michael Emenalo to the role of Sporting Director. He will take responsibility for all sporting matters, under the leadership of Vadim Vasilyev, Vice-President & CEO.

The former Nigerian international, 52, arrives from Chelsea where he held a similar role, having established himself as a highly respected figure at the London club.

In ten years with the Blues, during which they won three Premier League titles (2010, 2015, 2017), three FA Cups (2009, 2010, 2012), the League Cup (2015), the Europa League (2013) and most importantly the Champions League (2012), Michael Emenalo held a number of positions before being promoted to Technical Director in 2011.

Then responsible for the club’s recruitment, he oversaw the arrivals of Eden Hazard, Thibaut Courtois and N’Golo Kanté, among others.

During his time in London, he also introduced a talent identification and performance system that made the Chelsea Academy one of the most competitive in Europe (winning the Youth League twice in 2015 and 2016).

With expert knowledge of the French and European markets, Michael Emenalo will now be providing AS Monaco with the benefit of his skills.

Vadim Vasilyev, Vice-President & CEO:
“I have been following Michael Emenalo’s work for some time and am delighted to have him here at Monaco. I was closely involved in bringing him in.
His know-how in the scouting network, and the technical experience he has gained at one of the most successful clubs of recent years, are the reasons that led us to offer him this ambitious challenge.
This appointment is a further sign of our ambition and our desire to be as competitive as possible.”

Michael Emenalo, Sporting Director:
“This is a wonderful opportunity for me in a high quality project.
AS Monaco has shown great progress for several seasons and I am convinced that the future will be just as ambitious. Vadim Vasilyev’s willingness to see me join AS Monaco was decisive for me, it was a natural choice for me after my decision to leave Chelsea.”

Emenalo was born in Aba, Abia State on 14 July 1965. He began his footballing career in Nigeria, playing for Enugu Rangers and later Nigeria, before moving to play in the United States for Boston University from 1986 to 1989.

He was in the Nigerian team that faced Argentina in the 1994 World Cup.

After leaving the US, he played for Molenbeek in Belgium, Eintracht Trier in Germany and Notts County F.C in England. He later returned to the US, where he was part of the original allocated players for Major League Soccer. He spent two seasons (1996–97) with the San Jose Clash. After that, he played with Lleida in Spain and Maccabi Tel Aviv in Israel.

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