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Julian Winter appointed new Chief Executive

Swansea City is pleased to announce the appointment of the highly experienced Julian Winter as the club’s new chief executive.

Winter, 54, replaces Trevor Birch, who has left his post with the club.

He will oversee the day-to-day matters of the club and will take up his position later this month. 

A Swansea City ownership statement read: "We are pleased to welcome Julian as the club's new chief executive. 

“As part of the appointment process we received significant positive input from many constituencies within the club and those who have worked with him at his prior clubs.

“His extensive industry experience and collaborative leadership style will be a valued addition as we embark on this next chapter."

On his appointment, Winter added: “I’m obviously delighted to have been selected as the new CEO at Swansea City. 

“I look forward to getting started at the club on a day-to-day basis, meeting the staff across the club and helping lead Swansea City to a successful future on and off the field.”

Winter built his reputation through a number of key executive roles in recent years and is held in high regard within the footballing industry.

Most recently, he spent four seasons as the Huddersfield Town chief executive. Appointed as a director at the John Smith’s Stadium in 2016, he played a key role in helping to guide the Terriers to Premier League promotion under former boss David Wagner.

Previously, Winter served for three years as Watford’s chief executive, where he built a strong working relationship with former Swans boss Brendan Rogers.

He has also held successful chief executive roles at Sheffield United and Notts County.

After a playing career ended with over 100 appearances for his home-town club Huddersfield, Scunthorpe (loan) and Sheffield United, Winter graduated from Sheffield Hallam University with a first-class honours degree in leisure and recreation management before becoming a community director at Grimsby, Sheffield Wednesday and Watford.


  • Fingers crossed this appointment doesn’t begin the winter of our discontent.

  • edited September 2

    The timing of events over the last 3 months dont fill me with confidence. Logically the decision on TB leaving and JW coming in would have happened a few months ago. That seems to coincide with Leon's decision to step away from the club. Probably he was told by TB(?) that he would going, and Leon who already wanted some time off, took the reasonable decision he didnt want to continue without TB, so when then.

    That sounds a reasonable assessment of events and isnt too conspiracy theorist.

    What concerns me is the reason why TB left, as only a month(?) ago we hear of the new US investment/loan/covertible into shares. That deal would have taken months to develop and therefore looking back we see another confluence of events with Leon leaving.

    Now that doesnt mean the deal is bad for the club as it may just not be what was agreed with TB when he arrived so that became the trigger for TB to decide to leave.

    As for Julian Winter, he seems a standard championship type CEO (not chairman according to the club) but definitely a B-lister compared to TB.

    So what does this mean for SC, the coaching team and the players.

    Well the two men who appointed Steve Cooper and Andy Scott are now gone and they will naturally be looking over their shoulders. That could easily transmit to the players quickly if results arent good. Also I dont know any new CEO who doesnt want to make changes and quite quickly as he will have a different view of how the club should be run.

    So I predict that unless Steve Cooper gets us into the playoff final or better this season he will be gone by next Summer. If results arent good during the season, he wont get the time TB would have given him and he will be gone before then.

    A number of players will also now be thinking do I want to stay. I did predict last month that Connor and Matt were likely to be the target of transfer bids. Now I think one or both will be gone this transfer window. Ayew will be gone as well.

    With performances, albeit with weakened teams, not being impressive during preseason, unless we manage somehow quickly get back to playing with some form. I worry for this season already.

    Clearly we are now at another turning point, I hope SC and the coaching team can pull the squad together, if not it wont be a good turning point.

  • The reason he probably left was , going to a top 6 club , with a fantastic new stadium , top manager who wins trophies , world class players and a chance to be close to his family , not to difficult to understand ,

    Looks as if Birch would have been involved with the Mr Winter appointment , let's see how things work out ,

  • Let’s hope that TB is the only one who has been lured away with no squad departures on the cards. The squad remainIng as it is will come as some relief against the backdrop of what has transpired over the last week. I just can’t see there being much in the way of a true game plan from the owners. The talk of the academy being the well from which we draw upon our best talent has been scuppered prematurely by one season. In light of this the likelihood of the conveyer belt model for upcoming seasons being in place has been eroded by this key decision to axe our Category 1 status. Maybe the owners didn’t listen to Birch over the problems that a downgrading of the Academy would cause. However my feeling is that the offer from Spurs was simply to good an offer to refuse and any other factors were superfluous to this. My hope is that the shifting sands of Swansea have settled for now in readiness for the upcoming season and there are no further big announcements.

  • Trevor Birch was respected throughout the club, and throughout the game, generally. Tough when needed to be but always ready to embrace the fans at forums, in lounges in the Jack Zone and at away games whenever possible, his communication skills was refreshing and I believe we have lost someone that was extremely good for our club at a time when we needed his expertise, however, I wish Julian Winter all the best going forward, the king is dead, long live the king.

  • complete speculation Jackraven. It's always sad to see someone like Trevor Birch leave but tying it to Leon taking a break in some kind of sinister way is stretching credulity. Might be better to welcome the new CEO and show a little bit of trust in the club at his appointment. Looking for trouble is a bit unconstructive and only welcomes more speculation which we could do without. We're on a good footing with no looming financial crisis, we've had a good recruitment of players, and just had a successful season after major restructuring. I tend to think it'll be ok. Trevor birch was never high profile and hope Mr Winter keeps up the same background efficiency.

  • I think Jackraven is the new Agatha Christie or Wilbur Smith. Excellent story telling.

  • @Pablo

    Not speculation but awareness of how the world works, how timelines work and experience of new CEOs being introduced into workplaces.

    The alternative is 'heads in the sand' approach. Personally I'd rather be considering what might be going on behind the scenes and what that might mean rather than pretend everything is perfect in the best of all possible worlds.

    Also it's not the Club I dont trust, its the owners who dont fill me with confidence. Considering the meaningless rhetoric we have heard from them over the years I believe I have plenty of justification.

    One of the good things about Trevor Birch was he didnt need to be here and therefore couldnt be easily manipulated, as he could just leave. He was always going to leave at some point, but now he has decided to leave.

    The new CEO has a blank page in my view, but any reasonable assessment means he doesnt have the same track record and experience of Trevor Birch. Also he is not Chairman but CEO so he wont have the overall level of control. Presumably one of the Board Members will be appointed Chairman.

    Part of the reason I am concerned about changes that will be made at the club is the comment included in the Club statement on Trevor Birch leaving.

    'Moving forward, we have great confidence in our management team to continue the momentum we have built heading into the coming season as we work on a new management leadership structure.'

    My italics but for me that isnt just a comment about bringing in a new CEO.

    I've done my research on our new CEO and whilst he has a blank page from me, and I'll judge on what is achieved, there are plenty of fans at his old clubs who are less than complimentary on his tenure at their clubs.

    Finally we still need a CB, 2 WBs and a striker asuming no first team squad players leave. If any do then we will need their replacements in addition. TB, AS and SC have had a good recruitment window so far. The open question is will JW,AS and SC continue the work and fill those places or will we start going backwards.

    Lets catch up at the end of the transfer window and see how it has turned out. My fingers are crossed.

  • edited September 2

    ok Jackraven I get you, but it's still an opinion based on speculation....and as for rhetoric from the board? don't remember that at all. It's not 'heads buried in sand' either to be positive, it's showing a bit of trust in the past 2 seasons and progress made. I realise there are plenty of posters who'll subscribe to your opinion, so not going to call it out with certainty, but how much blather has there been since relegation, and none of it has come to pass? My position is to keep a bit of balance over change. I think Trevor Birch was brought in to handle the major restructuring and maybe always had only a temporary tenure in his mind. That's my bit of speculation. Things change. we should embrace it perhaps, though I tend to think it's a Welsh thing to always feel the victim and expect the worst outcome. Self- fulfilling prophecy comes to mind!😉

    There's no doubt that Tottenham is more of his stature as his reputation grows as a very good CEO with integrity, but let's just welcome the new guy and be a bit more charitable for a change and not think the worst.

  • I wonder if Colin or Jasper have some knowledge of Julian Winter?

  • Leon leaving and Birch leaving are 100% not connected.

    I am not going to say how I know. but the source of my info is unquestionable. So please take this as fact, and not draw Leon into the speculation.

  • Thanks Mark I never thought it was , for me after 20 years in the game time for a break , time for his family , have a normal life away from football ,

  • It would be good to see the timeline on when the Trust spoke to Winter - as they have admitted to having had several meetings with him prior to his appointment.

    The position Birch held is not normally one that has a short notice period. They are normally months in the making - unless there is a breach, or he had something unusual in his contract allowing him to go quickly in certain circumstance.

    And the fact they had a man ready to take his place, means it is at least weeks, if not months that the conversations for a replacement would have started.

    Whether Birch leaving is connected to the new investor is also a good question.

    I dont think the investment would have been a quick conversation, either. So very possibly connected to Birch deciding to go to pastures, especially as Silverstein made the following statement when his investment was announced:

    "By joining the club's board, it will allow me to become actively involved. It's something I am passionate about and, as such, I will be applying a lot of focus on the football club going forward.''

    The idea that Birch was going to loose his autonomy could quite easily have been a significant factor in his decision making.

    Or, it could just be, that Birch, being locked down in Swansea during Covid, and being unable to travel to see his family during this time, is in fact the reason for his move. It is certainly an understandable one - and I say this living 200+ miles from my family, and having not seen them since March.

  • @Pablo @Mark_Jack_London

    Happy to stand corrected on the Leon element, but also happy to stand my comments. I believe there are management changes in the offing this season. I dont know what they are, but the new investment/loan/converting into shares, and the new guy's involvement at the board are part of the changes coming in my opinion.

    Often decisions, TB leaving, are rarely single factorial, but multi-factorial. The simple narrative comes out as press statements. We are quite entitled to look beyond them to try and understand what else might be involved.

  • Silverman appointed Chairman!!

  • Mr Winter is being very quiet.

    I haven't seen him give an interview yet and haven't seen any mention of him in any Swans-related media reports.

  • Starts end of the month

  • We need to see Mr Winter (a) engage positively with the Trust (b) keep up the momentum of TB in communicating with the Jack Army.

    If he fails to do these things I will already be judging him as a step backwards.

    We welcome him warmly and hope that we have the right guy. He has a tough act to follow.

  • Won't make much difference, to be fair to Trevor Birch, he engaged with the trust and every fan he could. It didn't save him, once the owners wanted him out. Jumped before he was pushed

  • lol. really? took a job near home that he couldn't refuse Not as if he left to join Orient .

  • Not true, he didn't want to leave but the writing was on the wall, luckily, Spurs were looking for someone of Birch's ability.

  • That isn’t true. He was offered the job, then spoke with the owners who give their blessing to him to leave. Why let the truth get in the way of a good rumour

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