Ivan Gazidis

Ivan Gazidis (born 13 September 1964) is the Executive of Italian Serie A club AC Milan.

Ivan Gazidis
Born (1964-09-13) 13 September 1964 (age 58)
Johannesburg, South Africa
CitizenshipSouth African
Alma materUniversity of Oxford
OccupationSports business executive
TitleChief executive


Gazidis is of Greek origin, but was born in Johannesburg, South Africa. At the age of 4 moved to Manchester in the United Kingdom and attended independent Manchester Grammar School. Being an adopted Mancunian from a young age, he supported Manchester City. Later he attended St Edmund Hall at the University of Oxford, where he was twice awarded a blue playing football against Cambridge in 1984 and 1985.[1] He graduated with a degree in law in 1986 and in 1992 he moved to the United States to work for Latham & Watkins.[2]

In 1994, he joined the founding management team of Major League Soccer, becoming in 2001 its deputy commissioner. He oversaw MLS's key strategic and business decisions and its marketing arm, Soccer United Marketing, of which he was president.[3] He also helped promote the Mexican Football Federation and the CONCACAF Gold Cup.[3]

In November 2008 Gazidis accepted the post of chief executive of Arsenal, a post he formally took up from 1 January 2009.[4] He succeeded former managing director Keith Edelman and was expected to take over many of the roles formerly undertaken by ex-vice-chairman David Dein.[5]

In 2017–18, he oversaw significant personnel changes at the top of the club in preparation for then manager Arsene Wenger's departure, which was announced in April 2018.[6] Gazidis spearheaded the search for a new Manager, eventually hiring Unai Emery in May.

Upon announcing his departure, it was revealed his successors would be Vinai Venkatesham as Managing Director, and Raul Sanllehi as head of football.[7]

On 18 September 2018, Gazidis announced that he would be leaving Arsenal to join A.C. Milan.[8] He took up the role on 1 December 2018.[8] During January 2020 transfer window, Gazidis vetoed the arrival of Zlatan Ibrahimovic in Milan despite his free agent status, citing his age as the main reason. He also opted to terminate Gonzalo Higuain's loan deal six months in advance. On the other hand, he approved the transfers of Krzysztof Piątek and Lucas Paquetá, both carried out by Leonardo.[9] In his first season as the club's CEO, the team finished fifth in Serie A, which was its best result in six years. And just 2 seasons after, the team finished second in Serie A season 2020-2021; making them qualify to the UEFA Champions League for the first time since season 2012–2013. The next season A.C. Milan won the Serie A.


  1. ^ "Oxford University Association Football Club Varsity Alumni". OUAFC.
  2. ^ "Ivan Gazidis named CEO of Arsenal". MLSNet.com. 26 November 2008. Archived from the original on 13 July 2009. Retrieved 30 May 2016.
  3. ^ a b Wilson, Jeremy (26 November 2008). "Arsenal end search for new chief executive with appointment of Ivan Gazidis". Daily Telegraph. London. Archived from the original on 21 April 2013. Retrieved 5 May 2010.
  4. ^ "Arsenal name new chief executive". BBC Sport. 28 November 2008. Retrieved 5 May 2010.
  5. ^ "Arsenal appoint MLS deputy commissioner Ivan Gazidis as chief executive". The Times. London. 26 November 2008. Retrieved 5 May 2010.
  6. ^ "Arsenal Hires Outgoing Barcelona Director of Football Raul Sanllehi - The Page Magazine". 28 November 2017.
  7. ^ Benge, James (18 September 2018). "Gazidis leaves Arsenal to join AC Milan". www.standard.co.uk.
  8. ^ a b "Ivan Gazidis: Arsenal chief executive leaves club to join AC Milan". 18 September 2018 – via www.bbc.co.uk.
  9. ^ "AC Milan News - Latest and real time updates". AC Milan.