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Ian Graham to leave Liverpool as FSG left with another major hole in transfer department

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Liverpool’s director of research Ian Graham has informed the club of his intention to leave at the end of the season.

Dr Graham, who heads up the club’s data analysis team – whose focus is mainly on finding value in the transfer market – has worked for the club since April 2012 and oversees the exhaustive use of analytics for scouting potential targets.

The Swansea native officially resigned from his post in June but is continuing to work his notice at the AXA Training Centre and has been working as usual this week at the Kirkby base while Jurgen Klopp’s first team enjoy some time off before flying to Dubai next week.

The news comes on the same day Julian Ward’s departure at the end of the campaign was made public. The sporting director only officially succeeded Michael Edwards last summer after around 18 months as his assistant but will step down next year.

It will leave Liverpool with two sizable holes to fill in their football operations department at a time when club owners Fenway Sports Group are exploring the possibility of an outright sale of the club they purchased for £300m in 2010.

Dr Graham joined Anfield from Decision Technology, a London-based business management consultant company, and was appointed by Edwards, who left the club last summer after a vaunted spell ast sporting director.

READ MORE: Julian Ward to leave Liverpool sporting director role as transfer overhaul considered

READ MORE: Jurgen Klopp may have already hinted at Liverpool transfer shift after surprise and disappointment of Julian Ward exit

The Welshman currently heads up a six-man team that also contains Tim Waskett, Dafydd Steele, Will Spearman, Mark Stevenson and Mark Howlett, and the half-dozen science-based academics all answer to current sporting director Ward.

Liverpool have never been keen to overly promote the work of their data analysis department in a public forum and interview requests from within the team have always been politely declined, but Graham was a guest speaker at the StatsBomb Conference at Stamford Bridge in October 2021.

“Analytics was ridiculed when I started working for Liverpool in 2012,” he said at the event. “In 2021 it’s the must-have tool for any forward-thinking football club.”

“They call it ‘Moneyball’ but it’s not a phrase we use very often. The point of Moneyball…

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