Everton confirm Robert Elstone is leaving club to return to rugby league

Premier League football club Everton have confirmed one of rugby league’s worst-kept secrets.. Robert Elstone is returning to rugby league to head up Super League.

Everton confirmed Elstone’s departure from the club on Tuesday night, as part of its executive management restructure. Elstone, who was previously on the board at Castleford Tigers, will begin work on June 1, TotalRL understands. He will oversee the management of Super League and its 12 member clubs.

“I have enjoyed 13 wonderful years here and feel privileged to have been able to play a significant role in the development of such a great club,” Elstone said. I will leave with many great memories, all shared with fantastic and talented colleagues. I have always said I am proud to have been given such an important custodial role and I leave a club with a very clear sense of purpose and identity; one that places its fans ‘front and centre’ in all its decisions.

“Mark Chapman described us, again, as a proper football club. To have played a part in that makes me proud. To have had the opportunity to work for a proper club, makes me feel very privileged. I would like to thank the Chairman, my colleagues on the Board and Mr Moshiri for giving me the opportunity to lead such an amazing football club. I will always be grateful for such a rare, exciting and privileged opportunity.”

Everton Chairman Bill Kenwright commented: “We are sad to see Robert leave the Club and wish him nothing but success. Robert has obviously been a passionate Evertonian since the day he first set foot here, but I have always known that his enduring love has been Rugby League.

“And we wish him well in his new role leading his favourite sport. Robert has run the Club wisely and well, throughout his time as our Chief Executive, and has become one of the most respected in the game. I will personally miss him for all the help he gave me, particularly on difficult transfer negotiations – and for the stability he brought to the Club throughout his time here. Thank you, Robert.”