LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Monday, October 3, 2022: Liverpool players during a training session at the AXA Training Centre ahead of the UEFA Champions League Group A matchday 2 game between Liverpool FC and Glasgow Rangers FC. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Liverpool’s next staff appointment revealed as club fill high-profile role

Liverpool are set to promote from within to replace outgoing director of research Ian Graham, who will leave his post at the end of the season.

Soon after the news of Julian Ward’s resignation as sporting director, it emerged that Graham, who has served as director of research since 2012, would also be departing.

It was a major blow to Liverpool, who saw Michael Edwards leave last summer, particularly given the uncertainty off the pitch as Fenway Sports Group seek investment.

But while no leading candidate has been reported so far for the sporting director role, the club have found Graham’s replacement.

According to the Times‘ Paul Joyce, lead data scientist William Spearman will now step up to take the job of director of research.

Spearman, a Harvard graduate, has been with Liverpool since 2018, having previously held roles with the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) in Switzerland and sports analytics company Hudl in the United States.

The American has essentially served as Graham’s second in command, working alongside statistical researchers Tim Waskett and Dafydd Steele.

While his current role largely focuses on on-pitch statistics and analytics, he will be stepping up to take charge of the recruitment aspect, with a model designed to identify transfer targets beyond traditional scouting.

He will work closely with the existing team of researchers as well as Jurgen Klopp, chief executive Billy Hogan, chief scout Barry Hunter, head of recruitment Dave Fallows and Liverpool’s next sporting director.

The promotion for Spearman follows a trend of promoting from within that extends to players, coaches and into the boardroom at Anfield.

Crucially, it serves to hopefully stop the ongoing drain of high-profile staff members and lay a new foundation for success on and off the pitch.