Arsenal have identified Ascot Racecourse deputy CEO and commercial director Felicity Barnard as a candidate to succeed Vinai Venkatesham, according to the Sun.
The British-Indian, who joined the Gunners in 2010 as head of global partnerships is set to leave his position at the North London club next summer.
The interim period will give Arsenal enough time to work on a succession plan, and Barnard has been shortlisted.
The Royal Ascot guru worked for the Gunners in London and Singapore as the partnership development director between December 2010 and April 2014 before leaving for West Ham United.
Barnard was the Hammers’ commercial director for three and a half years before leaving and has gained more than enough experience to succeed Venkatesham at Arsenal.
The Ascot horse racing business guru is also a non-executive director for Great British Racing and England Boxing Limited – the governing body for boxing in the country.
Barnard finished from the University of Birmingham in 2004 with a degree in Material Science and was the CEO at Tie Break Tens – an exhibition tennis format in which only tie-break matches are played – for almost four years after leaving West Ham.
The 41-year-old started her career as the international sales manager at Sport for Life before working as the director of commercial partnerships at Octagon Sports Marketing agency.
Arsenal have been on the rise under Venkatesham as CEO and Barnard would have big shoes to fill if she is appointed to succeed him.
She would fancy her chances of delivering having done well in her previous jobs, and it will be interesting to see whether the Gunners choose her.