Out pop star Elton John has resigned as chairman of Watford, ending a 25-year association with the English first-division club. "With the huge changes taking place in football, it is obviously necessary for the board to be led by a chairman who will be able to devote more time to the club than I have been able to," John said in a statement on the club's Web site. "The directors will now commence their search for a successor, and I am sure that they will find the right person who will be able to devote time and energy to leading the club through these difficult times," added John, who is currently on tour in Europe. John, who returned to Watford five years ago, has also resigned as a director of the club nicknamed the Hornets.
Watford, coached by former Chelsea manager Gianluca Vialli, finished last season in 14th place after a disappointing campaign. Watford's chief executive, Tim Shaw, thanked the singer for his role in overseeing the club's rise from the old fourth division in the late 1970s to the upper reaches of the first division. It finished as league runner-up to Liverpool in 1982-83 and was the losing finalist to Everton in the 1984 FA Cup final. "On behalf of the club and all its supporters, I want to thank Elton for everything he has done during both periods that he has been chairman," Shaw said in a statement. "There is no doubt that, without his vision, energy, and investment, the club would never have made the progress that it has over the last 25 years."