Arnesen set to quit Blues
Both parties were keen to stress that it is the Dane's decision to move on when his contract expires next summer. The timing of the announcement also provides the Blues with plenty of time to decide if they need to restructure their academy set-up. Arnesen's departure comes just weeks after Carlo Ancelotti's first-team coach, Ray Wilkins, was axed. Michael Emenalo, who was already on the club's coaching staff, has since been appointed as his successor. The decision to remove Wilkins from his post was taken by Chelsea, while Arnesen has simply decided it is time to move on to pastures new following the success of the club's academy. "It is always difficult to take big decisions like this, but it is entirely my decision," insisted Arnesen. "I'm looking forward to continuing my work here until such time as the club decides which way they want to move forward. "With that in mind I wanted to make the decision now, giving the club plenty of time to make the necessary plans for the end of the season. "It has been a privilege and an honour for me to work for such a big club with so many great people. "After six wonderful years I have decided to seek a new challenge when my contract expires at the end of this season. "It has been a tremendous journey and I would like to thank everyone at Chelsea, especially Roman Abramovich, for giving me the incredible opportunity to help build on the club's academy and youth system along with our greatly talented academy and scouting staff. "We are now seeing the fruits of that labour as our stated aim was to get one player from the academy into the first team each year from 2010. "We have a great crop of young players now coming through, and I feel it's the right time for me to start looking towards a new challenge. "The past two years I've worked more closely with the first team as sporting director, and it has been a joy to work alongside Carlo and this exceptionally talented squad and staff." Chelsea's youngsters are now swiftly becoming part of the first-team set-up, 17-year-old Josh McEachran in particular, and Arnesen's efforts were praised by chairman Bruce Buck. "Frank has spoken to me several times over the past year with regards to seeking new challenges, so his decision comes as no surprise to us," declared Buck. "Frank has done an exceptional job here at Chelsea over the last six years and the incredibly strong academy and youth system Frank leaves behind him is a fitting tribute to his time. "We do appreciate that he has given us plenty of notice which gives us time to consider whether and how we restructure the football department."