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Darren Burgess to leave Arsenal after just two years in latest behind the scenes exit

13:44 BST 12/06/2019
Darren Burgess
The Australian arrived at the Emirates Stadium in 2017 as director of high performance after being hand-picked by Arsene Wenger

Darren Burgess is set to leave Arsenal after just two years with the Premier League club.

The 45-year-old was appointed in July 2017 as director of high performance by former chief executive Ivan Gazidis after being ‘hand-picked’ for the role by Arsene Wenger, but Goal can reveal he is now set to depart north London.

It was to be a second spell in England for the Australian, who had spent three years at Liverpool between 2010 and 2012 where he worked as head of fitness and performance under Kenny Dalglish, Roy Hodgson and Brendan Rodgers.

At the time, the appointment was viewed as a major coup for the Gunners - with Burgess lured away from Australian rules club Port Adelaide, where he had been the high performance manager

He was given a wide-ranging brief by Gazidis to oversee medical, fitness, psychology and performance analysis at the club, as well as working closely with the academy.

Burgess survived the wide-ranging cull of coaching staff last summer following Wenger’s departure and Unai Emery’s arrival, but in July it was revealed he would be working with Australian club Southern Expansion in an advisory capacity alongside the club's head of football, Craig Foster.

Southern CEO Chris Gardiner said: “Darren has worked at some of the biggest clubs in both football and AFL and to have him joining Southern is a coup and it further strengthens the solid coaching and operational framework our club already has in place.

“Working with Craig, his main priority will be to develop a high-performance structure for the club, providing support and advice for our coaches and technical staff on training routines; technical analysis; and injury prevention and recovery, with the aim of giving our players the best chance of achieving their best performances.

“Given his wealth of experience in both Australia and the UK, Darren will mentor and train our coaches and allow us to leverage his international networks and tap in to the very latest, cutting-edge sports science research.”

Arsenal insisted at the time that Burgess' new role would not impact his position in north London and that he would remain in England as normal.

But Goal has now learnt that Burgess is set to leave the club permanently, in the latest in a long line of high profile backroom departures in the past 12 months.

It is not yet clear whether he has left for a new job elsewhere.