Feyenoord GM resigns amid threats 'fearing for family'

The shock resignation, the third in five years by the club's top official, comes after a number of incidents in which Mark Koevermans had been targeted, reportedly by hardcore fans of the notoriously rowdy club.

FILE: He will officially step down on December 1. Picture:  @Feyenoord/ Twitter.

THE HAGUE, Netherlands - Feyenoord's general manager Mark Koevermans announced his resignation from the club on Wednesday after a series of threats which officials said made him "fear for him and his family."

The shock resignation, the third in five years by the club's top official, comes after a number of incidents in which Koevermans had been targeted, reportedly by hardcore fans of the notoriously rowdy club.

"The main reason for his departure is that he (Koevermans) after a series of incidents feels he can no longer properly function or make decisions without fearing the impact on the safety of him and his family," Feyenoord said in a statement.

This included an incident in September when windows at his home were smashed and his front door daubed with paint, the ANP news agency said.

Earlier this year he was also harassed by supporters, angry about plans to build a new stadium for Feyenoord and shift the club from its current base in the ageing Feyenoord Stadium commonly known as "De Kuip" (loosely translated as "The Tub"), added the Algemeen Dagblad daily tabloid.

"Feyenoord has been close to my heart since childhood," Koevermans, 53, said in a statement.

"It hurts to take a decision like this," he added.

"It's a sad day for the club," admitted Toon van Bodegom, Feyenoord's chairman of its board of commissioners.

A former professional tennis player, Koevermans started as commercial director at Feyenoord in 2009, before being appointed as general manager a decade later.

He will officially step down on December 1.

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