The Sunday Sport has appointed Nick Appleyard as its new editor after the resignation of Paul Carter.
Carter resigned on Friday after 11 years at the paper, following the sale of Sports Newspapers to Interactive World in a £50m deal in August.
Appleyard, who has been with Sport Newspapers for nine years, is promoted from deputy editor. Deputy news editor Gary Doran has been appointed deputy editor.
Carter, who has edited the paper for six years, had recently introduced a weekly Champions and Football League Review, which is outsourced to the Press Association, and tried to reduce the title’s sleazy image.
However, the paper has continued to lose sales and was down 13.65 per cent year on year in the most recent ABC report. It was, however, up 0.15 per cent month on month to 92,803.
Carter told Press Gazette: “I had been there for 11 years and I just felt I had gone as far as I go, I just felt a bit tired.
“We were getting consultants in and that was something I didn’t necessarily agree with whole-heartedly. They should have had more confidence in the staff who were already there.
“That made my think maybe me time is up. But I’ve got nothing against anyone that has been brought in, everyone’s got to do their job.
“Paid-for tabloid newspapers are a dying market – the only way you can succeed is when you give away a DVD. It depresses me when the Mail on Sunday, which is a good paper, puts on half a million [sales] when it has a DVD and then the next week it’s gone. It can be quite demoralising.
“If they can turn circulation around it will be the miracle of Fleet Street.”
The managing director of Sport Newspapers, Andrew Fickling, said: “We wish him well. He went away on holiday, came back and made the decision.
“He’d obviously spoken to his wife about it, and it’s something that we knew he’d been contemplating for some time. He felt he’d taken it as far as he could.”
Fickling said that Appleyard wouldl be in charge of a revamped, more sport-focused Saturday edition of the Daily Sport as well as the Sunday title.
Sport Newspapers, which also produces the Daily Sport, is 50 per cent owned by David Sullivan. The company is now publicly listed.
Carter, from Manchester, began his career on the Oldham Advertiser in 1991 and then went to work for Hopkinson’s News Agency, before being taken on at Sport Newspapers in 1996. He was made deputy editor of the Daily Sport in January 1997, assistant editor in 1998, deputy in 2000 and finally editor of the Sunday title in 2003.
He now intends to write books and pursue freelance work. He has already had one book published, about the Queen Mother, and has several projects lined up.