Wigan chairman Dave Whelan.

Wigan chairman Dave Whelan.

Wigan have announced that Dave Whelan has resigned as the club’s chairman, with his 23-year-old grandson David Sharpe replacing him in the role.

Whelan was banned from football-related activity for six weeks and fined £50,000 in December after making racist comments about Jewish and Chinese people –  including him saying “Jewish people chase money more than everybody else” –  and was ordered to attend an education programme run by the Football Association. While he accepted the FA charge, he denied the remarks he made were racist.

The 78-year-old, who bought the club 20 years ago, will continue to own the club but will no longer have a hands-on role. In a statement on the club’s official website, he said: “The time has now come to hand over the reins. I am approaching 80-years-old and spend an increasingly long time abroad, and cannot make it to games. It is a decision I have been mulling over for some years and I believe David is now ready.”