April 19, 2019

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Peacock brings impressive resumé in role with Valour FC

MIKAELA MACKENZIE / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS</p><p>Technical consultant John Peacock, a new addition to the Valour FC coaching staff.</p>

MIKAELA MACKENZIE / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS

Technical consultant John Peacock, a new addition to the Valour FC coaching staff.

Valour FC head coach and general manager Rob Gale didn't have to look far to find the team's newest member of the coaching staff — across the dinner table, in fact.

Valour FC, Winnipeg's soccer team in the new Canadian Premier League, announced last week the addition to John Peacock as a technical consultant. He just happens to be Gale's brother-in-law, but before you assume he was brought in due to family ties, take a look at his resumé.

Peacock, 62, has more than 35 years of experience in international team management, coach education and professional youth development. The Leeds, England native will work with Valour on a part-time basis, as he also does consulting work for Football Association, FIFA, UEFA, Chinese FA, and Manchester United. He's also excelled as a manager, as he coached England to the UEFA U-17 European Championship title in 2010 and again in 2014, making him one of the most successful managers at any level in the country's history. Most recently, Peacock served as a mentor to England's U-20 squad, which won the FIFA U-20 World Cup in 2017.

"He's world-class," said Gale after Monday morning's training session at the Subway South Soccer Complex.

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Valour FC head coach and general manager Rob Gale didn't have to look far to find the team's newest member of the coaching staff — across the dinner table, in fact.

Valour FC, Winnipeg's soccer team in the new Canadian Premier League, announced last week the addition to John Peacock as a technical consultant. He just happens to be Gale's brother-in-law, but before you assume he was brought in due to family ties, take a look at his resumé.

Peacock, 62, has more than 35 years of experience in international team management, coach education and professional youth development. The Leeds, England native will work with Valour on a part-time basis, as he also does consulting work for Football Association, FIFA, UEFA, Chinese FA, and Manchester United. He's also excelled as a manager, as he coached England to the UEFA U-17 European Championship title in 2010 and again in 2014, making him one of the most successful managers at any level in the country's history. Most recently, Peacock served as a mentor to England's U-20 squad, which won the FIFA U-20 World Cup in 2017.

"He's world-class," said Gale after Monday morning's training session at the Subway South Soccer Complex.

"He's world-renowned. You don't work for Manchester United, FIFA, UEFA as long as he has, top-level game, two-time European champion, a World Cup winner, his resumé speaks for itself. But then you get to meet him and see him as a person and he's absolutely what this organization is about. He's a first-class person. He can come in and challenge us as a staff in the right way. He's got a very great way about him. And as he said to the players, he's here to help them and develop their game and to use him as a resource. For all of us as a (new) football club, to have someone of that calibre, is first-class."

Peacock met the team for the first time Monday morning. He'll be in town until the end of the month, helping the coaching staff and players prepare for the CPL's inaugural season, which is set to kick off on May 1.

"I think my role is very diverse," said Peacock, who will do a mix of coaching, scouting and club management for Valour FC. "I enjoy the diversity now as I'm getting older. I enjoy just picking up things that I want to do, and it's working with good people, people that want to improve. I think I said at the very beginning that the philosophy and the vision trying to be put together here with Valour is similar to my own, so I think there's quite a good connection there already."

With all the other work Peacock has on his plate, it wouldn't be possible for him to give his full attention to Valour. He said it's going to be difficult to juggle his schedule, but he and Gale have worked out a plan that will work for both parties.

"I would say I've come into the twilight of my career. I would say very much now about passing on information and knowledge to coaches in particular and to players," Peacock said.

"My schedule will be one where I have to plan accordingly. I'm not going to be here on a regular basis," said Peacock. "But with the way the world is, it's very easy to get information sent through when I'm not able to physically make it into Canada. But I've already sort of planned quite a few visits between now and the season unfolding. It could be a couple weeks at a time, it could be 10 days. And obviously when the club season happens in England, it will give me a bit more of an opportunity."

Gale said he was 13 years old when Peacock came into his life and he's been a role model to his soccer career ever since. He hopes Peacock will have a similar positive influence on his players and the franchise overall.

"It's not just about building a team here, it's about building a football club that the Manitoba people will resonate with for the next hundred years and get behind," Gale said. "He's a great addition to help us start that on the right foot and make sure those values, characters and philosophies stand the test of time moving forward."

 

taylor.allen@freepress.mb.ca

Twitter: @TaylorAllen31

Taylor Allen

Taylor Allen
Reporter

Eighteen years old and still in high school, Taylor got his start with the Free Press on June 1, 2011. Well, sort of.

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