Following on from the news of Head Coach Jason Henry’s departure from the Great British Lions’ Under 19’s programme just days ahead of their international friendly fixture in France, it’s now apparent that GB U19’s Defensive Coordinator Victor Peredo tendered his resignation from the programme earlier this week.
Last night, as news broke of Coach Henry’s departure from the programme, the GB Lions Under 19s programme shared a statement regarding the unfolding situation that left some querying whether the Lions’ first Head Coach had resigned, or been fired.
As more information begins to be shared within the community, it’s now clear that the British American Football Association took the decision to remove Coach Henry from his role – a shock decision with the team scheduled to head on the road for just their third international fixture later this week.
Now it appears the team will be heading to France also lacking a Defensive Coordinator, as the BUCS National Championship-Winning Stirling Clansmen Head Coach offered his resignation from the Lions programme Tuesday night, citing a lack of appreciation from the sport’s administration team.
Though the Lions’ were quick to announce the appointment of Acting Head Coach Neale McMaster, it’s clear there are lots of questions to be asked about the sudden unravelling of a programme that was only rebooted in 2018, and continues to have aspirations of competing in the IFAF U19 European Championships later this year.
We’ve reached out to the GB Lions U19s and BAFA for comment, and hope to bring further insight into the situation.
UPDATE: BAFA Representative Clive Dobbin shared the following statement with DblCoverage.com:
“Victor decided that, for personal reasons, he was not able to travel to France and was going to resign from the programme.
We are very grateful and appreciative to Victor for his time and contributions to the programme and would wish him all the best for the future.
To ensure continuity, and to ensure that the team are in the best position possible for the upcoming game against France, we are pleased to confirm that Scott Rowe has agreed to step up into the DC role for the game on Saturday.”
In the meantime, it’s becoming more and more clear that if the Under 19’s National Team are going to find a way to flourish, the community’s support of the players themselves is going to be essential. With a roster announcement for the game versus France expected imminently, first and foremost the focus should be on the talented young athletes getting the most out of their international experience.
To that end, a parent-led fundraising group are working to assist the players with covering the costs of the upcoming international schedule, and you can show your support on their GoFundMe page.