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Gavin Peacock: Former Chelsea player now a pastor in Canada

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Gavin Peacock
Gavin Peacock: Former Chelsea player now a pastor in Canada. Photo/
  • Gavin Peacock, now a pastor in Canada, is one of the former footballers who became unrecognizable following a drastic career change.
  •  After hanging up his boots in 2002, Gavin worked as a pundit for BBC and hosted a weekly podcast on Chelsea’s official website. 
  • He quit his punditry job so as to study a three-year master’s course in divinity at Ambrose Seminary in Canada. 

Gavin Peacock, now a pastor in Canada, is one of the few footballers who are currently unrecognizable after a drastic career change. 

Born on November 18, 1967, Peacock played as a midfielder and a striker for several teams.

Gavin Peacock

Gavin Peacock celebrates after scoring for Chelsea. Photo/ Christians in Sport

The England international comes from a footballing family, as his father, Keith, played for Charlton Athletic. Gavin liked Newcastle United even though he followed Charlton as a child. 

He began his senior football career at Queens Park Rangers at the age of 17. 

Before moving to Third Division club Gillingham in October 1987, Gavin made 17 league appearances for Queens Park Rangers, scoring once. 

The move to Gillingham was his father’s idea, who was at that time the manager of the club. But shortly after joining, Gavin’s father was sacked. 

Gavin remained at the club and was Kent’s Young Player of the Year in his first season before being voted by the fans as Player of the Year in his last season.

Gillingham were relegated to the Fourth Division in 1989, and Gavin subsequently left the club. 

The talented attacker joined AFC Bournemouth in August 1989 on a 250,000 euros deal. Gavin began the 1990-91 season in the Third Division playing for AFC Bournemouth but moved to the Second Division after Newcastle United signed him. 

He was not the first member of his family to join Newcastle United, as his uncle was at the club in the 1950s. 

Gavin Peacock was at Newcastle United when Division One was formed in 1992. He scored 12 goals as The Magpies won the 1992-93 Division One title. 

The England international joined Chelsea in 1993 after making 105 league appearances and scoring 17 goals for Newcastle United. 

He is remembered for scoring both home and away in Chelsea’s 1-0 victories over Manchester United in his debut season. 

Peacock, who was playing as a midfielder, finished joint-top scorer that season with 14 goals.

He helped the Blues reach the 1995 UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup semi-finals and the 1996 FA Cup semi-finals before returning to Queens Park Rangers in 1996. 

Gavin Peacock had a brief stint with Charlton Athletic and then returned to Queens Park Rangers, where he retired in 2002. 

The legendary footballer made over 500 league appearances, scoring more than 100 goals.

Gavin Peacock

Gavin Peacock playing for QPR. Photo/ 90min.

Post-Playing Career

After hanging up his boots in 2002, Gavin Peacock worked as a pundit on BBC Radio 5 Live’s comedy game show Fighting Talk, Football Focus and BBC Radio 4 comedy show One. 

He also worked as a pundit on Match of the Day 2 and hosted a weekly podcast on Chelsea’s official website. 

Becoming A Pastor 

Towards the end of his football career, Gavin Peacock began preaching in his local church St Michaels and All Angels in Wilmington. 

Gavin Peacock, now a pastor, quit his punditry job so as to study a three-year master’s course in divinity in Canada. 

During an interview with Queens Park Rangers’ in-house media in 2013, Gavin revealed that he never sensed a call to full-time ministry until 2007. 

“I have always spoken about my faith in Jesus Christ but never sensed a call to full-time ministry until six years ago. This call was affirmed by the church, and I began to preach. It was then that I felt compelled to pursue vocational ministry. It’s been the hardest few years of my life, but coming away from the UK has given me some anonymity. Here in Canada, they consider me a preacher, not a footballer or pundit!” Gavin Peacock is quoted saying by the Daily Star

Gavin Peacock is now an associate pastor at Calvary Grace Church of Calgary and the director of International Outreach for CBMW.

He has been married to Amanda since 1989, and together they have two children. Their son Jake was born in 1993, whereas their daughter Ava was born in 1996. 

Gavin published his autobiography, A Greater Glory, in May 2021.

Gavin Peacock

Pastor Gavin Peacock. Photo/

Abraham Odhiambo is an avid sports fan who loves to write about football, boxing and wrestling. He's a big supporter of Manchester United. He's pursuing a bachelor's degree in Communication and Media at Egerton University.

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