The Telegraph are reporting that Dr. Peter Vint has left his job as Director of the Everton Academy. He was in the role for just over a year, having started in December of 2015.
The appointment of Vint a year ago came as a surprise, considering his background where he was Senior Director of Competitive Analysis, Research & Innovation for the United States Olympic Committee.
The Director was in the headlines less than a week ago when he was announcing the appointment of the new Academy Head of Coaching Dave Adams. The newspaper went on to say that the only official comment received so far was -
“Peter has left the club to pursue other opportunities. We wish him the best in his future pursuits.”
In his previous role with preparing the American Olympics contingent, Vint headed up a team of sports science and medical professionals, supporting five national governing bodies (including major players USA Track and Field and USA Swimming) and won 64 medals during the 2012 Olympic Games in London.
His detailed understanding of all aspects of performance and development, accumulated over the course of his career, has allowed him to develop performance-impacting initiatives that have delivered positive competitive outcomes. He has also provided guidance to coaches in skill acquisition, feedback and practice design, as well as in many other areas of performance and development.
However, there were rumours of discord among the specialist football coaches who were unhappy with some of the changes he had made, due to his lack of football experience.
In an interview with The Telegraph at the beginning of the season, he had talked about some of the resistance he had been facing -
“Oh, I have experienced a bit of that. I think it comes from some uncertainty and curiosity and perhaps even some discomfort people have about having someone who comes from such a different background being put in this position. Who is this guy? What does this mean? Is he going to ‘Moneyball’ us? I’ve heard this used as a verb. I chuckle at that because it’s not something I have ever said.
“I’m a fan of the game but I recognise that I know only a fraction of what the guys down this hallway know. They’ve lived it. They’ve played at the highest levels. They’ve earned their scars and their coaching badges and they know the intricacies of what happens at a level I never will. My challenge is taking what they know and combining it with what I know to get disproportionate gains.
“I have to avoid the perception that I’ve come here from Olympic sports - with a Ph.D. - and know a lot more than they do. That isn’t the case at all. We have simply come to this place from different paths. Our work has to be collaborative, not competitive.”
Everton have continued to show that their long term strategy involves youth development, and with Vint leaving his role this might be put on hold further plans they have in place.
The Telegraph article also states that current head of operations at the Academy Joel Waldron is likely to replace Vint, at least on a temporary basis.