Date of release: Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Danny & NickyGreenwich alumni Danny and Nicky Cowley are in the spotlight this weekend as Lincoln City, the football club they manage, head to mighty Burnley in the fifth round of the FA Cup.

The brothers' achievement is astonishing. Ten months ago, they were full-time PE teachers and Lincoln languished halfway down the National League.

Today, Lincoln top the National League and are one of just two non-league sides to reach the last 16 of the Cup. Lincoln have already knocked out Championship sides Brighton and Ipswich, plus League One Oldham, in their dramatic FA Cup run.

Danny, City's manager, and Nicky, his assistant, both took Physical Education degrees at Greenwich, graduating with first class honours in 2002 and 2003 respectively. "We wanted a really good university offering a course leading to a teaching qualification. We loved our time there", says Danny.

He says it was at Greenwich that he found a love of teaching. "The degree gave me direction, and the skill set to be confident as a teacher," he adds. "It also taught me to be a lifelong learner, to be open and keep trying to improve.

"Knowledge is the bomb. The more knowledgeable, the more you are able to help people."

There are similarities between teaching and running a football team, Danny finds. "It's about making the most out of other human beings. I enjoy working with people and I look for the best in them. I am there to maximise what they can do rather than focus on what they can't."

Both brothers started out wanting to become professional footballers but had to give up due to injuries. "The next thing was football management", Danny says. They worked alongside each other as teachers too, at the FitzWymark School in Rayleigh, Essex. Danny was Head of PE and Nicky Head of Boy's PE. "We've always been close, always lived in each other's pockets", Danny says. "The trust we have in each other is very important."

The pair cut their managerial teeth at Concord Rangers, before moving on to managing Braintree Town. It took them just one year to take Braintree, also in the National League, to a top three finish.

"Making small incremental steps has been key to our career," Danny says. "I have been managing for ten years, three of them with Nicky, and we've seen relative success. Our dream is to manage at the highest level we can."

@GreenwichAlumni

Story by Public Relations

Picture: Danny (left) and Nicky Cowley at Sincil Bank, Lincoln City's ground. Credit: Stephen Daniels.