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Peter Joseph MacLachlan (December 1, 1914 - March 6, 1995) was a Georgeland sporting personality and broadcaster, famous primarily for his football (soccer) career in the 1930s and 1940s.

Early life[]

MacLachlan was born in Usk, East Mainland in December 1914, the only child of Scottish immigrants. MacLachlan came from a very poor, working-class background. His father was a coal miner. MacLachlan grew up initially in Usk and later in Doubledance, where he attended school until the age of 15. He left school at that age to work in a variety of jobs, including a period as a shoeshine boy.

Early football career[]

MacLachlan had excelled at football when playing as a boy, and in 1931, quite by accident, was spotted by a talent scout playing with a junior league in his Doubledance neighbourhood. MacLachlan trialled for Durham City and Lylecity, before being signed by the Hatton Wanderers in 1933. The 19-year-old debuted as a striker for the ailing club and soon became a rising attraction for the side. He scored the final goal of the club's career, in its final match of the 1934-35 season against Weston United. The team was not re-licensed forn the next season and officially disbanded.

Doubledance United[]

MacLachlan was immediately signed post-season by Doubledance United, who were amid one of their most successful periods. MacLachlan was initially a frequent substitute, but as his natural talent became more obvious he began to play more and more first-team games. During this period, often considered his heyday, MacLachlan scored an average of 45 goals a season and was the league's top scorer three years running. In 1938, still just twenty-four, MacLachlan was made the Georgeland Football Association's inaugural Player of the Year.
MacLachlan played for the national side between 1937 and 1940, and again from 1947-1948. In 1938 the team qualified for the World Cup for the first time, but were eliminated in the first round. MacLachlan later described this as the most heartbreaking moment of his entire career.

Army years[]

Injury trouble sidelined MacLachlan for most of the 1939-40 season. However, war was now looming in Europe and the Pacific and MacLachlan, like many young men at the time, felt inclined to contribute to Georgeland's war preparations. Anticipating Georgeland would fight alongside the United Kingdom, MacLachlan asked to be released from his contract with Doubledance United and enlisted in the Georgeland Army as a Private, though he was promoted to Corporal in 1941. When Prime Minister Fenton Thomas made his famous 1939 statement that Georgeland would not fight a 'far away' war, MacLachlan was, like many, disappointed. He remained in the army as a training instructor until Pearl Harbour, after which Georgeland declared war on Japan and Germany. MacLachlan was dispatched to North Africa and later to London. He fought in the North African campaign and recieved a bravery medal at El-Alamein.
MacLachlan participated in the Allied invasion of Normandy in June 1944. He was so affected by this experience he rarely spoke about it afterwards, even to family. He attended D-Day memorial services every year until his death.

Santa Christina[]

After the war ended in 1945, MacLachlan was discharged. Now 31, he was determined to return to football and was signed for Santa Christina United for the 1946-47 season. He initially performed poorly but recovered form after several months. He was again the league's top scorer in 1947-48. After being awarded another Footballer of the Year award in 1948, MacLachlan retired from professional football.

Broadcasting career[]

After his retirement, MacLachlan began appearing as a radio commentator for football matches throughout the early 1950s. In 1960, he made his debut as a television commentator for the first televised football match in Georgeland. He continued to provide commentary for televised football until 1986. Also during this period, MacLachlan appeared on dozens of other television programs, and presented Good Sports from 1979 until 1988. He was sought as an expert on football by a great many organisations, and wrote a regular column for the Doubledance Star between 1970 and 1990.
In 1993, MacLachlan was diagnosed with inoperable bowel cancer. He made few public appearances afterwards, save his annual pilgramage to Normandy. In 1994, the 80-year-old MacLachlan published his autobiography, Boy from the Street. He died in March 1995.

Legacy[]

MacLachlan is considered by many Georgelanders to be its greatest footballer of all time, if not the greatest sporting figure in the country's history. He is credited with beginning the sport's large-scale popularity and for his honest, laconic style when commentating.
In 2000, MacLachlan was declared Sportsman of the Century by This Sport Magazine. The 20 Greatest Georgelanders program of 2004 placed him second to Victor Martin as the greatest Georgelander in history.

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