Anfield from the press box

I had rather hoped that I would be updating this blog more regularly but alas this has not been the case so I apologise to my many readers (all five of them!) and promise only that I wil try to do better.

It’s been pretty quiet of late. I’ve been getting the head down, trying to get on top of this dissertation although last night I got a welcome reprieve from an evening with the books when I was offered the chance to be part of Click Liverpool’s live coverage of Liverpool’s hosting of Birmingham, a game that disappointingly finished 2-2.

It was my first foray into the press box at Anfield and indeed into the inner bowels of the stadium. The plush carpets and the warm and welcoming press room where soup, sandwiches, tea and coffee were aplenty. Unfortunately I’d been the chippy beforehand.

As the journos were busy tapping away on their laptops and Mark Lawrenson was shooting the breeze with the BBC folk, joking about Andriy Voronin’s nickname being Bon Jovi I took it all in and learned a bit about how Click is covering each Liverpool home game with exclusive minute by minute reports.

I was charged with the task of collating the stats as the game progressed, not as easy as you would think especially when temperatures felt like they were below zero and every so often I had to wiggle my toes just to ensure they weren’t frozen.

Fortunately I had gloves for my hands, my colleague Richard Buxton wasn’t so lucky as he rubbed his hands together for heat whilst incessantly and impressively typing out the game’s action.

In some ways the atmosphere was so much better in the press box as you could take it all in, the view was fantastic and you could hear Alex McLeish go mental on the touchline as well as witness at close hand Birmingham’s new owner, Carson Yeung, sit comfortably in his ridiculous dead animal coat.

But then again there are draw backs like not being able to jump for joy when David Ngog opened the scoring or swear continually when Cameron Jerome put the visitors in front.

Afterwards I took in the press conferences of McLeish and Rafael Benitez, both good football men, both disappointed. The former by David Ngog’s dive for the penalty and the latter by the result which makes it one win in nine games for the Reds.

These are dark times at Anfield but yet there is a togetherness about the place and you can sense it just as much in the press room and the inner depths of the great stadium as you can in its famous stands.

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A happy return to the ‘real’ world

My return from an incredible and at times surreal month in Cape Town has been met with its fair share of problems in my personal life but there’s plenty of great stuff going on in my professional-ish life.

I say professional-ish because as much as I would like journalism to be my profession it’s not exactly paying the bills at the moment. But as young man, still in education, I am willing to accept my lot and get on with it.

I take every opportunity thrown my way, knowing the experience is what’s important. However mundane the story or however little I know about the person I am interviewing I will, under no circumstances, turn it down. That’s the mantra and so far it’s working.

I am now regularly contributing to Click Liverpool after the success of my South African blog (I’m heralding it as one even if they’re not!) and I am also working with a new website, Purple Revolver as it attempts to establish itself as one stop shop for all your movie and music news needs.

Central to this effort will be our coverage of the Creamfields festival next weekend from which we will hopefully be reporting live throughout Saturday and Sunday with interviews, reviews and gossip.

I’m hoping my experience working at Liverpool Sound City earlier in the year will be helpful. Although something tells me that there is a big difference between hundreds of gigs held in 30 venues across one city and a big piss up in a field in the middle of nowhere.

And finally, going into my last  year at LJMU I’m hoping to play my part in making LJMU Journalism the biggest, baddest, and best student journalism website you have ever seen or something along those lines.

And along the way hopefully I won’t neglect my blogging duties and get back to writing less about me and more about this odd world we live in.

Live from Cape Town!

Greetings from Cape Town, South Africa. Apologies for the lack of updates but access to internet here has been more restricted than I would have liked.

I am maintaining a regular blog at Click Liverpool which has stories from all my adventures so far and there have been a few!

I urge you to check it out as well as enjoy this picture of an African legend and a seagull with good taste.

Mandela and the Seagull

Cape Town awaits

Nervous times. In just over two hours time I will be embarking on an epic journey that I hope will finish with me being in Cape Town, South Africa by Thursday evening. As you may know I am spending a month there, soaking up the culture and working for a local newspaper as part of a very unique work experience opportunity.

My journey begins at Liverpool Lime Street, from there to London Euston train station, two underground lines to London Heathrow, a 7 hour flight to Dubai and then another 9 hour connection to Cape Town. It’s a bit hard to fathom the fact that I won’t be getting a proper night’s sleep until some time Thursday night but I’m not complaining!

I will be blogging on my adventures at the wonderful Click Liverpool and I will be posting some stuff on this blog as well so keep reading!

The future of football fanzines

Last year myself and a course mate at LJMU, Nick Kelly, looked at what future there was for football fanzines in light of the growing popularity of football supporters websites, forums, Facebook groups and so on.

Being based in a football mad city we spoke to fans of both Liverpool and Everton. Some were part of the fanzine heyday of the 1990s, some we’re trying to make the breakthrough in these more competitive times and some were from the forums, websites and Facebook groups that are not only providing a constant distraction from the day time job to football fans up and down the country but are threatening the future of the traditional football fanzine.

The resulting article has now been published at Click Liverpool, a relatively new Liverpool based news site that is giving the other major online news outlets in the city, Liverpool Echo and Liverpool Daily Post, a run for their money.

I’ll also be blogging for Click Liverpool on my South African adventures so keep visiting!