‘'Love the game, let your enthusiasm and passion for football shine through”
We all dream of playing professional football, but unfortunately very few get that opportunity. But there’s other ways to get involved with the beautiful game. This week, Sky Sports reporter Bryn Law was kind enough to give us an insight into his career so far in the latest edition of Tecnica Talks...
Hi Bryn, thanks for speaking to us, it must be a bit strange answering questions rather than asking them! Firstly, where did your career begin? Was there something or someone who inspired you to get involved?
My career began before I'd finished a postgrad diploma in broadcast journalism at what was then called Lancs Poly. As part of the course, I went on a work placement with a radio station in my hometown, Wrexham. I was working in the newsroom but made clear my love of football. I'd already done hospital radio commentating on matches whilst I was school, so I had some experience, and they employed me to cover games for them even after the work placement was finished. Then I got a job as a news reporter with the BBC in Barrow, that was my first proper job.
My inspiration to become a football reporter came from listening to coverage of games on the radio as a lad. I used to love the commentaries from European games provided by brilliant broadcasters like Peter Jones and Alan Parry. I loved the game but I knew I was never going to be good enough to play at any decent level, so I wanted to talk about it instead.
You're now working at Sky Sports, what's it like to be a part of such a hugely successful business?
It's great to get paid for going to watch football, I know I'm a very lucky chap. Working for Sky is great because nobody covers more matches so I've enjoyed all sorts of opportunities and worked on all sorts of matches, including women's games, beach football, Premier League, internationals, all sorts. Working for a company like Sky has it's pressures. I have to work hard to try and maintain the high standards and quality that the company's become famous for.
You're well known for your work on camera, reporting on matches or the latest news, but what sort of things do you have to do off camera as part of your job?
I keep across as much of what goes in the game as possible, checking websites and social media feeds every day so hopefully I've got a good general knowledge of what's going on at clubs. On top of that, I prepare specifically for games that I'm going to be covering, checking results, team news, stats and the like. It's a habit I got into when I was commentating on matches, I apply the same disciplines to reporting. Fail to prepare, prepare to fail.
Have you ever spoke to someone, a player or manager for example, where you've almost felt star struck? Or have you met someone you maybe idolised at a young age?
I've done thousands of football interviews now but the first one is one I still remember. I was sent to talk to Mickey Thomas, one of my Wrexham favourites. He was eating a Cornish pasty when I arrived and wouldn't stop eating it to do the interview, I was too in awe to insist, so the interview sounded very muffled! Of course, there are star names who put you a bit more on edge, interviewing Sir Alex Ferguson was always pretty nerve-wracking, but I hope I treat everyone the same by now. I'm a bit less start struck after 25 years in the business!
Finally Bryn, do you have one piece of advice for anyone who is looking to get into journalism and TV reporting?
There's lots I could suggest but the biggest one for me is 'love the game', let your enthusiasm and passion for football shine through. I still pay to go and watch games when I'm not working, I'm still playing Sunday League as well, and it’s all because I love football.
A huge thank you to Bryn for taking the time to speak to us, and for providing such a fantastic insight into his career! Make sure you follow him on social media.
If you would like to get involved in sports journalism, get in touch with us at Tècnica and we may be able to offer advice, a platform to express your thoughts via our website and point you in the right direction!