Third year Sports Journalism students on the Advanced SportsJournalism Practice module work on a rolling 7-day sports news cycle – planning for our website Merseysportlive, producing sports pages for the weekly magazine Liverpool Life, and streaming TV and radio sports bulletins, as well as sports podcasts.
Throughout the week, sports journalism students produce content for our digital platform, Merseysportlive.co.uk and its Facebook and Twitter channels. They respond to the weekly sports cycle, covering press conferences, matches and fixtures, post-match interviews, as well organising longer form interviews and feature pieces at venues and with sports people and organisations across the region.
On Mondays, they come together to produce quality broadcast sports shows in the TV and radio studios as well as designing and editing sports pages for the weekly magazine.
Virgil van Dijk
Two of our Merseysportlive reporters attended every home Champions League match at Anfield, rubbing shoulders with sports journalists from around the world.
They were given same access before, during and after the match, and had the opportunity for post-match interviews with top players like Virgil Van Dijk.
Multi-media content was produced for Merseysportlive website and social media channels, and packages created for radio and TV bulletins.
Listen to the radio package from this game here;
Boxing Coach Alan Clarke
Merseysportlive reporters also cover more in depth features and interviews throughout the week, such as this piece with renown boxing coach Alan Clarke.
He has inspired many young men and women into boxing, steering them away from crime. He is also a major figure behind the campaign “Real Men Don’t Carry Knives”.
Our MSL journalists produce at least one sporting podcast each week as part of their output, focusing on a topical debate or issue at the time.
Subjects this year ranged from controversy around VAR in football, focus on Liverpool and Everton’s seasons, and to latest developments in sports such as racing, darts, MMA and more. Listen to more podcasts here; https://merseysportlive.co.uk/category/podcasts/
Mickey Mellon interview
Every week Merseysportlive reporters attend pre-match press conferences, cover the live action, and gather post-match interviews, such as this one with Tranmere Rovers boss Micky Mellon.
They follow the exact same “sports news cycle” as they will in the industry, and post-match interviews like this offer great practice in questioning techniques, filming, editing and production of social shorts as well as bulletins.
Andy Bennett – Fishing interview
All our sports journalists are encouraged to cover a wide spectrum of sport, key in their development. This year, Merseysportlive reporters have covered everything from fishing, darts, gymnastics, ice hockey, cross country, rugby, boxing, MMA and more.
This interview with Andy Bennett, by Toby Clarke, attracted hundreds of views from readers across the region. Sports which struggle for exposure in mainstream media are grateful of the coverage.
Ice Hockey interview
Another example of our students’ work this year has been developing great contacts with smaller amateur clubs from more niche sports.
Almost every weekend our reporters have attended Widnes Wild ice hockey matches, where players and staff have enjoyed working with our journalists to ensure greater coverage of their sport.
They have produced multi-media packages for online, as well as editing shorter pieces for radio and TV bulletins for Monday’s sports newsdays, such as this after Widnes beat Bradford Bulldogs 5-2.
Bryony Frost interview
We have also encouraged our sports reporters to cover more women’s sport, which has been successful this year in sports such as football, MMA, athletics and horse racing.
This excellent interview of winning jockey Bryony Frost at Haydock Park was done by Tom Ellis. It took place in February and like all other interviews featured, prior to lockdown restrictions.
Sky Sports News Visit
Each year, L6 sports journalism students enjoy a fantastic behind the scenes look at the Sky Sports News studios and newsroom at Sky HQ.
In February, they spent several hours watching presenters in the live studio, journalists producing content for digital platforms, and producers in the gallery putting 24-hour sports news and programmes together.
They also had an amazing opportunity to talk to key Sky Sports News personnel, including presenter Kate Mason and head of training, Laurie Tucker.
Old Trafford and Lords cricket visits
A lucky group of sports journalism students have enjoyed visits to Lords CC in London and to a Lancashire County Cricket media day at Old Trafford cricket ground.
Arranged through our department’s contacts, the students met top players like Jimmy Anderson, interviewed England stars like Keaton Jennings, spoke with legends such as Sir Ian Botham, and toured both grounds and facilities.
They are also worked alongside established cricket journalists and spent more than half an hour in a sit down interview with chief executive and former England bowler Paul Allott.
Aintree Racecourse visit
1st year Sports Journalism students enjoy a visit to Aintree in induction week – one of the most iconic sporting venues in the world.
They were treated to a behind-the-scenes tour of the stadium, changing and weighing rooms, media room and the museum on site. They also enjoyed a presentation from Aintree historian Jane Clarke.
A new sports news and features website launched in September 2019 – and within weeks it had attracted tens of thousands of monthly readers!
The site offers a live, professional digital platform for our Sports Journalism students to cover every sport across the region – from Liverpool FC’s Champions League games to grass roots cross country and amateur boxing.
Sports Journalism student produced almost 1,000 sports stories in its first 6 months, including exclusive interviews, breaking news, creative listicles, and thought-provoking opinion and podcasts.
The site also allows them media accreditation access to all the major sporting events, covering press conferences, media days, events and matches, and post-event interview opportunities.
In its first five months of operation (Oct-March) the site attracted more than 26,000 unique users and achieved almost 70,000 page hits.