1) Who are ya?
I’m Laura Jones, a 34 (very nearly 35) year old, born and raised in Sheffield but now living in London. I’m the owner and writer of Yes I CanExplain The Offside Rule football blog.
2) Who do you support?
I support Sheffield Wednesday. I think it’s penance for being bad in a previous life.
3) What was your first game?
The first game I attended was Sheffield Wednesday v Leicester City in 1991. My first game should have been the Rumbelows League Cup Final at Wembley, where the Owls beat Manchester United, but I was recovering from having my appendix removed.
My first game watching Wednesday live I saw Nigel Pearson lift a piece a silverware on the Hillsborough pitch. It lulled me into a false sense of security and I’ve been hooked ever since.
4) What do you do for a job?
I’m an instructional designer for the College of Policing. I write national online training materials for all police personnel. My role is extremely varied, I can be writing training on health and safety one day and counter terrorism the next.
5) Have you played/worked for any football clubs?
This is a shameful admission, but I played in a tournament for Sheffield United girls!!! My cousin played for the team, and I’d gone as a spectator but they were short of players. Underneath the Blades Kit I wore my Sheffield Wednesday kit. I was warm but at least I felt slightly less dirty!
I play occasionally in lunchtime games at work but I’ve recently been named the ‘Darren Anderton’ of the team (GM – otherwise known as ‘Sicknote’). Play a good game, get injured, then out for three months!
6) How did you get into it?
In terms of football writing I trained as journalist. I have a Masters in e-Journalism from University of Sheffield and had every intention of becoming a sports web journalist but unfortunately life got in the way.
I started writing again in 2012, when I set up my blog. I had no expectations of where it would take me but I’ve now written for publications such as When Saturday Comes and Total Football and my blog has been shortlisted twice for Best Female at the national Football Blogging Awards.
7) What do you get out of it?
I love a good analogy. Taking a topical football subject and relating it to life or to theories or even to children’s bedtime stories, for me makes the game feel more alive. Football is inclusive, there may be a division in terms of club rivalries but when you talk about larger footballing issues and how they relate to people’s lives, I find there is a real sense of community.
8) What advice would you give someone wanting to follow in your stud marks/footsteps?
It’s never too late to start again. If you have a passion and a talent for writing about sport and you have something different to say, give it a go.
9) If you could do it all again what would you change?
I wouldn’t change a thing. I may have had regrets about not taking my chance to be a journalist when I was younger but the older, wiser me has more to say on the game.
10) Who’s your footballing hero?
David Hirst, the greatest number nine to ever pull on a Sheffield Wednesday shirt.
- Football Blueprint – The Offside Rule (scotsfootycards.wordpress.com)
- WHO ARE YA? Alex Jones (nostanding13.wordpress.com)
- WHO ARE YA? Caroline Elwood-Stokes (nostanding13.wordpress.com)
- Who are ya? Millwall forced to play in Sheffield Wednesday away strip after forgetting kit (metro.co.uk)
- WHO ARE YA? Dave Willoughby (nostanding13.wordpress.com)
- Who Are Ya? (itstartedwithamiss.wordpress.com)
- More excerpts from The Football Pink: Issue 2 – OUT NOW (footballpink.net)
- Illegitimi non carborundum (nostanding13.wordpress.com)
- Over 45 Tips On Blogger Outreach From Digital Sport London (koozai.com)