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08th Oct 2019

Why footballers find post-match interviews so daunting

Wayne Farry

Post-match interviews can be a mixed bag for footballers

After a match, a couple of footballers from either team will be tasked with speaking to the media and giving their take on the events of the previous 90 minutes.

For the victors, these interviews are rarely difficult, but for the losers it’s a different story altogether. Understandably, interviewers try and get the juiciest tidbits that they can from players, attempting to tap into their anger to provoke an impassioned response to questions.

It’s for this reason, say Jon Walters and Steve Sidwell, that most footballers don’t enjoy doing media work – well, that and the fact that most players don’t actually have media training.

On the latest episode of Liquid Football host Kelly Cates asked Jon and Steve for their thoughts on a post-match interview that took place on Sunday, that involving Matty Longstaff and his brother Sean after the younger’s winning goal for Newcastle United against Manchester United.

The Longstaff brothers were positively ebullient as they spoke to Sky Sports after the win, something which warmed the hearts of Sidwell and Walters.

“That for me stripped football – the business side of it, everything – to the rawness of just what it’s all about,” said Sidwell.

“You know, from playing as a kid on the playground to being the in the Premier League. And the images of his mum and dad up in the box, getting absolutely smashed as well.

“I watched it and that, for me, that was just class.”

Walters added: “His first game as well, thrown in. United at home, that’s brilliant.”

Footballers are rarely as keen to do post-match interviews however, according to the panel, with many needing their arm twisted to get in front of the cameras after a match.

“The hardest is after a big defeat. When you’ve won or you played well, they’re easy,” says Sidwell.

“You’ll find certain players that will front up to the media after defeat and some players won’t,” added Walters. “They only do it after a win”

“But there’s never training. There’s never training for media for players,” said Sidwell, something seconded by Walters.

“I never had any media training,” he said.