Way back in July, we called for soccer supporters to take part in the Pundit Pursuit — the quest to find fervent fans that could help co-present on The Football Republic’s five YouTube soccer channels: The Football Republic (for all fans), FullTimeDEVILS (for Manchester United fans), Blue Moon Rising TV (for Manchester City fans), Spurred On (for Tottenham Hotspur fans) and ChelseaFansChannel.
Skype and The Football Republic asked for entries to find new pundits — and we were overwhelmed by the response. In fact, hundreds of people took part, sending us their 30 second video entries via Skype using #SkypeFanZone.
We were looking for candidates with the passion to become our next global correspondents and presenters. And, we had the difficult task of selecting the five winners who demonstrated the most fervor, character, charm — and most of all, a true passion for soccer. For a glimpse into how hard the selection process was, take a look at some the entries here.
And now to introduce the winners of each channel.
John Shin, our Manchester United winner for FullTimeDevils is ecstatic about his win:
“Considering the amount of people that had shown interest on social media platforms, I thought I was out of the contest.”
John has been a fan since he was 10, following his team no matter what:
“I’ve always watched United games — we used to watch the games with Spanish commentators… I never understood them, but it didn’t matter — all I knew was ‘GOOOOL’”.
During his guest role, John hoped to raise awareness of football to a US audience:
“One of my goals is to expose the beautiful game as much as possible onto American soil. Football, or “soccer” as they call it here in the US, is catching on — and folks here are showing much more interest in the Premier League than ever before.”
Brad Reynolds is our ChelseaFansChannel winner. And like the others, Brad’s reaction was one of amazement when he realized he could star as a guest presenter on the channel:
“I feel I bought what a lot of my friends thought to the show, definitely our crisis situation (Chelsea losing 5 of the first 10 league games this season) — and I was glad I mainly got positive feedback.”
Being a Chelsea fan since he was a toddler, Brad says that there was no looking back since getting his first Chelsea top. So what, or who, inspired his entry to Pundit Pursuit?
“Spencer FC — because of how composed he is in front of the camera.”
And when asked about his football hero, Brad is passionate about which player he admires the most:
“My favorite football personality, or player, would have to be Ronaldinho, a magician on the ball and truly a great role model for all future players.”
Blue Moon Rising TV
James Carbonara was the lucky winner for Blue Moon Rising TV. Also from the United States, James recognizes the impact of football on the American market. Featuring statistical facts, James’s stint as a co-presenter added a lot of substance to the channel:
“I think I brought further evidence of the impact that football is having in America and the passion it provokes, even in relatively new spectators.”
James started noticing British football on TV during the 2010-2011 season:
“For me Carlos Tevez is such an exciting player, I decided to support his team.”
And of a potential future career as a presenter, James admits it is attractive. So who’s style would he emulate?
“Adam is at the top — he has great quality, and quantity of consistently good content and terrific analysis. I also enjoy Walter Smith, and the post-match interviews that a presenter does after the matches.”
Our fourth winner for Spurs Channel, Spurred On is Daniel Ndidi. Totally shocked at the win, Daniel admits he never expected it. He’s been a Spurs fan for 10 years and discovered Spurred On by accident when searching YouTube for the equivalent of Arsenal TV.
And the inspiration for his entry? A real yearning to promote more love for his favorite team:
“I always felt that Tottenham doesn’t get a lot of love compared to other clubs so I wanted to help change that.”
When asked what he bought to the guest spot, Daniel is the epitome of modesty:
“Erm… Just myself I guess. I have good insight into football, there’s definitely more to come from me I have a vast player knowledge (because of Football Manager lol).”
The Football Republic
And lastly, our youngest winner, at only 12 years old, is The Football Republic Winner — Thomas Giblin. Thomas has been a fervent fan of Manchester City for 5 years and discovered The Football Republic a year ago. Thomas is a huge personality, but a man of few words when it comes to interviews. When asked what it feels like to be a winner the answer is simple: “Great”. And would he like to pursue a career as a presenter provokes the answer, “maybe”. His entry was inspired by his love of football and he hopes his guest spot helped bring across a younger person’s point of view.
Congratulations to all our winners, and huge thanks also to all our entrants who took the time and effort to enter their video messages.
So what’s next for The Football Republic and Skype partnership? Stay tuned for the upcoming exciting My Match Day competition from Full Time Devils. Check Skype blogs for more updates coming soon.