Welcome to Industry Insider by Behind Sport! Our latest guest is Freelance Sports Journalist, Jason Pettigrove.

 

Tell us about yourself, what is your current role and what roles have you done previously? 

I’ve been a freelancer for the last five and a bit years, having started off just writing my own blog after being given a push and a helping hand from the likes of Graham Hunter, Guillem Balague and others.

I’ve had a large number of freelance roles since I began. I’ve worked for beIN Sports, MARCA, Gulf News and far too many other outlets to name, both print and digital. As is the way of the freelance world, nothing is forever it seems, and more often than not a new editor or someone higher up the food chain has dispensed with my services for no other reason than they want to bring their mates in. One of the harsher realities of the freelance world.

Currently, I’m dividing my time by being an editor for FC Barcelona’s official English website, Editor-in-Chief of FC Pinzgau Saalfelden, a third tier Austrian team who’ve just been taken over by a group of American investors, CaughtOffside, for whom I look at the EPL, and a number of betting companies, for which I write about all sports.

I wrote the official biography for ex-Chelsea player, Alan Hudson, and I’m currently in the middle of my second book; Lionel Messi – The King of Camp Nou.

Jason Pettigrove

 

What do you do in your current role?

For FC Barcelona, we edit all of the articles into the English language, write match reports, keep everyone up to date with all areas of the club, and contribute as needed to the official Twitter account.

For FC Pinzgau, I am in charge of all aspects of their written content. The new website is only just up and running and so will be populated with some creative items over the coming days and weeks.

CaughtOffside is a look at the transfer rumours of the day and other items pertaining to the EPL which may be of interest to the audience.

Jason Pettigrove and Pele

 

What does a normal week look like for you?

Touchwood, I’ve kept busy, and at the moment I’m lucky to get a day off. Normally working from 6am to midnight, five or six days a week, and taking breaks as and when I can.

As a self-employed freelancer, you can’t really turn the work down if it’s there, particularly in the current climate.

I’ve been fortunate that in the five years I’ve been doing this, I’ve not really had too much down time, but I know that could be my reality at any point.

Jason Pettigrove & David Villa

 

How did you end up where you are right now? When did you know you wanted to work in sport?

I’d always wanted to work in sport and knew I could write. I just didn’t know where to start as I’d not been to uni and didn’t have a media background.

In another, social, role, I was able to invite Graham Hunter to an event, we got talking and he basically told me to go for it. It really was that one chat that gave me the confidence to ‘put myself out there,’ and luckily, after a year or two of part-time writing, I started to get enough work to make it a full-time job.

I feel very fortunate to make my living doing something I love.

 

What are you excited about in your industry at the moment?

The depth of talent across the board and the range of content. There are some very innovative, clever people in the industry, all of whom are looking to go the extra mile in order to bring new and engaging content to those who want it.

That’s very inspiring and forces us all to up our game.

 

What is the one piece of advice you would give to someone wanting to work in the sports industry?

Believe in yourself and don’t compare your work to others. There are far too many people that come into the industry and are put off because they’ll ‘never be like xxx.’ If you are getting work and your bosses are happy, that’s the barometer to measure yourself by. Not by how many likes you might get on social or because your impression is that someone is better than you.

Find your niche, hone your skills and sell yourself. You’ll be far more effective at your work than if your time is spent concerning yourself on how you wish you could turn a phrase like Jonathan Liew, or write so passionately like Musa Okwonga.

Be you. Be authentic.

 

How to follow Jason Pettigrove on social media…

My Twitter account is @jasonpettigrove. DM’s are always open and I’d be delighted to hear from anyone. Always willing to help if I can.

 

Thanks for reading our Industry Insider feature with Freelance Sports Journalist, Jason Pettigrove.