We have a very familiar face to the sport world in our latest Industry Insider. We sat down Kyle Walker (not the Manchester City and England right back as he’s commonly mistaken as), Presenter and Reporter for Sky Sports News and the Premier League!
Tell us about yourself, what is your current role and what roles have you done previously?
My name’s Kyle Walker and I’m a Presenter and Reporter for Sky Sports News and the Premier League. Throughout my years as a broadcaster I have worked for different organisations and across TV and Radio.
What do you do in your current role?
In my current role, I work on different shows on Sky Sports. On Sunday’s I present ‘Goals On Sunday’ with Bela Shah and throughout the week I work on ‘The Football Show’ as well as travelling to different clubs interviewing players and managers.
“Normal” isn’t a thing in sport so what does an “average” week look like for you?
An average week for me completely depends on where we’re at in the season, what games are on and where SSN or the Premier League want me.
I have my commitments to the shows I do which are set in stone, but around that each day is very different. There may be an interview I’m asked to go and do which means prep and travel or games to go and watch (because I still love the sport and want to be able to actually watch it).
But an average week normally includes working in the studio at SSN, interviews at the Premier League club and watching plenty of football.
How did you end up where you are right now? When did you know you wanted to work in sport?
The simple answer to this was that I got into the back of a taxi and Pep Guardiola was in there, but the longer answer was that I took every opportunity I could and worked for years within football, local radio and across social media and managed to make the most of this.
Then fortunately people had seen the content I was making and I kept getting more and more opportunities to work with other companies and ultimately continue to learn and grow.
It’s amazing who could be watching and how those people end up giving you a chance because they like your stuff.
What is your number one focus when it comes to your work?
My number one focus when it comes to my work is making sure I do the best I can, in that moment and always trying my best to enjoy every minute.
I love football, I love sport and I’m lucky that I get to do that but I also want to make sure I’m good at what I do, so I work hard to be the best version of myself and always bring that to the table.
Can you tell us about a time you failed and what you learned from it?
I could give you 100 times! Nothing is ever perfect, but there’s always an opportunity to learn. Working in local radio was something I loved because it meant to got to became part of something very special and speak to my community.
Plus it was a safe space to fail. I obviously never wanted to make mistakes, but it felt like this was a safe place to do that and quickly learn from them. My whole journey within local radio felt like a rollercoaster of up’s and downs (and success/ failures). But I feel like it shaped me as a presenter and reporter.
There’s so much you can take when you do something and it feels good, you feel like you’ve nailed it. But there’s even more to take away when you mess up and learn what not to do next time.
What are you excited about in your industry at the moment?
I feel like this industry is growing at a speed we’ve never seen before. The demand for content, the amount of sport that’s on and the amount of platforms and social media there is now.
It feels like the space is growing and that excites me because you can see people taking advantage of that and creating content and taking control of their own futures.
I think a lot of people are realising they don’t have to wait for the doors to be opened for them but they can now kick them down themselves.
If you could change one thing about your Industry, what would you change?
I think the audience that watch sport (in particular football) in this country are so reluctant to change and anything new or anything they don’t like is immediately met with so much negativity and criticism.
Yes you don’t have to like something, but that doesn’t mean you have to A) consume it and B) share that opinion.
We can’t all like everything and that’s okay. But it feels like because we’ve done stuff in one way for so long, that to change that and try new things is looked down on.
Sport is a hectic industry, what do you do to switch off?
I think this is something I’ve struggled with in the past. My passion and interests also lie in sports. So it’s hard to just sit and watch, but the older I’ve got the more i’ve tried to just enjoy going to a game or just sitting and watching it.
Plus, I’ve realised that you can’t feel guilty if you choose to do something else than watch the game or listen to the latest podcast. So often, I’ll miss a game to watch Netflix or listen to music in the car instead of a podcast and that’s allowed!
So my top 3 things I do away from work are, going to the gym, watching TV series and listening to podcasts (that aren’t sport related).
What is the one piece of advice you would give to someone wanting to work in the sports industry?
Make content! You’d be amazed at how much you can learn from just creating content using your phone. Instagram stories, reels, posts, tweeting, TikTok. You can be creating so much content and engage with the sports industry by just using your phone. You can get yourself and your face out there by being active on socials.
Plus you can learn so much and use it as practice for talking or writing. If you want to be a presenter, you can get comfortable being on camera. If you want to be a journalist, you can improve your writing skills by just creating that content!
How to connect with Kyle Walker…
All my socials are @kylewalker115. That’s where I document day to day work and life!
Thanks for reading our chat with Kyle Walker! If you want to read more from our Industry Insider series, you can do so by clicking here.