We All Love Leeds is happy to unveil our latest'10 questions with Adam Pope. The Leeds United journalist has seen plenty of ups and downs whilst covering the mighty whites and here are his thoughts on a 10 year career following Lufc.
1, What is the reason you went into journalism?
It was not part of a grand plan. I had worked in a Builders' Merchants for 8 years and really loathed it by the end. So after a brief time in the Brewing industry I made the leap into sports broadcasting. I'd had a bit of a career defining moment when I look back to when I was about 25 when I realised I needed a hobby away from work. So I tried my hand at commentating on football with Huddersfield Hospital Radio. That gave me some valuable experience for several years and I always think how fortunate I was that the boss there, Richard Parry, gave me a chance. Without his help I would never have had a prayer of even attempting a career in broadcasting.
2, Favourite memory or match you've reported on at Elland Road?
I began commentating on Leeds in 05/06 so the first game working with Eddie Gray was special for BBC Leeds. A 2-1 win over Millwall it was with David Healy taking centre stage. I was so nervous. The victory over Bristol Rovers for promotion was special too as my good friend Andy Ritchie was working alongside me. I have to say though Noel Whelan makes every game a cracking day out and I have the time of my life working with him, Katherine Hannah and Gareth Jones. The best single moment of commentary at Elland Road would be Luciano Becchio's goal against Millwall in the play off semi final in 2009. Ben Parker was superb in that move and he was also good fun in the commentary box too.
Elland Road holds lots of memories but away from Leeds United the greatest was seeing Everton batter Spurs 4-1 in the FA Cup semi final in 1995. It's weird to think that a decade later I would be working on the gantry above where I was in the West Stand that day.
3, Best player you've seen at Leeds in your time as a commentator for BBC Radio Leeds?
Lewis Cook. His ability, gear change, intelligence, bravery and temperament are exceptional. He is an impressive person too. A lot of credit must go to the Academy for developing him along with his family. He is a very special talent and he edges it ahead of Fabian Delph for me.
4, Most difficult manager / Head Coach you've interviewed, either Leeds or other club?
Paul Bracewell when he was in charge at Halifax Town. They say you should never meet your heroes. On this occasion the saying rang true. He was prickly. Darko Milanic was a nice man but said very little. However he wasn't given long to develop a relationship with any of us.
5, What is the best player you've ever seen in your role as a commentator?
Wayne Rooney. I was very fortunate to be commentating on the Everton v Arsenal game when he came off the bench as a 16 year old to score on his debut with a pearler at Goodison.
6, Funniest thing that's happened to you or on the pitch whilst on radio commentating?
The funniest thing I was involved in was when a Chester fan rang the phone in to speak to Eddie and me in August 2006. Leeds had gone through the League Cup tie 1-0 at Elland Road but the away fan thought it was only the first leg and that they had a chance. The best part was he told us he had bought a ticket for the non existent second leg!
7, Do you have a favourite sport away from football?
Golf. I struggle to play off a 15 handicap but love it . I've been very privileged to work at the last three Open Championships. It's a sport I have come back to after many years away. You'll find me around Cookridge Golf Club quite regularly.
8, Your opinion on officials since you started your career in journalism, are they better or worse?
Better than I ever gave them credit for when I played Sunday League. Officials do make the right call in the vast majority of cases, especially the big decisions. My son is a referee and I can tell you that a tremendous amount effort goes into raising the standard of and encouraging officials by the local FAs and Referees' Associations. It's a role they adopt with a real sense of responsibility and often as a vocation.
9, Favourite away ground?
To work at I would say the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff or Manchester City. I love how you can walk out of the Millennium straight into the city .Wembley is far better to go as a fan than as a commentator. Fulham last season was great because it's such a unique stadium.
10, What is your prediction of Leeds' final Championship position in 2015/16?
Top ten with a push for the play offs.
We'd like to thank Adam for taking time to take our quiz and we hope that his reign as one of the best people to cover and be around Lufc continues for years to come. We at We All Love Leeds would not mind another 10 years of Popey and Noel in the gantry, Get In!
By Keith Ingham
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