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Jacqui Oatley

Women in Football: Jacqui Oatley

Read about how the sports presenter got involved in football

Broadcast Journalist, BBC

Hometown: Wolverhampton

First Club: Chiswick Ladies

Favourite Men’s Team: Wolverhampton Wanderers

Favourite Women’s Team: Chiswick LFC

In 2007 Jacqui Oatley became the first female football commentator on television, and hers is a story of pursuing a dream, despite any obstacles.

Untill she was 27 she had worked for an intellectual property company, enjoying all the benefits of a well-paid job in the city.

But in her heart she knew she wanted to work in sports journalism, so she took a gamble and started all over again, giving up her job, her flat and returning to university of a year.

"I suddenly realised I was at a crossroads in my life, and I knew that I wanted to do something in sport. I realised I was going to have to take a gamble and start all over again.

"I really had to put everything into this one year. I managed to get a part-time post with BBC Radio Leeds, covering local league football."

Recalling her first match, Jacqui says: "I remember thinking, ‘This is it, my big moment', but when I got there it was a dreadful press box and I was the only woman among all these newspaper journalists.

"These scary moments came early on, but I worked every shift going and got better with experience."

Jacqui is proof that there is more to football than football.

But if you fancy giving things a go, find some fun football activities near you.



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