We meet up with Paul Manning from AnfieldFM – an internet radio station for Liverpool supporters, streaming the sounds of Merseyside around the world.
Hi Paul, nice to meet you. Tell us a little about Anfield FM, how it came about and the idea behind it?
I came up with the idea of a radio station for Liverpool supporters to try and get the views of real supporters put across to a wider audience. I was sick of hearing so called pundits talk crap about our club and felt that we could try and re-dress the balance and let the fans have their say.
I was running the station by myself for about a year and although I had had some success during that time, it was clear that in order for me to get the station to where it needed to go that I needed help, so I was looking for a partner and Jockey was helping me out with reports from the North American tour and seemed to be enjoying being involved.
We are both from a business background and had worked together before, so I invited him to become involved officially with AnfieldFM in August and he came on board and now that there are 2 of us managing the business we are able to achieve a lot more.
And what about those who run the show? Tell us a little about yourselves?
I am 44, married with kids run an accident management business. Jockey is 48 and runs an import business.
I’ve been going the game since 1978 and Jockey went to his first match in 1973.
He is addicted to travelling to see Liverpool and will still be found wherever the reds are on a pre-season tour or an exotic european away.
I’m not as exciting as that I’m afraid and just get to a good few aways and perhaps a Euro jaunt or two to somewhere close.
Obviously with the success of The Anfield Wrap, it has shown there is an audience for audio Liverpool FC channels…
There is definitely a channel for audio although the fact that we are both spoken word is about the only similarity between the two business models.
They have done really well and deliver a very professional product.
How can people listen?
We are an internet radio station, so the best place to listen to us is via our website www.anfieldfm.co.uk.
For the best listening experience, we recommend turning off the little radio player and using one of the Media Players embedded on the site.
We are also available on smartphones and tablets via the TuneIn Radio app. Just download the app and then search for AnfieldFM.
How was Anfield FM been received so far?
We are now regularly getting over 100,000 listener tune-ins each month. These aren’t website “hits” by the way, these are actual people tuning into our station each month.
We have just over 10,000 unique listeners at present from 137 countries around the world, so on the whole we are delighted with how it’s going, but of course we always want to get bigger and better.
What’s the plans for the future? Where do you see Anfield FM a year from now?
A couple of times last season we reached our initial target of having 100,000 listener tune -ins per month (around both cup finals), this season we hit that target in August and maintained it in September, so our next target is to get 200,000 tune-ins per month by the end of the season.
Currently we’ve got 12 DJ’s playing regular weekly music / chat shows and also 5 weekly Live debate shows, but it still involves repeating each show 2 or 3 times per week.
In a year we should be able to forget about repeating shows and have 100% fresh output every day, which we think will generate many more listeners.
You were one of the representatives at the LFC fans meeting with Brendan Rodgers last month, what’s your thoughts on the new boss and the direction we’re going in?
We think Brendan is a good man and he obviously has a vision for the club. Whether he gets the time he needs to accomplish this is another matter, but we are right behind him and ask for every supporter to give him the time he needs to bed his squad and his ideas in.
We love Death By Football!
We’re often asked here, jokingly, that if LFC decide to leave Anfield for a new stadium, will we change the name of the website! So are you happy that seemingly Anfield looks likely to remain LFC’s home for the future?
Haha, good point that.
We’d like to see a re-developed Anfield, rather than a new stadium on Stanley Park, never mind a new stadium somewhere away from Anfield.
But if the club did ever move away from Anfield, we’d keep the name of our station. We are traditional like that!