Open Mic On Five Live

Martin Belam by Martin Belam, 20 September 2005

It is one of my favourite nights of the year - open mic night on Radio Five Live's Sport on Five.

They are covering what would otherwise be a non-descript evening of early round Carling Cup football with 21 reporters at 21 grounds. A couple are ex-footballers making their journalistic debut, there is a chance to hear some of the BBC's regional sports reporters, and Steve Claridge is on as well. Currently one reporter is actually in with the Bournemouth fans at their match against Wigan, and another is pitch side standing between the managers at Selhurst Park. Whenever there is action around the grounds the reporter just shouts out and barges into whatever is happening. It is exciting, and pleasingly chaotic.

I'd love to hear Radio Five Live try to pull this off on a Saturday afternoon - maybe they could try the first Saturday of the Football League season - they'd need 30 reporters though, but there would be no Premiership to distract them.

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