Our hoppers

Sam Bytheway


I’m Sam, a Sports Journalist from Manchester and I’m about to graduate from the University of Gloucestershire with a Sports Journalism degree.

I’ve been watching sport all my life and I have been writing about it for a long time too.

The majority of the sport I watch has been football and rugby but I also love cricket and ice hockey.

I thoroughly enjoy watching all levels of sport and exploring grounds and places across the country, so here is a little bit about my travels so far…

Who do you support?

I’ve been supporting Leeds United all my life. Before University I had a season ticket for a number of seasons and also went to away games, some of which were my favourite of all time. I’ve never properly seen Leeds in the Premier League, so I’m hoping that changes. Being local to Manchester, I also follow Altrincham FC and in other sports Sale Sharks rugby team and Lancashire Cricket.

How Many Grounds Have You Been To?

61 grounds across all sports. This includes 28 of the 92 (well 91 currently), this isn’t as many as I’d have liked as the majority of these have been in the north of England as that’s where I’ve been most of my life.

The 61 grounds also includes three outside of Europe, all in Australia.

Best game you’ve been to?

My favourite game is a tie between two Leeds away games, the first of these came in December 2011 when I travelled to Turf Moor. Leeds found themselves 2-0 down at half-time before a second-half comeback with goals from Max Gradel, Luciano Becchio and Jonny Howson turned the game around, the Leeds fans were unreal as usual and it was just a great day out.

The game that ties with this is the 4-0 away win at Nottingham Forest, days after the death of Gary Speed. After singing his name for 11 minutes from the 11th minute, Robert Snodgrass opened the scoring as the singing was finishing, a perfect tribute.

First game you went to?

I’m currently unsure about what my first ever game was, I think I was taken to a Leeds game in the Premier League, but the first game I have a slight recollection of was Leeds 1-1 Wolves in April 2005 with Shaun Derry scoring Leeds’ goal…

Best ground you’ve been to?

Despite my bias to Elland Road and Leeds, and as much as I love the ground I won’t pick it as my favourite. Instead I’ll pick Atherton Collieries Alder House, a classic non-league ground with a sloping pitch and a great club too!


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