Paddy Power teams up with JOE to launch ‘Liquid Football’ show

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by Mark Johnson

London-listed bookmaker Paddy Power has teamed up with online publisher JOE to launch a new weekly football show called ‘Liquid Football’. 

It will be hosted by 5Live and Sky Sports TV presenter Kelly Cates, and over the course of the upcoming football season will feature regulars Jonathan Walters, Wayne Bridge and Steve Sidwell, with guest appearances from the likes of Luis Garcia, Wes Brown and Darren Bent.

The move into video content follows the launch of a free football magazine by Paddy Power earlier this week called Pitch Invader. 

Growing long-form content 

Building on its growing ‘JOE Presents:’ slate of original, long-form and multi-format productions, Liquid Football is one of a number of new shows from JOE in 2019. 

Other shows include ‘Swanny’s Cricket Show’, ‘House of Rugby’, which has become the biggest rugby show in the UK, ‘Boys Don’t Cry’ with Russell Kane - a show that aims to get men talking about the things they don’t usually talk about, and ‘TKO’ JOE’s boxing show hosted by world champion Carl Frampton. 

JOE is also in talks with potential commercial partners to collaborate on other projects including an MMA show.

Weekly show 

In partnership with bookmaker Paddy Power and together with MediaCom, the weekly show is recorded in a purpose built studio in JOE’s London HQ. 

It will be led by Kelly Cates, one of Britain’s most respected sports broadcasters, and an array of talent who have played at World Cups, European Championships, as well as winning Premier Leagues and Champions Leagues. 

Talent includes footballers who have played at the highest levels of the game, had multi-million pound transfers, but have also ground it out in the Championship or sat on the bench and suffered the frustration of being a fringe player. 

The Liquid Football squad has seen every facet of modern football and shared dressing rooms with those making headlines week in, week out in the Premier League, JOW said. 

There will be more big name guests throughout the season, the firm said, and Jon, Wayne, Steve and Co will bring on their old team-mates all with the aim to take fans behind closed doors and give an insightful and no-holds-barred take on the modern game.

“Football has been JOE's heartland from day one, and this show is yet another step in underlining our dedication to the best in football content and journalism”, Simon Clancy, Liquid Football lead producer and Head of Programmes at JOE said. 

“In our lead host - we’ve signed the best in the business in Kelly Cates - a hugely renowned and admired broadcaster who will tie the show together like no one else can. 

“Put simply, there is nothing out there right now like Liquid Football and we have a real dream-team at the helm”.

First ep looked at life after football 

The first episode aired on Wednesday 7 August and reflected on Walters’ recent retirement and asked what happens when the cheering stops. One-year down that track already, Sidwell gave his insight into coping with life after football.

The episode also looked at the transfer window and what really happens when a player wants a move, and previewed the new Premier League season with a special focus on Liverpool, City, Solskjaer’s problems and how Sidwell’s old team-mate Frank Lamard will get on at Chelsea. 

Kelly Cates said: “It’s been really exciting gearing up for Liquid Football with the team at JOE. There might be a lot of football shows out there, but we’re doing things very differently with this and that’s what drew me to get involved. 

“I think what’s going to make the show special for fans is how it will be driven entirely by player’s own insights and experiences. 

“We want our chats to bring fans where they haven’t been before - into their club’s dressing rooms, training sessions, on bus journeys! It’s going to be a lot of fun!”

Paddy Power Marketing Director Michelle Spillane said: “We are very excited about Paddy Power’s partnership with JOE and their latest venture in sports content. 

“It is fantastic for Paddy Power as it allows us to bring our brand to football fans through JOE’s multiple digital and social channels with a brand new show that will be dripping with insight, sharp wit, and agenda-setting football chat.

“Liquid Football is a unique content proposition in the football entertainment market, and we’re delighted to be part of this innovative new format.”

JOE’s Hayley Bourne, who has led the partnership and was recently promoted to Head of Brand Partnerships at JOE, said: “Having created major hit shows in other sports like rugby, boxing and cricket, we’re really excited to launch a show focusing on the sport that has been JOE’s heartland from day one. 

“We’ve been working very closely with the team at Paddy Power to create something we can all be truly proud of, and we’re confident we will achieve that.”

Watch on YouTube

Fans can watch full episodes of Liquid Football on JOE’s YouTube channel and IGTV, and listen on all major podcast platforms, with select highlights going out across JOE’s social media channels. 

Episodes will also be accompanied by written features, JOE said.

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