Alex Scott’s year in TV: ‘When Eriksen collapsed – it was about being honest’

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Alex Scott, 37, signed for Arsenal at the age of eight. She won 140 caps for England, before retiring in 2017 to pursue a full-time career as a broadcaster, going on to become a pundit for the BBC and Sky. In 2021, she became the presenter of BBC One’s Football Focus.

You were on TV in 2021 covering both the Euros and the Olympics – what were your highlights?
I pinch myself when I look at the things I’ve been working on. For all the people who say I’m ticking a box because I’m black and female, there are more people who have stopped me in the street to tell me to keep going and that what I’m doing is great. That gives me the energy to keep going. When I was presenting and Christian Eriksen collapsed during the Euros, that was all about being real and honest in that moment. I remember getting stick for saying I’d just texted my mum to tell her I loved her, but that moment had been such a huge reminder to reach out to your loved ones.

Who would play you in the TV show of your life?
Zendaya. She is incredible, just everything about her, and Euphoria is such an important TV show.

Alex Scott holding a BBC Sport microphone
Alex Scott: ‘Not a lot makes me angry. I try not to have that energy in my life.’ Photograph: SPP/Rex/Shutterstock

What makes you angry?
Not a lot, to be honest. I try not to have that energy in my life, and to deal with situations and move on.

Your favourite TV show growing up?
Saturday night TV used to be the one, like The Generation Game, Man O Man, and Blind Date. That would be the one day you were allowed a takeaway, and you’d sit down and watch those sorts of shows. I feel like our lives have changed so much now – you don’t plan your life around sitting and watching anything at a set time like that.

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If your life were a TV show, what would the title be?
Probably the same as the book I’ve got coming out, which is called How Not to Be Strong. I’ve always thought I had to be strong and independent. It’s drilled into you. But, actually, what I’ve realised now is you can untrain yourself.

Who is the most famous person in your phone contacts?
I have such a mix of people, from people I’ve grown up with to sportspeople to Niall from One Direction. How many contacts do I have? 1,151.

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