The 5th Annual Football Blogging Awards held at Old Trafford
- The winners of the 2016 Football Blogging Awards were announced at an awards ceremony held at Old Trafford
The 5th annual Football Blogging awards took place last Thursday; an event dedicated to the recognition of the best footballing blogs and aspiring journalists from around the globe.
However, the question remains whether football blogging will continue its upward trajectory in popularity and eventually challenge the status quo of the industry or continue to be the voice of those outside the mainstream?
This was a consistent theme reiterated throughout the awards ceremony by the speakers, guest and nominees', each discussing the growing influence blogs are having on the way people are interacting with football.
The numbers back up this claim as 300,000 fans voted this year for their favourite blogs, more than twice the number who voted the previous year and four times as much as the year before that.
The increase of fan interaction on social media directly correlates with the growth and prestige of the event, with this year’s award ceremony being biggest ever with over 700 people in attendance and household names such as Adidas and Budweiser sponsoring the event.
There was a glitz and glamour to the FBAs, yet there was a light-heartedness to the proceedings, as people were more than happy to converse opinions, ideas and mutual admiration. It allowed burgeoning bloggers and aspiring journalists to make mutually beneficial connections and rub shoulders with seasoned professionals. There was even chance to test your skills at football table tennis before the awards commenced.
For each award there were two winners, one voted for solely by the fans and the other from a judging panel consisting of BBC's Phil McNulty, ex-footballer Danny Webber, former Everton Ladies goalkeeper Rachel Brown-Finnis and more.
The winners from the 2016 FBAs:
Best Football Club Blog
Fans’ Choice – Anfield HQ
Judges’ Choice – I’d Radebe Leeds
Best New Football Blog
Fans’ Choice – johnjamessite
Judges’ Choice – The Football Lab
Best Young Football Blogger
Fans’ Choice – Matt Lynch
Judges’ Choice – Jordan-Luke McDonald
Best Football Podcast
Fans’ Choice – The Anfield Wrap
Judges’ Choice – The Gaffer Tapes
Best International Football Blog
Fans’ Choice – Phil Mac Giolla Bhain
Judges’ Choice – Football Paradise
Best Video Football Blog
Fans’ Choice – 442oons
Judges’ Choice – Palmers FC
Best Social Football Account
Fans’ Choice – TheSPORTbible
Judges’ Choice – Empire Of The Kop
Best Football Influencer
Fans’ Choice – Stan Collymore
Judges’ Choice – Guillem Balague
Best Football Freestyler
Fans’ Choice – The F2
Judges’ Choice – Andrew Henderson
Best Gambling Football Blog
Fans’ Choice – TheODDSBible
Judges’ Choice – The Sack Race
Best Gaming Football Blog
Fans’ Choice – Spencer FC
Judges’ Choice – Strikerless
The FBA’s reward the unsung heroes who manage their own blogs simply for the love of the game and it will be exciting to see how the FBAs evolve in years to come.