By Rebecca Hawksworth

Late nights and early mornings – UCFB graduate Jay Taylor goes to extreme lengths to cover one American MLS side.

Since setting up the @AllOrlandoCity Twitter account in February 2016, Jay has become one of the go-to accounts for Orlando City fans. He covers each match during the season with live updates on the social media website, as well as on Facebook and YouTube. Incredibly, he does it all from his home in Harrogate, North Yorkshire!

Describing how his passion for Orlando City came from and where his desire to create his own channel for the football club came from, Jay said: I go to Orlando on holiday every year and have done for a long time now – I love it there! The football club gained my attention when they became an MLS team. After being a social media football reporter for five years at two different clubs, I wanted to ramp up my profile and thought this was the perfect idea.”

Incredibly, Jay does all this alongside his full-time job at i2i Sports as a media and communications officer, as well as being Tadcaster Albion FC’s media manager.

On his time spent in Orlando, he added: “I gained press accreditation at an Orlando match in June 2016, which was a great honour for me. I saw three Orlando matches both on that trip and again this year. I got to report on the games live from the press box and then after the match had access to the press conference with the manager and players.”

Choosing to provide live coverage of a team that’s based half way around the world is certainly not an easy task. With the time zone of the US’ east coast being five hours behind the UK, and the west coast eight hours behind, Jay has a heavy work load both day and night.

Jay, a graduate of the BA (Hons) Football Business & Media programme, said: “The time difference makes it extremely tough. The earliest kick-offs are usually 10pm UK time, but they are quite rare. The normal kick-off time is 12:35am, but it can go even later than that with the latest being 3:30am! Having a full-time job in social media which sees me work lots of hours in the day can make it challenging to run this channel.”

However, Jay believes all the time and effort that he dedicates to his channel will be worth it in the long run. He added: “I get great interaction from the fans on social media and they seem to enjoy what I do and that makes it worthwhile for me. I also feel if you work hard enough you will get to where you want to be one day. I want to work in soccer media in the US and I hope to actually call Orlando my home one day.”