BEHIND THE SCENES – JACK MANTHORPE – CHELSEA WEBSITE

By Peter Sampson
In Staff
Sep 4th, 2005

Continuing our profile on some of the media staff at Chelsea FC. I was able to have a brief chat to the guy behind the official CFC web site, Jack Manthorpe or Jax as Ken Bates called him.

Just a little background information. Jack had his own Chelsea web site around 8 years ago and it’s because of that site that I got involved with web development. So it’s quite possible that without Jack CFCnet may not had been developed! So if you don’t like CFCnet then you can blame Jack!

Jack or Jax?

Jax was never meant to be a nickname and anyone away from Chelsea calls me Jack. I called my original unofficial website “Jack’s Unofficial Chelsea Website” but for no apparent reason abbreviated Jack’s to Jax (as it sounded the same).
Ken Bates asked me the same question on my first day working at Chelsea and I told him the same answer, prompting him to reply “well as long as you work here I’m calling you Jax”. So who was I to argue! So it’s stuck – but it’s not on my birth certificate!

Jack what do you do at Chelsea FC?

In short I design, maintain, create content and hopefully improve the Official Chelsea Website and help out with other Internet related activities at Chelsea.

How long have you worked for Chelsea FC?

8 ½ years

Most embarrassing moment?

Coming out of the toilet and bumping into Vialli – literally.

Favourite moment?

Being around the club and behind the scenes when we won the FA Cup in 1997

What did you do before you worked for Chelsea?

I worked as a technical support engineer for an Internet Service provider.

Is it true Ken headhunted you?

Yes, sort of. I received an email from him out of the blue saying he liked the unofficial site and wanted to meet me. I figured he was either going to offer me a job or sue me! (Ken later threatened to see me)

What are your favourite non football related URLs and why?

Working 7 days a week on the Chelsea website I try to do other things not related to the Internet in my spare time if can help it, so don’t actually look at that many other websites. Generally only regularly visit practical sites (news, weather, maps etc) or well designed ones from a professional point of view.

And your favourite football ones?

Again don’t look at too many, but Newsnow and UEFA.com are useful and well designed sites.

I think you have the best job in the world! Do you?

Wouldn’t swap with too many, apart from probably the players!

How long have you supported CFC?

If going from my first Chelsea memory then 27 years

First game. Earliest memory.

First memory – Chelsea 4 Liverpool 2 FA Cup game 1978

First game – the slightly less glamorous Chelsea 2 – 4 Shrewsbury 1980

Favourite player past and present.

Past – Pat Nevin

Present – John Terry if being unoriginal or slightly more original Gudjohnsen when he’s on form.

Will Chelsea win something this season?

Yes. Premiership most likely, cups even for us are bit of a lottery

Have you ever spoken to Roman?

No

Arsenal or Man Utd?

Can I pass? The last 2 or 3 years Man Utd have probably been the lesser of two evils.

Champions League or Premiership?

Premiership

Matchday Programme or the new magazine?

Programme

John Terry or Frank Lampard?

Close but John Terry as he’s home grown

Tommy Langley or Kerry Dixon?

First game was 1980 so Dixon in his prime was more my era

CFCnet.co.uk or Blueandwhitearmy.net?

CFCnet.co.uk

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