Goal!

When I was a student of journalism I began to work as an intern In a local newspaper.

Nobody took me seriously.

I was 17 and I was a woman. There were not so many women journalists working on the streets back then. I remember that when my boss sent me to make an interview or collect some info with a photographer, despite I was the one asking questions and taking notes, everybody talked to the photographer instead than with me.

Particularly reserved to men was the sports desk .

Because my newsroom was very small, once my boss sent me to a press conference to the headquarters of the local soccer club, which plays in the premier league. They were going to introduce its new coach. A Serbian guy who didn’t know a word of Spanish. His manager, also a Serbian, acted as a translator.

My seasoned colleagues began to put their wise questions and the manager translated to the coach each question with a suggested answer. The coach answered whatever he wanted according to his ideas, but then the manager, instead of translating, told the journalists his own version. And there were big differences with the ideas of the coach. He did the same with the club’s manager. I understood everything because my first language is Croatian and I can understand Serbian very well. I quietly took notes of all the real answers and the fake translations.

Only at the end of the press conference I asked in Croatian directly to the coach if he was going to move his family to Pamplona. Everybody looked at me perplexed. Above all the manager who realized that I had understood his foul play with the question and answers during the whole session.

When we finished, my seasoned colleagues came to me to ask me about what was my question and the answer of the coach. I told them. But nobody asked me about the rest of the press conference. So I came back to my newsroom with the best story. the one of how the manager had tried to deceived the press and the club taking advantage the lack of knowledge of the language of the new coach.

An exclusive. At 17. In sports. That day I scored a goal to all the sports journalists of the city.

Perplexed

Author: Olga Brajnović

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