Three Questions with Charlie Is A Red originally appeared in the September 18th, 2015 edition of our newsletter, The Raven. Read it HERE.
Last season, while watching YouTube channel FullTimeDevils, we came across THIS VIDEO. It’s 1:14 of astute football analysis that’s inspired a slew of our favorite sayings and hashtags. #Outpassioned #11BestFriends #AshleyYang. We were blown away by young Charlie Wallwork’s (aka @CharlieIsARed) poise and delivery, and immediately invited him to break down United with us on the Pod [LISTEN HERE]. Since then, Charlie has gone on to become a junior report for Manchester United, interviewing the likes of Mike Smalling. In this edition of Three Questions, we catch up with the next Arlo White to take the temperature on the Red Half of Manchester and talk about his burgeoning broadcasting career.
MIB: Positives: Third place. Solid at the back. Great win against Liverpool. Negatives: Some dodgy offensive performances. Luke Shaw's injury. A Champions League loss to PSV. Sort us out. What is the mood in Manchester right now?
Charlie: Optimistic but sad.
Sad especially for Luke Shaw after his terrible injury against PSV. He has really been one of our best players since the start of the season. The support on Twitter for him has been massive and it has been wonderful to see all his teammates tweet their support as well. I feel that through this adversity the team will get stronger though.
Yet optimistic at the same time. The win against Liverpool and the way we played at PSV is beginning to show that we are going in the right direction as a team. We played some of our best offensive game so far this year at PSV and lost. It's a funny old game.
MiB: A lot of debate over who plays where in the United XI. If Charlie is a Red was LVG, who is your XI and how do you line them up?
Charlie: My Team would be a 4-2-1-3 formation.
Goalkeeper: David de Gea. In my opinion the best goalkeeper in the world and I'm so glad he's signed for another four years.
Back Four: Shaw (Rojo in his absence), Blind, Smalling and Darmian. At the start of the season there was talk that our defence was a weakness, however these four have performed brilliantly in the first games of the season, deserving to remain unchanged game after game.
Midfield: Schneiderlin (to protect the defence) and Schweinsteiger to boss the play.I would have Mata in a free roaming role behind a front three.
Up Front: It's not been tried yet by LVG, but I would love to see Memphis, Rooney and Martial alternating in offence, keeping defenders on their toes. I think Rooney will bring the best out of the two new signings.
On the Bench: I would have Young, Fellaini and Herrera, who all have something different so are able to change the dynamic of a game should the score not be going in our favour.
MiB: Of the new acquisitions, who is your favorite?
Charlie: This is a tough one. They are all good and I like them all for different reasons. Since I have to choose one, it has to be Bastian Schweinsteiger so far. A true leader who bosses the midfield and does the basic things exceptionally well. The thing I admire most is that for a player who has won everything in the game he still shows so much passion and openly shows his excitement in winning games and playing for Man Utd. This inspires me.
MiB: You've actually started working for the club as a junior reporter, even getting to interview the likes of Chris Smalling. How do you prepare for these interviews? What's the secret to a great interview?
Charlie: Interviewing players from my favourite team Manchester United, is my dream come true.
I try to follow a rule when thinking of questions. I need to be factual and knowledgeable because of my age to be taken seriously, but also interesting and funny.
I research each player and watch endless videos looking for interesting things to ask about. Since players must get asked the same type of question over and over again I trying to find something unique but also interesting from a young person’s point of view.
I can also get away with a bit of banter because of my age. I recently managed to make Manchester United and England's Chris Smalling pull a funny face on camera copying one of his teammates Phil Jones. I bet Arlo White hasn't managed that!
MiB: If you could interview one person, who would it be?
Charlie: Sorry, I really can't choose between two people.
My favourite player is Ronaldo but I think I would be too starstruck to even speak. I would also love to interview Sir Alex, the stories that man must be able to tell would be insane.
MiB: Give us your prediction for the United season. Where do they finish?
Charlie: I think United will finish second place in the EPL, particularly if Chelsea continue to play the way they have in the first five games of the season. Unfortunately the blue half of Manchester are the team to beat this year.
In the Champions League we will get through the group stages and the first knockout round of 16, but I am not sure of how far we will go beyond that.
MiB: Most of the people we interview are a little older than you. A little more jaded by life. We always ask them for a piece of life advice, something they've learned. Now we'd like to ask you.
Charlie: I have always watched and read everything soccer-related I could but was scared of using social media on the Internet. Then a chance meeting with a United fan channel called FullTimeDevils changed all of that. Leaving a United vs. City derby match I was asked to give my thoughts on the game. The video went viral and, hey, one year later I was interviewing United first-teamers for MUTV. So my advice is simply - don't be scared of trying something you want to do.