Meet the Leeds United fan who worked at McDonald's to fund YouTube channel and now has nearly 250k subscribers

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When Leeds United fan Ellis Platten set up a YouTube channel, his aim was to reach 100 subscribers.

Ellis was keen to be able to showcase his channel and its following to help get into university. He eventually decided against attending university but nearly a decade on, the channel is still going – and has 237,000 subscribers.

Creating content is a full-time job for Ellis, aged 25, but this was not always the case. Earlier on in his journey, he worked part-time at a McDonald’s branch in order to fund the creation of videos on his channel, which is named ‘AwayDays’. He told the Yorkshire Evening Post: “The aim was only ever to get experience on camera and then the videos snowballed to the point where I was at a crossroads with what I wanted to do. I wanted to get into football and presenting but then I sort of realised I was already doing it. I was already doing what I wanted to do, just through a platform.

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"I didn't really put any effort into it until lockdown 2020. I used it almost as just a video blog, documenting me and my friends going to football matches. I was just showing my experiences. I grew up up as a Leeds fan in Norwich because my mum's side of the family are from Leeds. Getting to Leeds each week was three and a half hours there and three and a half hours back. I'm from a working class family and we just didn't have the money. I worked at a McDonald's part-time to fund doing the videos. I was going to local games and then slowly but surely started branching out.”

Ellis is an avid Leeds United supporter.Ellis is an avid Leeds United supporter.
Ellis is an avid Leeds United supporter.

The channel features football content, ranging from matchday vlogs to football kit shopping and collaborations with other social media creators. In a recent video, he even became York City’s mascot Yorkie the Lion for a day, and his content has helped land him presenting gigs with the likes of the BBC, GOAL and the Emirates FA Cup.

He has also used his platform to help combat gambling addiction. As well as being open about his own experiences. he has worked on a campaign aimed at helping people stop gambling, with former footballers Paul Merson and Gilly Flaherty. He said: “I realised how much of a negative impact it had on my life. I'm always quite an open book anyway. I wanted to help other people and the amount of messages about the gambling stuff I've received is ridiculous. Even if it stops one or two problem gamblers before they've had a chance to become one, it's really important to do.”

Ellis plans to continue his presenting work but his YouTube channel will not be tacking a back seat any time soon. He said: “The aim is to still try and kick on. I'm really aware of the lifespan of what I do. You either have to evolve as a creator and find a new audience or avenue, or it just dies off. It's like being a footballer - with less pay and a shorter lifespan.”