In a recent appearance on Show on the Road, she shared some incredible parts of her journey to the top.
Show on the Road takes celebrities out of the studio for a personalised road trip around the places that shaped them, launched its 8-episode run last week by following Gogglebox star Scarlett Moffatt on a nostalgic trip home in County Durham.
This week, at the wheel of a G Wagon, host Alex Legouix took Lioness Jill Scott on a trip down memory lane to Manchester, where Jill reminisces on her beginnings in her old stomping grounds at Man City, her dreams about playing for England as a young footballer, on meeting her hero David Beckham – and that time she slipped and tackled Prince William to the ground.
In each episode, Alex takes guests on a trip which combines nostalgic sights with reflections on their careers. From their old school to their favourite chip shop, the chat takes listeners down avenues that no other studio-based show gets to explore.
Here are some of the highlights from an intriguing interview with this remarkable athlete.
Surrounding herself with supportive figures
Jill Scott’s path to success was paved by the wisdom of her mentors and the unwavering support of her coaches and teammates.
Recognising the importance of constructive criticism, she sought out individuals who had her best interests at heart. In her own words:
“I learned to surround myself with people who would give you constructive criticism.
“People that really want the best for you.
“So over the years I felt like there were great managers who really pushed me, but really had my best needs at heart.
“And I think that’s the biggest thing.
“It’s quite a sad world to live in sometimes.
“There are a lot of younger players now who rely on social media for their validation.”
Meeting David Beckham: a childhood dream come true
As a young football enthusiast, Jill Scott idolised David Beckham.
She admired his playing style and looked up to him as the epitome of football greatness.
Fate smiled upon her when she had the opportunity to meet her childhood hero.
Jill vividly recalled how Beckham signed autographs for hours after an England game, leaving an everlasting impact on her.
This encounter inspired her to pledge that if ever in a similar position, she would take the time to bring joy to her fans through autographs.
She said: “Growing up I was obsessed with David Beckham.
“It was everything about him, the way he played. I managed to meet him once. He was probably the most famous footballer out there, and he signed every single autograph. He stayed out there after an England game for hours.
“And I always said if I ever got in the position, if anybody ever asks for my autograph, I’ll stay till that last minute and sign them all because I think it’s so important.
“If you can put a smile on someone’s face just by scribbling your name on a piece of paper like David Beckham did for me that day, and it’s one of my most vivid childhood memory, to think that I might be able to give a child even 10% of that, then I think it’s just such an important thing to do.”
Brushes with Royalty, Prince William and a memorable mishap
Jill Scott’s journey intersected with the British royal family on multiple occasions, primarily through football-related events.
One such encounter involved the unintentional collision between Jill and Prince William during the opening of a pitch in Sunderland.
Forever remembered as the girl who took down the future king while playing football, Jill shares an amusing anecdote of the incident.
Over the years, Prince William continued to support the England team, personally greeting them during tournaments. Upon retiring, Jill received a handwritten letter from the prince, which she treasures as one of her most prized possessions.
She said: “Mine and Prince William’s paths crossed a few times through football. The first one being we were opening a pitch up in Sunderland and I accidentally slipped and wiped him out.
“So he always remembered me for that girl that took him out while I was playing football.
“And then through tournaments, he would always come and greet the England team. When I retired, he actually wrote me a lovely letter. It was handwritten as well, just saying like, well done on your career.
“So I would love for him to present my MBA maybe in the future but feel like I’m being greedy. I’ve got this letter in. It’s one of my most prized possessions.”
Life beyond football: a journey to the celebrity jungle
Transitioning from her illustrious football career, Jill Scott embarked on a unique adventure by participating in the reality TV show “I’m a Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here!”
The jungle experience proved to be a series of surreal moments for Jill, from washing dishes next to Boy George to forging lasting friendships.
Despite the challenges of hunger and homesickness, Jill recognises that the relationships she formed with her fellow contestants were the most valuable aspect of her time in the jungle. Upon reflection, she realized the depth of the experience and the impact it had on her.
She said: “The jungle was a lot of pinch-me moments in general. Like just sitting next to Boy George washing dishes and he’s singing Karma Chameleon. I’m like, it’s so surreal. What is going on? But you know what, through the jungle, I’ve made so many good friends.”
“I think they are the most special things that come from this journey. 100%. The people that I’ve met and the friends that I’ve made.
“Everybody in the jungle surprised me in some way. It was better upon reflection for the experience that I had, but it was more difficult in there than I thought.
“Like, you don’t wanna whinge about being hungry because there’s a lot of people in the world a lot less fortunate than we are, but you didn’t get a lot of food, so you are depleted of energy a lot of the time. So that was difficult.
“Missing home as well, that was difficult. Not necessarily not seeing people because I was used to being on England camp where I wouldn’t see people for four, five weeks.
“But you had your mobile phone and I could check in with Shelly and say, are you okay?
“I could check in with my family, my grandma. So that was difficult, just the element of not knowing how people were at home. And also you think, If I’m coming across as a bad person, then are they getting grief back home? But I think you just lived in this bubble. I forgot about the cameras. You forget that like 10 million people are watching the show.”
“Until you get out and you’re walking down the street and some people are just come and give you a hug because I feel like they’ve got to know you whilst you are in the jungle….it’s lovely.
“It really is. I love having conversations with people, but when you are in there, you just forget about that really.”