Matt Cooper (Irish journalist)

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Matt Cooper
Born (1966-07-21) 21 July 1966 (age 53)
EducationUniversity College Cork
Dublin City University
OccupationRadio/TV presenter, author, journalist
EmployerToday FM
Notable credit(s)
The Last Word

Matt Cooper (born 21 July 1966) is an Irish journalist, author, television presenter and radio presenter of The Last Word on Today FM. He is also a former editor of the Sunday Tribune.

Early life[edit]

Matt Cooper was born in Cork in 1966[1] and was educated at the North Monastery (North Mon) school and later at University College Cork.[2] As well as radio, sport was another early passion. Cooper played rugby with Sunday's Well and later captained the under-20s team. He also had a fondness for GAA, and played Gaelic football and hurling for the Bishopstown GAA club.[3]

He is a former editor of the Sunday Tribune, appointed in September 1996, as well as a former business editor of the Irish Independent. Then aged 30, he was the youngest person in Ireland to be appointed an editor of a national newspaper.[4] Cooper was awarded Business Journalist of the Year in 1992 and 1999 and also National Journalist of the Year in 1993 and 2001.[2] He is a graduate of Dublin City University.

The Last Word[edit]

Cooper presents the news review show The Last Word on Today FM from 16:30 to 19:00 every weekday. In 2008, he spent hours recreating the iconic picture used for the cover of Abbey Road to publicise Today FM's move across the River Liffey only to admit "I'm not really a Beatles fan. Maybe I'm just a little bit too young or something".[5] Cooper writes a weekly column for the Irish Examiner and one for the Irish edition of The Sunday Times newspaper.

In 2011, Kim Bielenberg said in the Irish Independent that Cooper would make a worthy replacement for Pat Kenny at RTÉ with Kenny in the "autumn of his career". Bielenberg also said Cooper was "never going to be the next Graham Norton".[6]

Television work[edit]

Matt Cooper is a frequent host of live UEFA Champions League coverage on TV3. He has also hosted live rugby and GAA matches on the same channel. Cooper supports Leeds United [7]

To coincide with the 100 year anniversary of Battle of the Somme in July 2016, Cooper narrated the RTE documentary Heroes Of The Somme, which uncovered the stories of some of the men that won The Victoria Cross fighting there.[8]

Since September 2017, Cooper has co-hosted The Tonight Show on TV3.


Cooper's book, Who Really Runs Ireland, was published in 2009. It examines Irish businessmen and politicians and their relationships.

  • Who Really Runs Ireland? (2010)
  • How Ireland Really Went Bust (2011)

In 2015, a biography of Tony O'Reilly, titled The Maximalist: The Rise and Fall of Tony O’Reilly was published by Gill and Macmillan.[9][10]

Visit to North Korea[edit]

In January 2014, Cooper secretly accompanied Dennis Rodman to North Korea for Kim Jong-un's big birthday basketball game.[11] His cover was blown when they were seen together on Sky News at an airport in Beijing.[12][13] Today FM confirmed Cooper's presence in North Korea and that he would meet Kim Jong-un while there.[14] A documentary was filmed based on Rodman's trip and the basketball game he organised versus North Korea; entitled Dennis Rodman's Big Bang in Pyongyang,[15] it received a cinematic release in July 2015 and featured narration by Cooper, who also featured extensively in the film.[16][17]


  1. ^ "Matt Cooper - Features - Interview - Hot Press".
  2. ^ a b "2015 UCC Alumni Achievement Awards - University College Cork (UCC)". Retrieved 10 April 2016.
  4. ^ "Today FM's Matt Cooper on his marriage: 'Aileen has had to sacrifice a lot career-wise' – Irish Mirror Online". Retrieved 10 April 2016.
  5. ^ "Radio heads follow the fab four". Irish Independent. 28 February 2008. Archived from the original on 4 September 2012. Retrieved 16 March 2008.
  6. ^ Bielenberg, Kim. "The top 10 waiting in the wings". Irish Independent. 22 October 2011.
  7. ^ "Man Utd glory days may be over as club runs out of money and luck". 8 January 2010.
  8. ^ "HEROES OF THE SOMME - RTÉ Presspack".
  9. ^ "New Biography Of Tony O'Reilly - BizPlus". 18 September 2015.
  10. ^ "Home".
  11. ^ O'Connell, Hugh. "Today FM's Matt Cooper is in North Korea with Dennis Rodman".
  12. ^ "TodayFM's Matt Cooper travels to North Korea with Dennis Rodman -".
  13. ^ "Dennis Rodman departs for North Korea basketball exhibition". RTÉ News. Retrieved on 6 January 2014.
  14. ^ Hamilton, Sam (6 January 2014). "Today FM's Matt Cooper to meet North Korean leader Kim Jung-Un". Archived from the original on 6 January 2014.
  15. ^ "Dennis Rodman's Big Bang in PyongYang". 25 January 2015 – via IMDb.
  16. ^ Brophy, Daragh. "Matt Cooper was genuinely worried the North Koreans might 'get rid of' him".
  17. ^ "Film about Dennis Rodman's bizarre visit to North Korea, narrated by Matt Cooper, gets rave review from Variety -".

External links[edit]