Footballers are a funny bunch, are they not? While they amaze fans with their antics on the pitch, give them a mobile phone and access to Twitter and in one 140 character rant, they can send the social networking site into meltdown. Whether you play for Reading, Chelsea, Tottenham Hotspur, Newcastle United or Bolton Wanderers, one hit of the retweet button from an account with a four figure follower count and it effectively goes viral.
Sandro, Tottenham Hotspur - #sandroBeast
Ah Sandro, when you aren’t puking on the football pitch, you’re busting out ‘I Gotta Feeling’ on the guitar at home. Despite signing for Tottenham Hotspur over two years ago, the Brazilian powerhouse continues to endear himself to the White Hart Lane faithful, with his latest hashtaggery one that fans can relate to.
A couple of weeks ago, Sandro was performing a Twitter Q & A session, as many pro footballers have undertaken recently. The interactivity with fans bolsters the relationship between the two parties, allowing supporters to garner an in depth knowledge into the mysterious life of a professional footballer.
With the young tenacious midfielder answering queries thrown his way, the Spurs man began his own hashtag, that of #sandroBeast. Supporters have labelled the Brazilian as the beast of White Hart Lane, but starting his own went down a storm with the fans. And yes, I can confirm that the 23-year-old can pull a freight train with his teeth, despite not knowing what one is.
Sean Morrison; Reading - #Cerealquest
This was only brought to my attention late on Monday night. With West Ham United and Stoke City proving to be a rather drab affair, Reading defender Morrison took to Twitter to find the greatest cereal available to superb effect. #Cerealquest kicked off almost instantaneously after a quick RT from Eurosport's Tom Adams.
The Royals youngster proceeded to answer questions as to what the best cereal available is, with myself asking where Fruit and Fibre ranks on his list. His response? “Its my oldmans fav! It will be assessed!”
It turned out to be a minor Twitter sensation, with #Cerealquest becoming the top trended topic on the social networking site. To be honest, I’m just delighted that the Reading startlet considered Fruit and Fibre. While the trend took off on Monday night, it had slowed down again on Tuesday morning. Nevertheless, the hashtag firmly took its place as my favourite, leapfrogging #decodingbantertips and #GHETTOJUICE as my number one.
Ashley Cole; Chelsea - #BUNCHOFT**TS
Way to make a Friday, Ashley. I remember this day fondly. It was a quiet afternoon and I was covering in FourFourTwo headquarters. Next thing I see the England left-back, at the time two caps away from his 100, labelled the Football Association a ‘bunch of t**ts’ after he was accused of lying in the recent John Terry case.
Tens of thousands of RT’s later, a couple of trending topics and an apology from Cole’s solicitor and all is supposedly OK, right? Wrong – the Chelsea star remains one cap away from his England ton, with The Times’ Tony Evans superbly quoting ‘Cole was 98 not out before striking his own wicket’.
The best thing about the tweet, however, wasn’t what Cole said, but rather how he said it. Granted, calling your employers a ‘bunch of tw*ts’ isn’t ideal, but by hashtagging in all caps came across as though the 31-year-old was screaming the offense at the top of lungs. Many still wonder whether he was so irritated at the verdict that he was forced to pull over to the side of the road as he was shaking with rage.
Ashley Cole; Chelsea (again) - #HatersCantBreakMe
This is a late addition to the list, seeing as it appeared on my timeline eight minutes after I uploaded and finished the original piece. On Friday evening, Cole took to Twitter to thank his fans for being in the position he is now.
However, the Chelsea left-back opted to fully utilise his inner hashtag and come out with a real beaut on Friday evening, insisting #HatersCantBreakMe. Now, last time I checked Cole wasn’t a Westcoast rapper hailing from the mean streets of Compton.
As many haters as you may have, and to be fair Ashley has a fair few, proclaiming that ‘haters can’t break me’ is a little cheesy and just down-right daft. With the amount of money you take home per week, ‘haters’ shouldn’t be able to break you in the first place, while it’s likely to see Cole become the butt of many a joke from now on.
Ryan Bertrand, Chelsea - #yourf**kingnuts
It didn’t attract as much attention as Cole’s aforementioned hashtag, but Bertrand’s was still hilarious nevertheless. As Ashley’s understudy, it was always the case that the spotlight wouldn’t be as bright on the young left-back's shoulders blatant grammatical failings.
The tweet emerged after the Blues youngster pulled out of the England squad as a result of being ill. Twitter picked up on this, along with numerous news outlets, that Bertrand had asked to be left out of the national team as a result of a sore throat.
As a smoker, I often wake up with an oesophagus rawer than a fresh piece of sand paper, but it’s never prevented me from playing a game of football. Bertrand made this abundantly clear in his tweet, proclaiming “Do you think a “sorethroat” could stop me being apart of a match for my club or country?” followed by the aforementioned tag of the hash variety.
To be honest Ryan, it was the incapability of differentiating between ‘your’ and ‘you’re’ that really p***ed me off. If you ever need help with it, just think back to Ross on Friends specifically explaining that “Y O U apostrophe R E means ‘you are’. Y O U R means ‘your’”.
Gareth Bale, Tottenham Hotspur - #mutedcelebration
Ah, this just really got my gripe. With Bale’s imminent return to Southampton for the first time since leaving the South Coast club for Tottenham Hotspur, it would understandably bring up emotions from his time with recently returning Premiership side as a youngster.
It’s basically destiny that any player who scores against their former club doesn’t celebrate. Ever. Dimitar Berbatov did it against Bayer Leverkusen. Robin van Persie was the same against Arsenal the other week.
But Bale...Bale took it upon himself to celebrate without actually celebrating. Without going absolutely bats**t crazy, and insinuating to his teammates not to celebrate, he still did that stupid heart symbol that he has become associated with. If that’s a #mutedcelebration, then, for the love of all that is great, just stop it.
Nile Ranger; Newcastle United - #GHETTOJUICE
If I was drinking one of my three or four coffee’s a day at the time of reading this, my laptop would’ve been coated in the black caffeinated liquid as a result of the hilarity of the tweet. It’s fair to say that Ranger’s footballing career hasn’t been coated in glory.
Assault, drunken antics and homophobic comments aside, his one goal in 28 games for Newcastle is hardly a record to scream from the rooftops. However, fearing his fall from the spotlight, and probably looking to cut back on the pennies, Ranger announced to the social world that he had ‘no drink in his house’.
Attached to the tweet was a picture of seven Calypso Jubbly’s on a plate in the oven, with the intent of defrosting said ice lollies for ‘drink’, or #GHETTOJUICE as he so aptly titled it. Here is a tip for you Nile; a 1L carton of Sainsbury’s basic orange juice is only 74p. If that doesn’t satisfy your thirst quenching quest, water from the tap would surely suffice, right?
Steven Fletcher; Sunderland - #headsgone
Following the relegation of Wolverhampton Wanderers, speculation was rife that Sunderland were to move for the Scotland international. However, rather than wait any official word from the club, Fletcher took to Twitter to announce he had handed in a transfer request.
Hardly the most respectful way to treat Wolves, eh Steven? Yet, you have to give the striker some credit – he at least explained why he wanted out of the club in the form of the hashtagged #headsgone.
It has since become an everlasting joke on Twitter as those with a sense of humour took to adding the quip every time anyone didn’t complete a mundane task for the day. ‘I didn’t walk the dog today #headsgone’, ‘Turned down a free chocolate bar #headsgone’ and ‘Sunderland are paying £14m for Fletcher #headsgone’.
Marvin Sordell; Bolton Wanders - #decodingbantertips
This one took me completely by surprise, but it can be argued it’s the best to emerge in recent months. The term ‘banter’ is one that disappoints me, as it usually means people are either A) bullying or B) being d*cks.
Yet, when footballers aren’t discussing a recent trip to Nando’s, the conversations regularly involve ‘banter’ between one another. However, Marvin gave the Twitter regular folk a brief insight into his social world by giving us a hint as to his chats on the social networking site.
You see, whenever Sordell includes ‘LOL’ or ‘Haha’ in a tweet, it means he’s just having a bit of banter, be it with fans, peers or himself. If only the hashtag had come before Cole and Bertrand released an “expletive ridden tweet” towards the FA, they may not have landed in as hotter water as they did ‘Haha LOL’.