Well, they either need to stop using twitter or be a bit more sensible about how they use it! The latest player to be caught out saying something he shouldn’t have done is, perhaps unsurprisingly, Wayne Rooney.
Some players have fabulous twitter accounts that are followed by thousands of people and provide great entertainment and enjoyment and a little insight into their lives. Rio Ferdinand, Michael Owen and Robbie Savage spring to mind. Perhaps they have the required number of brain cells to avoid getting themselves in hot water.
It isn’t a difficult thing to understand that if you are a high profile professional footballer, your every word on twitter will be assessed and explored with a fine toothed comb by all aspects of the media, particularly the tabloid press. Despite that, some players just don’t seem to get it.
Carlton Cole, the West Ham striker, was recently charged with improper conduct by the FA after he posted what he thought was an amusing piece about the need for immigration officials to be on stndby during the international match between England and Ghana. It may have been a slightly amusing comment to friends in the pub, but not by a star footballer to thousands of members of the public for goodness sake!
Earlier in the season there was the infamous case where Liverpool’s Ryan Babel was so incensed by the display of referee Howard Webb in their 1-0 defeat at Manchester United that he posted a mocked up picture of the referee in a Manchester United shirt. Again, an amusing thing between friends, but on twitter? He was rightly fined £10,000.
Now we come to Wayne Rooney. One of his 570,000 followers posted an abusive tweet on his site. Rooney responded by suggesting a meeting at the training ground. He posted, “I’ll put u asleep within 10 seconds”
He went on to tweet, “hope u turn up if u don’t gonna tell everyone ur scared u little nit. I’ll be waiting.”
Presumably to cover his tracks when he realised that he had said something silly, Rooney added, “Haha bit of banter”.
It may have been banter, but it doesn’t really look like it does it? What beggars belief is that Rooney knows he has to be on his best behaviour after he was recently banned for two matches by the FA for swearing into a TV camera after scoring at West Ham.
A spokesman for Rooney has issued a statement to try to draw a line under the incident.
“As is made clear in the tweets, this whole exchange is banter. There is no suggestion, nor is there any intention of a suggestion, of a real fight.”
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger admitted that clubs have got to look at the use of networking sites like twitter by players.
“At the moment we allow it. We are thinking about how to use it the best way. It can be very positive because it can be a good communication for the players with the fans which doesn’t exist anymore. It can as well have negative repercussions for the clubs if it is not well used so we are thinking about it. We will see what kind of direction we will go.”
It isn’t a major issue in the general scheme of things, but it really does make you wonder about what some of these players are thinking when they do this sort of thing. I guess that is the problem. They are just not thinking at all.
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Rooney might have been having some banter, but knowing him that follower on twitter must have said something real “good” to catch Wazza like that.