Tottenham duo’s Twitter trouble
Following Chelsea’s Champions League triumph against Bayern Munich, players have come out in support of their achievement. Amongst these are two Tottenham Hotspur players, Steven Pienaar and Louis Saha.
Chelsea’s success comes to the detriment of Tottenham who, having been pipped to third spot by Arsenal, miss out on Champions League football next season.
Saha took to Twitter to say, “No CL for Tottenham but FairPlay to Chelsea. Great victory great final for them [sic]”, while teammate Peinaar simply tweeted, “Well done Chelsea”. It is not the first time that professional footballers have come under scrutiny as a result of their use of the social media site.
However, in an age where punditry and footballer interviews are frequently choked by a restriction on what they are and what they are not allowed to say, the connection between fans and players that Twitter provides is a welcome to relief to such constraints.
It has been said before, but if this is the reaction that players receive for expressing a sincere sentiment, then it is only a matter of time until the age of a staleness between footballers and their fans is ushered back in.
It is through Twitter that some of football’s most commendable highlights have occurred this season; not least the overwhelming support of Fabrice Muamba following his cardiac arrest. Abusive comments will only hinder its use.
This is not the only issue with the reaction to their comments. In a sporting environment, it is refreshing to see that these players can see past their own motives. Fans who fail to do this, and take objection to such sportsmanlike gestures, undermine their own support of the game.
Professionals congratulating fellow professionals demonstrates loyalty to their sport, more than it does betrayal of their club.
Tottenham players were not the only ones to feel the wrath of their fans for being disloyal. Arsenal legend Ian Wright expressed his belief that Ashley Cole was vindicated for his move to London rivals Chelsea from Arsenal – a move for which he is still ridiculed. Wright tweeted, “Ashley Cole. Laughing last. To you all you mugs who caned him! He made the right decision! Swallow and move on.”
In a season that has seen Arsenal exports Samir Nasri and Gaël Clichy lift the Premier League trophy and now Ashley Cole manage a cup double, including the much coveted Champions League, the approval of such a transfer struck a sour note with certain Arsenal fans.
Wright apologised for the way he worded his point, stating that he regretted calling such fans “mugs”.