25 Most Ill-Advised Tweets from Footballers
From day one, putting footballers (a breed of people who aren’t know for their intellect or long tempers) on Twitter (a social networking site where you present your opinions to the masses and communicate with the general public) was always going to be problematic.
But who could have guessed that when the very first footballer joined Twitter it would kick off like a Millwall fan at Wembley?
This week has seen Norwich City defender, Ryan Bennett, face charges by the FA over threats he made to Arsenal fans after the previous weekend’s game between the two sides.
Bennett has since closed his Twitter account down.
So what are the other ill-advised tweets by footballers?
WARNING: From this point, some of the tweets featured will contain offensive language and all of the tweets featured will contain extreme stupidity.
Clive Brunskill/Getty Images
The summer of 2011 doesn't seem so long ago, but in terms of footballers on Twitter, it was light years away.
Back then, Joey Barton was "that player who went to prison, used to play for Man City. He's at Newcastle now I think." He wasn't "that idiot on Twitter," like he is now.
However, in June of that year he took the social networking world by storm by voicing his concerns about the way the Newcastle United management were running the club after they sold Kevin Nolan and suggested that him, Jose Enrique and Jonas Gutierrez were all about to be sold.
He would be punished internally, before being allowed to leave the club for free.
Little did we know, that this was only the tip of a very abusive iceberg for Monsieur Barton and the Twittersphere.
Pete Norton/Getty Images
In January 2011, Aldershot Town's Marvin Morgan faced disciplinary action after responding to fans who had booed him, by tweeting:
"Like to thank the fans who booed me off the pitch. Where's that going to get you! I hope you all die."
Needless to say, Aldershot didn't sell many shirts with "Morgan" printed on the back after that. In fact, they transfer listed him soon after that.
Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images
Arsenal goalkeeper and spellcheck's worst nightmare, Wojciech Szczesny found himself in trouble over a reply to teammmate Aaron Ramsey tweeting a picture of himself:
He later apologized for this tweet.
His howlers aren't limited to the penalty area.
Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images
"A cowardly coach always substitutes a player to try to divert attention from his own powerlessness."
However, Kaka's media manager later claimed responsibility for the offending tweet, claiming:
"From now on I will only comment on cooking recipes".
Here’s a recipe for you. Step 1, drop your client in hot water...
Mike Hewitt/Getty Images
UEFA aren't known for their roaring sense of humor, especially when it comes to match-fixing.
So it probably wasn't the best idea for Arsenal's Jack Wilshere to joke about betting on an Arsenal game, tweeting that teammate Emmanuel Frimpong to score first was "worth a cheeky £10".
If that wasn't bad enough, Wilshere followed that tweet, after Frimpong had hit the side-netting during the game, with:
"Frimmy nearly won me some money there"
Needless to say, UEFA didn't retweet it. In fact, they even issued him a warning.
At least he didn't injure his fingers typing it.
Clive Mason/Getty Images
Footballers aren't known for their fantastic punctuation skills, so perhaps former West Ham defender Danny Gabbidon can be forgiven for tweeting in 2009:
"Sorry you had to witness that last night West Ham fans need to start showing the dedication that you have & things might start to improve!x"
While that may read like Gabbidon thinks West Ham fans should start showing more dedication, he clarified that:
"Wow! i have caused a stir today havent i? My punctuation is awful please put a comma after fans and you will see the true message sorry x"
However, D-Gabbs didn't stay out of Twitter trouble for long, he was charged by the FA in 2011 with abusive tweets after a four-letter rant at West Ham fans (intended this time, not a punctuation mistake).
Ever thought that Twitter just isn't for you, Danny? Maybe stick to Bebo? (On that note, did you know Andy Carroll has a Bebo account from when he was 16, that he forgot the password to and can't delete?)
Alex Livesey/Getty Images
As we get further into the list, you'll soon find out that Ryan Babel is The Netherlands' answer to Joey Barton (to a question that no one wanted answering).
In January 2010 he didn't do much to get in Liverpool boss Rafael Benitez's good books (although, by the sounds of it, he wasn't a main protagonist in that book's narrative), by tweeting:
"Hey people, I've got some disappointing news - I'm not travelling to Stoke. The boss left me out of the squad. No explanation."
Then followed that up with:
"What happened after a first good season? Scoring 10 goals, being young talent of the year, and then second and this season don't play at all?"
And then followed that up with:
"Where did it go wrong??? You have people who support me and don't support me ..."
"And one day, you will see what I'm capable off, will it be at LFC or somewhere else ... I have faith."
We never really did see what he was capable of and, if we did, it wasn't at LFC—he was sold to Hoffenheim in 2011.
Phil Cole/Getty Images
Despite the fact that his then-manager Harry Redknapp often gets accused of tapping up players in the media, Darren Bent tried engineering a move away from Tottenham Hotspur through social media in 2009:
"Do I wanna go Hull City. No. Do I wanna go Stoke. No. Do I wanna go Sunderland. Yes. So stop ******* around Levy."
"Why can't anything be simple? It's so frustrating hanging around doing jack ****. Seriously getting ****** off right now. Sunderland are not the problem in the slightest."
He received an £80,000 fine by his club.
We can't help but wonder how frustrated he is now at Aston Villa, hanging around "doing jack ****” while Christian Benteke gets game time?
Ker Robertson/Getty Images
Former Chelsea, Brighton, Swansea and QPR player Leon Knight is an absolute nightmare on Twitter.
He was recently released by his club, Glentoran in Northern Ireland, over homophobic comments made on the social networking site.
He even had his account suspended in September because of his project "S*** Alert Pictures." Where he would use his Twitter to publish intimate photos of women sent in by their ex-boyfriends.
Knight makes Joey Barton look like an actual knight.
Gregory van der Wiel
Julian Finney/Getty Images
In October 2009, the now-Paris Saint Germain full-back ruled himself out of a friendly for his national side against Australia after suffering from a concussion. Or so he claimed. However, he angered The Netherlands coach Bert van Marwijk when he tweeted this picture:
Showing that he was fit enough to attend a Lil' Wayne concert.
Van Marwijk must prefer Young Buck.
Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images
Joey Barton's back! And this time he's borderline slandering former World Cup winner and his ex-Manchester City teammate, Dietmar Hamann, in a Twitter argument earlier this year:
Stu Forster/Getty Images
West Ham United's Carlton Cole was charged by the FA over improper conduct after tweeting in a manner deemed offensive during an England friendly against Ghana.
SPOILER ALERT: There might just be someone else with the last name "Cole" to feature in this list. Don't worry Andy and Joe, it's not you.
Bryn Lennon/Getty Images
Let's keep this one short and sweet (not a pun). Liverpool's Jonjo Shelvey deleted his Twitter account in March 2011, after a picture of a penis was posted on there.
Shelvey tweeted after the incident:
"Apologies for the picture – one of my mates messing around with my phone! Sorry!"
Don't worry, no screenshots of the offending tweet in this slide.
Alex Livesey/Getty Images
Paul Thomas/Getty Images
Emmanuel Frimpong of Arsenal and whatever club Arsenal are loaning him out to this week was fined £6,000 and warned about conduct by the FA after he replied to a Tottenham Hotspur fan who had tweeted him: "I prayed you break your arms and legs," with the response: "Scum Yid."
Proving two wrongs don't make a right. Especially when the second wrong has anti-Semitic connotations.
Mark Thompson/Getty Images
It isn't always wise to accuse referees of being biased.
So when Ryan Babel tweeted this picture:
Showing English referee Howard Webb in a Manchester United kit, was it any wonder he was fined £10,000?
Alex Livesey/Getty Images
Following his one-man attempt to reignite the Falklands War, by attacking as many Argentinians as he could on the last day of the 2011/12 season. Barton was criticized by the pundits on Match Of The Day, Alan Shearer, Alan Hansen and Gary Lineker.
Never one to take criticism well, Barton's twitter account jumped into life:
Barton then added:
"I'd take it off Hansen and @GaryLineker but not from that bell, same fella that stamped on Neil Lennon ...".
"Selfish, boring man him. He can do one..."
"My favourite memory of him though is when he dropped his spuds when Keano put it on him. Goodnight Al, sleep well matey..."
However when Gary Lineker accused Barton's attack on Shearer as an attempt to deflect attention from his behavior, Barton said:
"No deflections here mate. Think the fact about 100m people seen it will see to that. Just don't like how he gets personal …"
When Lineker responded, to ask Barton whether he was "still kicking out" and still "misunderstood," Barton lost it again and got personal:
"Do u wanna go there publicly "Mr Squeaky Clean,"
Then Barton threatened to expose "skeletons" in Lineker's "vast closet".
" mind ur manners Squeaky..."
"now back under your stone you odious little toad..."
Think that's the last we've heard of Joey Barton in this list?
Bob Levey/Getty Images
USA International Brian Ching was fined $500 for implying the referee was a cheat.
Well, he didn't so much imply it, he more stated it twice in 140 characters:
Hong Wu/Getty Images
When you're meant to be a professional footballer in 2013, you're expected not to tweet like you were on the terraces in the 1970s. Manchester United's Federico Macheda was fined £15,000 for this homophobic tweet, while on loan at QPR in 2012:
Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images
Earlier this month, after Joey Barton had called Neymar overrated, (Yes, Joey Barton is honestly out there, on the Internet, calling Neymar overrated) Neymar's countryman, Thiago Silva, defended him and had a pop at Barton himself. Barton responded the only way he knew how.
In a childish manner on social networking sites:
Surprisingly, Barton escaped punishment from the French Football Federation.
Alex Livesey/Getty Images
Before Joey Barton was committing borderline slander of ex-pros on Twitter, there was Liverpool's Glen Johnson.
Glen had took exception in 2011 in an article when Merson criticized him. So that's Paul "average at the best of times" Merson judging Glen "average at the best of times" Johnson.
Koichi Kamoshida/Getty Images
Chinese international goalkeeper Wang Dalei found himself suspended from the national team after tweeting, following a 3-0 defeat to Japan:
"It would be flattery to call you fans. You're just a bunch of dogs."
We don't think the fans were actually throwing stones into a well that someone had fallen in, but we cannot say for sure.
Bradley Orr and Paddy Kenny
Bryn Lennon & Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images
When at QPR, Bradley Orr and Paddy Kenny forced their then-manager Neil Warnock to impose a Twitter ban for his players (that unfortunately didn't last long enough to the point when Joey Barton joined the club) after an incident in the FA Cup in January 2011.
QPR's Jamie Mackie had broken his leg whilst playing Blackburn Rovers, when El Hadj Diouf allegedly abused Mackie and told him, while he was lying on the pitch injured, "**** you and **** your leg".
This led defender Bradley Orr to tweet:
"Never come across a more repulsive human being than E H Diouf! The things he was saying were disgusting! The lad has just broken his leg! You horrible disgusting man E H Diouf! Your time will come!"
Which, while it implied a veiled threat, could be considered an understandable, angry tweet in the heat of the moment. However, 'keeper (as in goalkeeper, not as in a man that women should keep hold of if they were in a relationship), Paddy Kenny went one better and said:
"So gutted for the boy Mackie, football can be horrible sometimes, and that **** diouf will get it one day, what goes around comes around."
Clive Rose/Getty Images
When you're an England player, it probably isn't best to be offensive about the English Football Association. Especially when it's about a racism case and you turn the offensive statement about the FA into a hashtag.
What did Ashley Cole think the best result of tweeting that was? That it would start trending?
Cole was fined a #BUNCHOFPOUNDCOINS for the tweet. Precisely 90,000 of them, in fact.
The Swansea Ball Boy
image via Sky Sports 1
The football world was disgusted with Chelsea's Eden Hazard when he was sent off for kicking a ball boy at Swansea City this season. The ball boy lay on the ball after it went out of play and Hazard tried kicking the ball from underneath him, seemingly injuring the child in the process.
However as events transpired, it turned out the ball boy was actually a 17-year-old who had tweeted this prior to the game
The official Chelsea FC account didn't cover itself in glory, by tweeting of "the king of all ball boys."
It could have been worse, Ashley Cole could have been doing the club's official tweets.