Conor McGregor Tops 2017 Twitter Mentions Ahead of Cristiano Ronaldo, Neymar

Christopher SimpsonFeatured ColumnistDecember 5, 2017

LAS VEGAS, NV - AUGUST 25:  (L-R) Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Conor McGregor pose for pictures during a news conference after Mayweather's 10th-round TKO victory in their super welterweight boxing match on August 26, 2017 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Getty Images

Conor McGregor is the most mentioned sports star on Twitter in 2017 ahead of the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo and Neymar. 

The top 10 is dominated by players and managers from the world of football, with McGregor and Floyd Mayweather Jr. the only two from other sports.

The Mirror's Thomas Bristow shared the list:

  1. Conor McGregor
  2. Paul Pogba
  3. Romelu Lukaku
  4. Jose Mourinho
  5. Floyd Mayweather
  6. Wayne Rooney
  7. Neymar
  8. Cristiano Ronaldo
  9. Philippe Coutinho
  10. Arsene Wenger

                              

It has been a big year for each of the stars involved, so it's little surprise to see them make up the numbers.

UFC lightweight champion McGregor crossed over to boxing to take on Mayweather in one of the most hyped sporting events in recent memory, and it drew a significant audience, per Boxing Insider:

On top of that, McGregor has repeatedly courted controversy over the year, including comments made in the build-up to the Mayweather fight and an altercation with a referee at a Dublin MMA event last month.

He's also popular on social media with almost seven million followers on Twitter, and a recent tweet featuring a cartoon of him as Tony Montana from Scarface attracted plenty of attention:

It is perhaps something of a surprise to see Ronaldo so far down the list after he helped Real Madrid win the double earlier in the year as well as being named as the Best FIFA Men's Player in the world for 2017.

The superstar has dominated Instagram, though:

As for Neymar, his €222 million move from Barcelona to Paris Saint-Germain in the summer made him the most expensive player of all time.

That Pogba, Lukaku and Mourinho complete the top four is perhaps a testament to the power of Manchester United on social media.

The club have become a powerhouse across major social platforms under executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward, per James Robson of the Manchester Evening News:

As a result, it is perhaps not too surprising their stars attract a great deal of attention on Twitter and Pogba's development into their most important player puts him at the top of the pile.

One notable absentee from the world of football is Lionel Messi.

The forward has netted 48 goals for Barcelona in 2017, but aside from his heroics for Argentina to rescue their World Cup qualification bid, it has perhaps been a quiet year by his incredible standards, given his only silverware is the Copa del Rey.

Messi is likely to earn plenty more mentions on Thursday when the winner of this year's Ballon d'Or is revealed, but Ronaldo is the most likely victor after his role in Real's La Liga and UEFA Champions League exploits.