BEFORE this weekend, the most contentious post on Hull City striker Jozy Altidore’s Twitter feed was his claim that Olly Murs would win X Factor. (I mean, come on Jozy, surely Stacey’s going to win.)
Then came a post which annoyed Hull manager Phil Brown so much that the American striker is going to be fined for it.
Altidore was dropped from the squad for yesterday’s match against Portsmouth after reporting late at the KC Stadium. He then annoyed Brown further by relaying this on Twitter.
He’s not the first footballer to fall foul of the Twitter curse (Darren Bent, anyone?) and he won’t be the last. But Altidore has perhaps been a little unfortunate, in that his offending post appears to have been put up with good intentions.
The post was quickly removed from his Twitter feed. But from what I’ve been able to gather from various reports, Altidore was apologising to Hull’s fans when he revealed the reasons for his being dropped. No matter, as far as Brown was concerned: The information should have stayed in house.
Altidore could be forgiven for wondering if Twitter is worth all the hassle. (Then again, I sometimes feel the same about this blog. Yes, it’s helped get me some extra work as a freelance, and I’ve had some very kind feedback on what I’ve written. But I also seem to have made a lot of enemies in Barnsley.)
In a blog written for the New York Times’ website in April, Altidore confessed that he had been through a few teething troubles with Twitter.
“For a while, I was having problems getting it to work, but now it’s up and running and I’m adding people I want to follow,” he wrote at the time.
“And I promise to update people following me all the time. Really. Honest!”
No, it’s OK. I believe you.
Altidore actually comes across on Twitter as a good-natured, enthusiastic, down-to-earth chap, who is as amused and frustrated by everyday life as the rest of us. Last Monday’s 2-0 defeat at Fulham left him pretty grumpy, and things soon got worse for him:
To make tonight even worse i lost my car keys! *#+* *#$&%**!!
That post came the day after this very bemused observation:
About to get on the coach to london. I hope im seeing things if not then on the way to training i saw and 80 woman naked at the gas station?
Really? Anyway, that came on the same day as this:
Trying to educate hesselink on how to use twitter i think he might get one….
Probably best to hang fire on that one. On Thursday, he wrote this:
I want to win so bad this weekend the supporters are always behind us its amazing!
And on Saturday morning, this:
Good morning everyone! Hull City fans bring the noise today we are going to need your help. Big day for us.
Now I wouldn’t claim you could ever completely know someone purely by reading their Twitter feed. But Altidore seems to me to be a guy who cares about Hull, and who wants them to do well. As things turned out, he couldn’t do anything to help them yesterday. Maybe he would have brightened up a truly appalling game.
Last night’s final match: Hull 0 Portsmouth 0
Commentator: John Roder
Brevity is the soul of Twitter. Posts have a limit of 140 characters. Hull’s match with Portsmouth was so short of incident that it could be summed up in one Tweet and still leave enough room for a shopping list. So here goes:
hull 0 pompey 0 worst game in PL history? pompey on top couldn’t score, hull hopeless, booed off. Bacon celery light bulbs kitchen roll. LOL
That’s exactly 140 characters (including spaces), if you want to count them. It’s a breeze, this Twitter lark, isn’t it? Wonder if Stephen Fry’s posted a verdict on Hull v Portsmouth…
1. Portsmouth: 3 (GD: 1. 2L: 0.)
2. Wigan: 3 (GD: 0. 2L: 1.)
3. Gubba: 2 (GD: 2. 2L: 1.)
4. West Ham: 2 (GD: 1. 2L: 1.)
5. Everton: 2 (GD: 1. 2L: 0.)
6. Hull: 2 (GD: 0. 2L: 4.)
7=. Stoke: 2 (GD: 0. 2L: 1.)
7=. Wolves: 2 (GD: 0. 2L: 1.)
9. Blackburn: 1 (GD: 1. 2L: 0.)
10=. Bolton: 1 (GD: 0. 2L: 2.)
10=. Birmingham: 1 (GD: 0. 2L: 2.)
12. Fulham: 1 (GD: 0. 2L: 1.)
13. Sunderland: 0 (GD: 0. 2L: 3.)
14. Burnley: 0 (GD: 0. 2L: 2.)
15=. Arsenal: 0 (GD: 0. 2L: 1.)
15=. Chelsea: 0 (GD: 0. 2L: 1.)
17=. Aston Villa: 0 (GD: 0. 2L: 0.)
17=. Liverpool: 0 (GD: 0. 2L: 0.)
17=. Manchester City: 0 (GD: 0. 2L: 0.)
17=. Manchester United: 0 (GD: 0. 2L: 0.)
17=. Tottenham: 0 (GD: 0. 2L: 0.)
GD = Gubba difference
2L = On second last (Last night’s penultimate match was: Burnley 1 Wigan 3.)
(NB. Teams will receive one point for every time they appear last on MOTD. Appearances on MOTD2 are not included. Teams level on points will be separated by Gubba difference – the number of times a team is on last with Tony Gubba commentating. Teams still level will then be separated by the number of times they appear second last on MOTD.)