Matt Butler: From Dubai to Fury... An afternoon of tales from Twitter

Saturday's sport, Twitter

What can you learn from Twitter, aside from groan-inducing puns, libellous allegations and discovering which minor celebrity has managed to get their mitts on the latest BlackBerry? Quite a lot, if one Saturday's attempt to follow the day's sport is anything to go on.

Two days ago was an ideal time to ascertain how useful the application can be to keep tabs on sporting matters, as there were no fewer than seven Premier League games which kicked off in the broadcast no-go zone of three in the afternoon, plus a near full programme of Football League matches.

Of course, the disclaimer to this not-so-scientific study is that only one account was monitored (@mattbutler503, since you ask) and therefore any information gleaned – or missed – is based on one person's choice of users to follow.

And the first thing we learn is that the fabled pre-match anticipation begins early for players.

Not only that, it also appears that Jason Roberts (right), the Reading striker sidelined with a hip complaint, occupies some kind of utopian, early-1980s parallel universe.

His tweet from ten to nine in the morning: "Woke to Cyrille Regis goals being played, Dennis Brown on the radio and pot 'pon fire. Now three points for the boys." How the other half lives. Shame Reading lost 3-1.

More prosaic in his pre-match build-up was Robert Snodgrass, the Norwich forward: "Pub footballer or Premier League, nothing beats the feeling of waking up on game day." It probably was the best he felt all day, as his side lost 4-0 to Manchester United.

Of course, the story everyone was talking about on Saturday was Queen's Park Rangers' alleged alcohol-fuelled "stag party" antics in Dubai – and Twitter revealed there are few original thinkers when it comes to gags about Harry Redknapp's players getting excited at the manager's warning that there would be lots of boos before the match at his former club, Southampton.

QPR's official channels, on the other hand, were quick off the mark in reacting to the revelations, as the press officer tweeted, with ominous ellipsis, at around nine in the morning: "The club is aware of the article but the club's entire focus is on today's fixture with Southampton..."

Once the football actually started, there followed a relentless barrage of score and incident updates, but, such is the format of Twitter, there is always a gleaming nugget of randomness in the stream of cyber-consciousness.

On Saturday it was the turn of Tyson Fury, the heavyweight boxer, who revealed in 44 characters far more than was necessary at 3.15pm, as well as his disregard for apostrophe rules, when he tweeted: "Shout out to all my sexy lady's in da house." The mind boggles as to what he was up to.

But throughout the day QPR remained the only story in town, especially after they managed to post their third win of the season – and even more so when Redknapp let rip at "agents" spreading scurrilous rumours with regards to the Dubai booze-up story.

Newspaper hacks teasingly tweeted: "Never seen 'Arry so cross – read about it tomorrow." Pah. It was as if the age of instant information had passed them by. Oh.

Aside from score updates, embarrassing boxers and booze-hound gags – and that Rio Ferdinand is a bit of a statto regarding his team-mate Shinji Kagawa's hat-trick – Saturday's Twitter taught us something worth knowing: that you can express pathos in under 140 characters.

This from the local press photographers at the Kettering Town v AFC Totton match: "Tannoy announcement: 'Not sure the right person is going to get this, but a hearing aid has been found by the men's toilets.'"

Voices
Homeless Veterans charity auction: Cook with Angela Hartnett and Neil Borthwick at Merchants Tavern
charity appeal
Sport
Amir Khan is engaged in a broader battle than attempting to win a fight with Floyd Mayweather
boxing Exclusive: Amir Khan reveals plans to travel to Pakistan
Arts and Entertainment
Caroline Flack became the tenth winner of Strictly Come Dancing
tvReview: 'Absolutely phenomenal' Xtra Factor presenter wins Strictly Come Dancing final
Sport
Ched Evans in action for Sheffield United in 2012
footballRonnie Moore says 'he's served his time and the boy wants to play football'
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Diaries of Evelyn Waugh, Virginia Woolf and Noël Coward reveal how they coped with the December blues

Famous diaries: Christmas week in history

Noël Coward parties into the night, Alan Clark bemoans the cost of servants, Evelyn Waugh ponders his drinking…
From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

The great tradition of St Paul and Zola reached its nadir with a hungry worker's rant to Russell Brand, says DJ Taylor
A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore: A prodigal daughter has a breakthrough

A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore

The story was published earlier this month in 'Poor Souls' Light: Seven Curious Tales'
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef creates an Italian-inspired fish feast for Christmas Eve

Bill Granger's Christmas Eve fish feast

Bill's Italian friends introduced him to the Roman Catholic custom of a lavish fish supper on Christmas Eve. Here, he gives the tradition his own spin…
Liverpool vs Arsenal: Brendan Rodgers is fighting for his reputation

Rodgers fights for his reputation

Liverpool manager tries to stay on his feet despite waves of criticism
Amir Khan: 'The Taliban can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'

Amir Khan attacks the Taliban

'They can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'
Michael Calvin: Sepp Blatter is my man of the year in sport. Bring on 2015, quick

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Sepp Blatter is my man of the year in sport. Bring on 2015, quick
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses