Thursday, 21 April 2011

Why Michael Owen’s tweets are doing no favours for himself

On Tuesday night, I had my mind set on writing a small piece on the reasons why certain players are made captain's of their clubs. And whether they were given the armband for the right reasons. But something rather comical occurred on Tuesday night.

In fact it was Michael Owen who occurred.

Since Michael Owen has joined Twitter, he has provided me with great comedy. It’s a shame, as he doesn’t mean to be funny. But the manner in which he tweets and the content of them are simply golden comedy.

Owen has the habit of telling his followers about the Man United preparation prior to games and what the players are up to. This seems reasonable enough to be fair. But because he is Michael Owen and lets be honest, he isn’t the most respected player in some parts. People look at his tweets and mock him.

Here’s an example, ‘Shower, suited and booted, pre match meal, team meeting, coach to Wembley, Big K.Off. We be back on after the match hopefully in good mood.’ When Owen tweeted this, it was received with gloats from a variety of different fans. Some laughed at how excited Owen was to be on the bench. While others viewed him as a sad individual, who has nothing better to do with his time other then tweet about what his colleagues are up to.

Some of tweets Michael Owen comes up with are just magical. They are magical as there are simply so funny. After the Fulham game a few weeks ago, Owen tweeted, ‘Just got home. Another big win for us. I played 20 mins at the end but we played much better in the 1st half than in the 2nd.’ You kind of cant help but laugh at tweets like these.

It’s hilarious, simply for a number of reasons. Firstly, Michael Owen finally gets a game! Secondly, even he admits, United were poor in the second half. When he himself was introduced. It only suggests that his impact on the game was minimal. This kind of symbolises his decline. Owen at 23, would have never been on the bench. And he would never have got excited at playing 20 minutes. It shows how much things have changed. And this is what makes people laugh at Owen’s tweets. The mere change in mentality of the former England star.

But, his tweet about him scoring a crucial goal is absolutely priceless. Owen tweeted, ‘As I've already said, don't know where, don't know when, but there is an important goal to come from me this season - mark my words!!!’ Now, we all know, he will be lucky to even get a few minutes on the pitch in the run in, let alone an ‘important goal.’ The fact he has made only 8 league appearances clearly reinstates this. Perhaps, you should praise his positivity and enthusiasm. But tweets like that are asking people to ridicule him. Even without people ridiculing him, you sub- consciously laugh at him. You instantly think to yourself, hmm, does he even get a game for Man United these days?

Everyone knows that having a bit of an outburst on Twitter is a bad bad idea. It’s bad simply because on Twitter, and generally the internet, people are more likely to react in a vile manner.

Owen was angry with the poor reception he received at St. James’ Park and along with Man United’s disappointing draw. But his tweets represented a man who knows he is in decline and a man who knows the end is near.

Owen firstly tweeted, ‘From what most of you Newcastle fans are saying you should be pleased I left the club! If i had known that earlier I could have left sooner!’ Its clear, Owen is angry and disappointed. But reacting like that, is asking for people to mock and laugh at you. He doesn’t really help himself. As much as he has a right to defend himself, it also gives people especially those who dislike him even more ammunition to criticise him.

It also puts Owen in a rather depressing light. In my eyes, he hasn’t done much wrong to either Liverpool or Newcastle United. But the fans are bitter for various reasons. Perhaps, they have a right to be. But Owen should expect the fans to have some resentment towards him. After all, he has moved to a club which both Newcastle and Liverpool hate. Owen should be the bigger person and just ignore the perceptions of those fans. Its part and parcel of the game. Footballers earn an incredibly amount of money, they should expect people to seriously resent them.

A few moments later, Owen tweeted, ‘When I meet Newcastle or Liverpool fans they all respect what I've done for their clubs. In stadiums it changes, 1 boo and the rest follow.’ Again this clearly shows a man who is hurt by the way he is perceived at his former clubs. It seems he feels undervalued and unacknowledged. But again, saying this on Twitter doesn’t help his cause at all. @AintreeIron wittingly replied, ‘Well to ensure you get a fair reflection of public opinion I'll be sure and boo you next time I see you out and about.’ Owen doesn’t really help himself. As much as his intentions were to show his bemusement and annoyance towards the lack of respect he receives. On Twitter, people are going to take the piss out of him. But the sad thing is, it makes Michael Owen look like an even bigger joke.

No one can deny that Michael Owen’s twitter page has provided more fuel for Newcastle and Liverpool fans to mock him. After Stoke’s victory in the FA Cup semi final, Owen tweeted, ‘And Congrats to Stoke. Always admired Tony Pulis. They deserve their big day out. No team gets an easy game against them.’ @lukehewitt1985 tweeted in response, ‘fishing for a move Mike?’ Whatever he tweets, there will be someone laughing or mocking him. There are football fans who obviously have little respect for him.

Owen himself admitted, ‘you need thick skin to play this tweeting game.’ It’s not surprising in his case. Anything he tweets will be received with humour and irony. People just don’t take him seriously anymore.

Furthermore, Michael Owen’s status as a pantomime villain will only lead to him being continually bombarded with abuse on Twitter.

Perhaps Michael Owen really needs that thick skin.

Things you may like to read

Why Man United need to quickly find a replacement for Paul Scholes -

How Twitter has changed spectation of football for the fans -

Why Man United’s win over Blackpool in January wasn’t a defining moment in their season -

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