I have just started following the football Instagram account of Bleacher Report, a website that focuses on sports and sports culture. Week in, week out, B/R Football churns banter and sarcasm and takes a rotation in lionising football stars. All this, interestingly, is distilled through social media and consumed by fans of the game. Football banter has long since embedded itself in the culture, which is why Man United in Pidgin is largely relevant to the Nigerians that support the English football club.
That As Roma twitter handle. I have a feeling it’s an English man or a naija man that’s operating it.
The football craze and sarcasm is lit
— il Padrino (@Sodjee) April 14, 2018
But have you checked out the AS Roma account? The Italian club runs different languages on Twitter – it’s Italian version is ferociously Italian – but the English outlet dispatches quick banter and humour while taking up a resonating identity that is canonically Nigerian. It’s in the lingo and love for jollof rice. The last World Cup in Russia saw the account rooting for the Super Eagles all the way, celebrating the team’s victories and reminding the world how cool our Nike-designed jersey is.
For this, Nigerians all over the world have taken to following the account and rating it as the best football account on Twitter. CNN and other digital football sites have lauded its genius and creativity, and last week, Blinkfare Analytics reported that AS Roma English had the highest average engagement per post of all Serie A teams on Twitter, for which the account humorously responded:
Roma Twitter stays winning!
This incredible achievement wouldn’t have been possible without #ASRoma fans globally, Naija Twitter, Anthony, Harry the Evertonian, Turkish voters, Riise’s emoji, Chicken Inn FC, Bayer 04, a chipmunk, Jollof, Bulawayo Chiefs, Bologna admin & the 👑 https://t.co/guxU3YHUEQ
— AS Roma English (@ASRomaEN) October 5, 2018
Currently, the international break has sent footballers to represent their countries in friendlies and in the UEFA Nations League. For Nigeria in the AFCON qualification matches, the Super Eagles trashed Libya in a 4-0 victory wherein Odion Ighalo scored a hat-trick. Unsurprisingly, this is AS Roma English acknowledging Nigeria’s victory:
#ASRoma went green this week and there were hat-tricks all round! 🇮🇹 🇳🇬 🏴
— AS Roma English (@ASRomaEN) October 13, 2018
And if you still have a sliver of doubt about the nationality of the account handler, this is all the convincing you need:
True talk no lie. 💰💰
👀 cc. AS Roma HR department https://t.co/sN1skYjEh5
— AS Roma English (@ASRomaEN) October 12, 2018