Which London Football Teams Are Top Of The Twitter League?

M@
By M@ Last edited 93 months ago
Which London Football Teams Are Top Of The Twitter League?

footballstadium.jpg
Name that ground.

With most league football already under way and the Premier League starting this weekend, we thought this would be an apposite moment to take a look at which London clubs are most successful. But, being a bunch of nerds, we're not interested in striking prowess, club revenues or number of titles. We decided to take a measure of which teams have the biggest Twitter following. (Note: this is not intended as a 'definitive' list, but as an evolving article that will be shaped by reader feedback.)

(Updated: Last update 2.30pm, 12 August 2010.)

And here are the results for all London's clubs in the top four leagues:

Arsenal: 243,179
  • Chelsea: 91,229
  • Tottenham Hotspur: 18,196
  • West Ham United: 8324
  • Fulham FC: 6714
  • Crystal Palace: 5434
  • Queen's Park Rangers: 4037
  • Charlton Athletic: 2364
  • Millwall: 1077
  • Leyton Orient: 789
  • Brentford FC: 644
  • Dagenham and Redbridge: 467
  • Barnet: 344
  • So what do these numbers mean? The figures are based on the total number of followers for the five most-followed Twitter accounts for each team (where we can find that many). So, for example, Arsenal have 181,907 (@ArsenalDotCom) + 28,076 (@arsenal) + 12,887 (@ArsenalMania) + 8,748 (@BBCArsenal) + 5,875 (@ArsenalFans) = 237,493. Obviously, there will be a large overlap between feeds, with many individuals following more than one account for their favourite team. However, this is true for all of the clubs, so while the absolute number may not mean much, the relative positions may be insightful.

    Some might argue that it's no surprise that Arsenal top the league. This north London team has one of the larger fan bases from the middle/professional classes, who are more likely to use Twitter. The only team to punch above their real-world league position are First Division Charlton, who weigh in above Championship club Millwall. Again, not a surprise given that Charlton were a Premier League club a few seasons ago, and Millwall were promoted last season.

    Perhaps the most curious aspect is the tiny number of people who follow the smaller clubs. Lowly Barnet claim just 344 followers, a number that will be even smaller when you deduplicate the users who follow the pair of feeds making up this total.

    We recognise that the figures presented in this post are contestable. There are other ways one could measure Twitter followings. For example, we could take just the most popular Twitter feed for each club. Or we could include the long tails of smaller feeds relating to a club. Or we could include personal feeds from players. In addition, we may well have missed big feeds if they have a non-obvious name. So we'd like to regard this table as a starting point, and welcome your feedback on how to beef it up. Football is a team game after all. We'll publish the table again at the end of the season to see how things have changed.

    Here are the feeds in full, and we've also attached a spreadsheet listing out all the feeds alongside average attendances, in case that's of interest. See if your favourites feeds are listed.

    Arsenal

    181,907 (@ArsenalDotCom) 28,076 (@arsenal) 12,887 (@ArsenalMania) 11,561 (@Arseblog) 8,748 (@BBCArsenal)

    Chelsea

    59,960 (@stamfordthelion) 27,016 (@CFCNews) 1,899 (@ChelseaFans) 1,238 (@Chelseabuzztap) 1,116 (@_ChelseaFC_)

    Tottenham Hotspur

    7,682 (@thfc) 3,842 (@SpursOnSide) 2,531 (@Spurs_headlines) 2,273 (@spurs_updates) 1,868 (@SpursShow)

    West Ham

    3,463 @Westhamfootball, 1,663 (@WHUFC_headlines) 1,579 (@WesthamBuzztap) 840 (@Hamroo) 779 (@WestHam_Updates)

    Fulham

    5,038 (@FulhamFC) 588 (@Fulhambuzztap) 458 (Fulham_MAD) 337 (Fulham_Updates) 293 (@FulhamFCNews)

    Crystal Palace

    2,527 (@Official_CPFC) 1,144 (@cpfcdotorg) 654 (@Crystal_Palace) 622 (@Holmesdale) 487 (@cpfc)

    QPR

    1,234 (@QPRORG) 792 (@VitalQPR) 787 (@BBCQPR) 657 (@QPR_news) 564 (@QPRReport)

    Charlton Athletic

    1,656 (@CAFCOfficial) 286 (@Charlton_News) 237 (@CharltonNews) 129 (@OfficialAddicks) 56 (@Addickfans)

    Millwall

    547 (@MillwallFCNews) 344 (@MillwallUpdate) 74 (@VitalMillwall) 59 (@Millwall_fc_) 53 (@Millwallfans)

    Leyton Orient

    635 (@LeytonOrientFC) 129 (@Leyton_Orient) 25 (@OrientFans)

    Brentford

    540 (@BrentfordFC) 76 (@VitalBrentford) 28 (@BrentfordFans)

    Dagenham and Redbridge

    394 (@9men) 69 (@dagandred)

    Barnet

    221 (@BarnetFC_News) 123 (@barnetfc)

    Football twitter (3).xls

    Last Updated 10 August 2010

    elsie_em

    I know you didn't suggest this was an exhaustive list, but you've missed the two biggest accounts that I know of for Crystal Palace – @official_cpfc (the offical club account) has 2,526 followers and @cpfcdotorg (the biggest fan account that I know of) has 1,142. Replace the two smallest accounts for Crystal Palace with those two and we rise into sixth place, just below West Ham. Just saying!

    elsie_em

    Oops, I got overexcited and posted that before I read to the bottom and saw that you're asking for feedback. Um, that was mine.

    freddyfreddy

    In my list of most poorly researched articles this year, this ranks quite highly.

    A simple search for West Ham (or WestHam) on twitter brings up @WestHamProcess which has 710 followers and is a West Ham blogger.

    Clearly more than the sun west ham twitter account.

    The commenter above, highlights my point quite nicely - thank you.

    But all in all, congratulations for making our list.

    Harry Holmesdale

    Another addition for Palace

    http://twitter.com/holmesdale - 622 users

    andy_wilkes

    Hey maybe The Goons can put this first place in their dusty trophy cabinet at the new toilet bowl along with 3rd place and the Emirates Draw Trophy...

    DeanN

    The Goons can put this first place in their dusty trophy cabinet at the new toilet bowl along with 3rd place and the Emirates Draw Trophy...

    Honk!

    Good to see the mighty Palace ranking so well -- by some way the highest-ranked non-Prem team.

    Oh, and that's Millwall's nasty home in the main pic, the "New" Den (plonked down in south Bermondsey just 17 years ago but already looking decades past its prime).

    Adam

    Methodology was just using a twitter search for the keyword "arsenal" right?

    You missed out arseblog which has 11.000+ followers.

    Adam

    I know this is minor, but it still winds me up: the team is "Tottenham Hotspur" not "Tottenham Hotspurs."