A war of words has broken out among two sports journalists following a stereotypical joke about Liverpudlians.
Dan Levene, Chelsea FC writer for the Fulham Chronicle, was tweeting about the champion’s £50 million club record purchase of Fernando Torres from bitter rivals Liverpool.
Writing on the social networking site, Levene said: ‘Torres: “I’ve always wanted to play for one of the top clubs in Europe and now I am.” You see, Nando recognises our history.’
The comment provoked anger from Liverpool fans upset about the manner of Torres’ departure.
Shortly after Levene, going by the Twitter name BluesChronicle, tweeted: “Haha – I’m trending in Liverpool! Hope I locked the house before leaving home.”
The stereotypical joke, an outdated reference to crime in the city, promptly caused a stir and alerted the attention of Tony Barrett, the highly regarded Liverpool correspondent for The Times.
In short and sweet fashion, Barrett tweeted: “Knobhead.”
Levene promptly replied: “Incisive comment from The Times there.”
The exchange between the two continued with Barrett defending his initial two-syllable tweet, adding: “Succinct, apt and beyond dispute given your comment. I stand by what I said.
“And feel free to use your real name instead of hiding behind a pseudonym. Funny man deserves recognition.”
In a tit-for-tat exchange, Levene replied: “Name’s on the account – not hiding behind anything. Do they do sense of humour bypasses on the NHS up there, pal?”
Barrett then ended the conversation, tweeting: “Oh my God. You really are a comedian. See you Sunday.”
Liverpool travel to Stamford Bridge this Sunday with Torres expected to make his home debut for the champions in what is anticipated to be one of the season’s fiercest battles.