Wesley Sneijder to QPR - How a Twitter prank fooled the masses

Parody account BBC Sporf yesterday made the fleeting comment that the Dutch master had arrived in London for talks with Harry Redknapp. Since then it has fooled websites, news stations, newspapers, bookies, fans and even Harry himself!

Yesterday HITC ran a story on the case of Wesley Sneijder. The mercurial Dutchman has been made available for a free transfer by Inter Milan as they desperately seek to cut his £200k-a-week wage bill from the clubs books. After trying in vain to discuss a pay-cut with the midfield maestro the situation has turned unsavoury with gaffer Andrea Stramaccioni dropping the 28-year-old from the side until he either takes a pay-cut or moves on.

He has reportedly been offered to a variety of clubs and in the Premier League the likes of Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool and Tottenham have all been ‘approached’ about their interest in his acquisition. However it is that hefty wage that has scuppered any potential deal so it looks increasingly likely that he will not be on his way.

But wait. Hold the press as another Premier League club is reportedly in talks with the player; relegation strugglers QPR.

Harry Redknapp himself was quoted in today’s Sun newspaper as saying:

“I was asked by one agent if I wanted to sign Sneijder. Of course I do. However, he’s on about £200,000 a week and now he wants to join QPR?’’


At least it would be if it wasn’t all part of a brilliantly executed hoax on Twitter. The account name BBC Sporf ring any bells to you?

Essentially it is a spoof account that generally makes light of some of the bigger stories in sport and on this occasion they went a little April Fools on us with the sensational tale that Wesley Sneijder could be considering a move to QPR.

We know that the club has a fair bit of money in the coffers but surely nobody really believed this deal was possible. It appears that in fact some people did as not only has it made the Sun newspaper but apparently even Harry Redknapp believes it to be true!

Trending on Twitter worldwide yesterday and making the back page of the country’s most read red-top today. Not bad for a spoof account on Twitter.

They have taken great pride in their achievement.

image: © Patrick de Laive

FIFA World Cup 2018FIFA 2018 World Cup Russia - click here for all of our coverage...

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch