Two weeks ago I wrote a piece about the value of social media when you are forced to miss a match. I think we all know that as a teacher-librarian I love to read, but I get book hangovers. You know, the feeling when you were so invested in the book you were reading that you sit in a sort of limbo trying to figure out what you should read next before ultimately picking up your favorite for the 15th time to comfort you until you’re ready to move on. In the meantime, I find myself mindlessly scrolling through Instagram and Twitter.
We all know the importance I’ve placed on following team feeds as well as individual feeds that live tweet the action. Everyone follows their favorite celebrities. Until recently I was staunchly against following celebrities and sticking only to people I know in real life, news/sports feeds, and Chrissy Teigen. Yes, I realize Chrissy Teigen is a celebrity, but she’s worth the follow any day of the week.
When I fell in love from the resale seats, I couldn’t learn about the players fast enough. I think it’s pretty clear by now that I enjoy the social aspect of soccer and page after page of player statistics wasn’t enough. I needed to really know these players. I started following some of my favorites on Twitter and Instagram and haven’t been disappointed. I wish I could link to Instastories because I feel like you really get to know people through their stories. They tend to be more candid and so much less planned than the carefully curated content too many people share to their feeds. Here are just a few of the fun things you’re missing if you’re not following players beyond the team pages:
Are you going to see amazing soccer content here? Absolutely! You’ll see her 100 USWNT goals celebration, professional shots of her in action, promotional material and so much more. You’ll also see her tagged in photos with the mother of dragons, no big deal. Or you’ll see her casually hanging out with Taylor Swift in Instastories. The girl is a fan favorite, not just for soccer fans. In choosing which Instagram post to embed, I felt that I’d be remiss if I didn’t share the 10-year challenge one, so here you are.
Dom Dwyer and Sydney Leroux Dwyer
Yes, I paired them in this. They are both funny in their own right and share insights regularly about training, locker room shenanigans, and most of all, their hilarious son, Cassius. If you didn’t know, Cassius also has his own Instagram worth following. While Dom’s flashy smile, laugh, and accent are always fun to watch, Sydney is one of my favorites. She’s a clapback queen that is here to support women, period. Her tweets not only bring social awareness to how women athletes are treated but she isn’t afraid to speak her mind about the little things in life. Not to mention the fact that they seem to frequent some of the greatest gems that Central Florida has to offer. I typically scroll through Instagram sans sound, but always turn it on for these three!
Just keeping my confidence high. pic.twitter.com/JaryksKGdv— Sydney Leroux Dwyer (@sydneyleroux) April 18, 2019
Oh captain, my captain! Following Nani has been fun as we get to see him share inspiring thoughts post-match, share experiences with his son, and discover some of the fun Orlando has to offer. He’s taken a stand against racism, shared throwbacks from one of his first soccer teams in Portugal, and about his YouTube content. He’s only getting started as a Lion and his content will only get more exciting.
Marta is a woman that needs no introduction. She shares stunning pictures of herself with friends and family, a fun campaign she did for the Brazilian release of The Umbrella Academy on Netflix, her accomplishments, and Zoe and Zeca — two of the most precious and lavish pups, who also happen to have their own Instagram. I’m one of those boring monolinguals, but the translation features on both Twitter and Instagram do a pretty good job.
Ruan has been such a happy addition to Orlando City, not just on the pitch with his ridiculous speed but with his genuine excitement. He is so evidently excited to be playing here for us and wants us to know it. His Instagram posts are hopeful and encouraging, and his Instatories showcase him taking classes to learn English. I can’t wait to see what else is in store for him.
OK, I realize he’s not a player, but Ali Krieger’s brother is one of my new favorites to follow. You might think you’re Ali’s number one fan, but I assure you it’s Kyle. He’s funny, he posts candidly, he’s chronicling his attempt to adopt a precious dog, and he is not here for anyone not playing his sister. When she was finally called up and then didn’t see the pitch, he had a message for Jill Ellis.
- Danny Acosta — Good for Instastories of him dancing both in the locker room and on the pitch.
- Uri Rosell — Good for off pitch hangouts with teammates and places to be in Orlando.
- Chris Mueller — Good for motivational quotes.
- Dillon Powers — Good for plant-based recipes, motivation, and meditation advice.
- Santiago Pantino — Good for excitement over his professional career and — I’m not even kidding — getting his toenails clipped. I guess that would be the candid content of which I wrote about earlier.
These are just some of my favorites. Who do you follow and why?