Who should you be following on Twitter?

Twitter has become the first port of call for sports fans
Twitter has become the first port of call for sports fans

The Twitter explosion has spawned a host of minor social media celebrities who revel in apparent popularity - but that does not necessarily make them worth following.

While the UK social media hawks were a little quicker to embrace Twitter than some of us in Ireland, the site is now firmly established as the platform where big sports stories break before they reach the mainstream media.

Top football clubs and players announce their breaking stories on Twitter first these days, with those who present themselves as 'football insiders' attracting huge followers to their news feeds by claiming to offer the inside track on transfer stories and gossip in the game.

Dipping your toe in the Twitter minefield is akin to entering a confused war zone where your friends and enemies are wearing the same colours, so thought we'd give you a quick guide on who you should be following.

Let's start with a blatant plug for our own Sunday World sport newsfeed, which should be your first port of call for breaking sports news on a daily basis. Okay, we are biased, but give us a try@SWorldSport

Plenty of footballers have had a try at embracing Twitter, yet Ipswich winger Stephen Hunt is one of the most interesting from the Irish soccer fraternity. @stephenhunt1010

Sunday World columnist John Aldridge is a huge hit on Twitter, with his 171,000 follower, who enjoy regular interaction with the former Liverpool and Republic of Ireland goal scoring great. @Realaldo474

Paddy Power's Twitter account can always be relied upon for comedy tweets that tend pop up the moment a sporting event ends. They clearly have a little too much time on their hands at the 'Power Tower' in Tallaght@paddypower

Sunday Independent sports writer Dion Fanning is always on hand to offer his views on the big talking points in sport, as well as directing you to articles that are well worth a read. @dionfanning

Anyone who isn't following Sunday World columnist and Irish sporting legend Paul McGrath is missing the point of Twitter! The big man is as charming on his social media feed as he is in the flesh. @Paulmcgrath5 

Never short of an opinion and a regular tweeter, Irish Daily Star chief sports writer Kieran Cunningham is well worth following. @KCsixtyseven

Sunday World writer Sean McGoldrick is a newcomer to the Twitter world, but there is not better man to follow for the best in GAA news. @SeanMcGoldrick1

As one of the more prolific tweeters in Irish sports journalism, Irish Independent football writer Daniel McDonnell tends to be on hand with a witty view or two when big sports stories are breaking. @McDonnellDan

In terms of pure follower numbers, RTE's Des Cahill leads the way in Irish sports journalism, as his whit and wisdom attracts plenty of supporters. @sportsdes 

Check out my column on the heroes and villains on Twitter every week in the Sunday World newspaper: