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All American Hero Praised On Social Media

USA lose but Tim Howard wins on social media

Despite his team losing in a nail biting last of 16 match last night, American goalkeeper Tim Howard proved a sensational hit on social media. Fending off a Belgian onslaught for 120 minutes, his team may have lost 2-1 in a crushing defeat that marked their exit from the tournament, but in terms of personal victory Howard won Man of the Match and the hearts of 100,000 new followers on Twitter. Every cloud…

Howard played the match of his life, and his 16 acrobatic saves set a new World Cup record for the most keeper blocks in a match. Gracious in defeat, he conceded that his players couldn’t have done any more, displaying almost superhuman strength and stamina right through to the final seconds of extra time.

At 35 years old, and the most capped goalkeeper in the competition, Howard is no spring chicken but he became the most tweeted-about subject during the game, trending atop of Twitter. Fans and players alike took to social media to praise him for his game-changing performance with nearly two million tweets.

One Twitter commentator suggested that: ‘Tim Howard is a super hero and the American flag is his cape’.

Belgian opponent, and fellow Premier League player, Vincent Kompany offered: ‘Two words.. TIM HOWARD #Respect’.

The flurry of social media activity surrounding Howard reflected the nationwide excitement that set in for the match – according to Yahoo Finance, almost 14 million workers downed tools to watch the game, costing the US economy more than $600m (£350m) in lost labour productivity. The President got caught up in the frenzy too, arranging his cabinet meetings around the match. Obama may want to watch his back however, with many Twitter users calling for Howard to be the next US President. Commenting on his impressive goal saving feats, Howard simply said: ‘That’s my job’.

Some of the more imaginative Twitter responses to Howard’s athletics call for a burrito to be named after him, declare that he should never have to pay taxes again and suggest that he was the real savior of Private Ryan. There is currently a White House petition to change the name of Washington National Airport to the Tim Howard Airport. The roll call currently sits at 1,891 signatures – only 96,218 more needed.

However, Howard is no stranger to social media interest – his distinctive facial hair has long been a hot topic online. His beard has its own Twitter account with the imaginative hashtag #thebeardtobefeared.

Known as ‘a brick wall with arms and a beard’, Howard has previously joked that his beard brings him strength. In light of last night’s antics perhaps there’s more truth in this than first assumed.

For those wondering what a beardless Tim Howard would look like, here’s a picture of the goalie, clean-shaven, on Instagram.

If last night's reaction on social media is anything to go by, it seems that America might finally be ‘getting’ football. Sorry, soccer.

Recent graduate and now interning as content editor, when she's not writing articles Katie can quite likely be found festival-ing, holiday-ing or reading a book (dedicated English student that she is). Follow her @KatieAtSMF.

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All American Hero Praised On Social Media Reviewed by Anonymous on Wednesday, July 02, 2014 Rating: 5
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