As Peter Odemwingie's 'Twitter meltdown' has continued to explore ever weirder areas of the English language, the reaction of fans has been rather predictably like that of a spurned lover: frustrated, upset, and angry.
Twitter is a tremendous thing, and allows access to players' innermost thoughts normally only shared with staff and trusted local journalists. However, it also provides a direct route to then express anger to a player, and there is no doubt that a tirade of abuse led the complicated soul that is Odemwingie to feel the need to try and explain himself. That he did not go about this in the best way possible is in no doubt.
But it is important to try and get some perspective and look again at precisely what has happened. So here is what we know, and why I don't think it should be the end of Odemwingie's Albion career.
QPR put a bid in to Albion, which the club rejected. Odemwingie, who has just become a father, asked the club to tell him what price they are asking for and whether they will consider offers in the summer that will prevent him from having the uncertainty of one year left on a contract. So far so fair. If Odemwingie is to be believed the club simply refused to discuss any of this with him, and so he put in a transfer request. This then led to a torrent of abuse on Twitter from Albion fans, and then the real trouble started.
So let's look again at what Odemwingie's tweets stated. From reading them at the time and looking again at them now I don't see anything in them to get that angry about. Yes, he gave out confidential transfer talks that should have been kept behind closed doors (well, it all should have been but bear with me), and he should not have slighted Steve Clarke by saying he wants to play for Redknapp.
As for the rest: he implied that Albion fans have questioned his commitment in the past. Anyone who goes to our games must know that this is true. He is also clearly unhappy at being on the bench and playing out of position. Well, as I have spent many games bemoaning him being on the bench while Fortuné labours on the pitch I have to agree with him.
On to another criticism, that he is only interested in money. To this I say he has a young family and a short career: why should he not want to maximise it? Which then brings me back to what the club should do. Nothing. Ignore it. Fine him for breaching Twitter etiquette and move on.
Odemwingie is in his rights to want a move, to want more money, and the club is within its rights to tell him that he has a lucrative contract and has to honour it. 'Knuckle down, perform on the pitch like you did against Villa and we will talk about a sale or longer contract in the summer.'
Providing he is not now toxic amongst the squad, we need Odemwingie. We need his verve, pace, goals and assists for the rest of the year a contribution that could easily be worth more in prize money from our finishing position than an extra million here or there from QPR. Albion need to look at this from the perspective of the only place that matters, on the pitch. And we still need Peter Odemwingie.